Sunday, September 2, 2007

Bad ideas, probably ready for import

From the BBC we learn about a plan in Germany to plant spyware onto suspect's computers via spam email.

The e-mails would contain Trojans - software that secretly installs itself on suspects' computers, allowing agents to search the hard drives.
There would only be "a few" of these (no specification of how many) and for a limited time (no hint of how long).

I don't know what the situation is with German law, though news reports are cited that privacy laws may be violated by this. In the US, of course, there would (in theory) need to be court approval, but as we've seen lately, that's not really required; it's more of a suggestion, just being in the constitution and all.

I give it 6 months before it's done here, and 6 months after that before the story breaks and we find out how many cases it's been used on. And it'll be a much higher number than anyone expects.

And of course, this raises some questions. Will antivirus software be "updated" to ignore "official" spyware? If I find it and delete it anyway, is that taken as proof of malicious or criminal intent? Is it interfering with an investigation?


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