Sony BMG has struck a deal in a class action
lawsuit over copy-restriction software it used in music CDs, resulting in major benefits to consumers.
Free music downloads and cash refunds could soon be
offered to owners of Sony BMG CDs loaded with controversial anti-piracy
software. The row about the software Sony BMG used to try to stop
illegal copying of its CDs blew up in October when programmer Mark
Russinovich noticed his PC had been infected by a type of malicious
program known as a "rootkit".
He found that the rootkit came from XCP anti-piracy
software on a Sony BMG CD. It also left his machine open to exploit by
malicious programmers and computer virus writers.
The deal also means Sony BMG must abandon use of the XCP
and MediaMax programs and provide tools that help people clean the
software from their PCs.
It must also fix any new vulnerabilities the programs
are found to create or which are created by any anti-piracy system it
adopts in the future.
Sony BMG must also change the way that it tries to
protect music on discs and in the future must clearly label and test
its anti-piracy systems. The methods it wants to adopt must also be
The music maker offered no comment on the news of the settlement.
View: BBC News