Intel announced that the security software providing copy protection has been defeated. Code Hackers have discovered a master key that circumvents the software, allowing malicious recording of content. Many people may wonder how this could happen and when they might get their hands on a black market device. Intel thinks that cracking the code and actually deploying it inline between a cable box and a DVR is easier said than done.
Tom Waldrop, spokesman for Intel, said that the published material does produce workable keys disarming the protection of the digital rights management software. So the anti-piracy protection could be useless if people get busy trying to use this code, right?
According to Waldrop, a silicon chip would need to be created and then a device would need to be created. Once these steps are taken then the device could use the software. But those are some expensive steps. Intel believes that the effort and expense required to defeat the DRM system is not likely on a large scale, so the security is still effective. Basically, producing silicon chips doesn’t happen in someone’s garage one weekend.
On that note, there are ways to rip Blu-Ray discs but the recent DRM crack is likely to cause endless problems for the entertainment industry. We all are well aware of the problems faced in controlling content replication from past experiences with file sharing. But is a device to unlock the content easier than Intel would like you to think?
Per Kalamadea1234, Intel doesn’t want you to know “that newer graphic cards with built in processors and memory up to 4g can be reprogrammed to work the new keys.” If what Kalamadea1234 said is true remains to be seen, but security codes can always be cracked over time.
The next question is now glaring us in the face. Was the code or master key leaked? A Tweet suggested that the key was released and not just cracked by some mysterious genius techie. The thought of a leak prompts further questions of intent. Did Intel leak the key to justify new costs in rights protection?
Many codes have been cracked and or leaked over the years, but it seems odd that the security has been defeated so quickly. The suggestion that the key was leaked may explain the early compromise.
Kaplan, J. (2010). HDTV Code Crack Is Real, Intel Confirms. Foxnews.com.
Lawler, R. (2010). HDCP ‘master key’ supposedly released, nlocks HDTV copy protection permanently. Engadget.com.