Sony, Interrupted

It hasn’t been a good few weeks for Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE).  Their networks were taken down, employees threatened, e-mails exposed, salary and personal information disseminated.  Its stars and executives have been portrayed as overpaid petulant jerks. And at least some of its movies have been leaked online – including movies currently in theaters, and some…

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Posner’s Privacy Prognostications – Perpetually Peeved

At a recent computer security and privacy conference here in Washington, Judge Richard Posner made headlines when he announced that privacy was “overrated” and existed mainly for the purposes of protecting criminals. According to published sources, Posner stated: “Much of what passes for the name of privacy is really just trying to conceal the disreputable parts…

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Computer Crime and Punishment

Two recent cases, one in the United States and the other in Germany, point out the problem of how we determine the appropriate punishment for computer hackers.  To a great extent, we both over-punish and under-punish these crimes; sometimes both in the same case. Most crimes are fairly discrete events.  You rob a bank, you commit an assault, and…

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Worst Breach Ever; Why the Sony Breach May be the Most Significant Security Breach in US History

It all sounds like the plot of a major Hollywood blockbuster. Dave Skylark of the TV show “Skylark Tonight” and his producer Aaron Rapoport are recruited by the CIA to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un in  the movie, “The Interview.” Haven’t seen it?  It’s no wonder. The film’s distributor, Sony Pictures, was supposed to release…

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I’m From the Government, I’m Here to Help- DOJ Announces New Cyber-Security Section

The Department of Justice is establishing a new unit within the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Criminal Division designed to actually help entities prevent cybercrime, instead of just prosecuting it after it happens, according to a speech at Georgetown University at the Cybercrime 2020 Symposium by Assistant Attorney General (AAG) Leslie R. Caldwell. The problem…

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