IFPI Gets Into Malware Game

from the sure,-erase-all-my-files dept

The RIAA’s international cohort, the IFPI, has released a piece of software that uninstalls P2P software and copyrighted music and video from users’ computers. They’re calling it a “simple educational tool” to show people how they “can enjoy music and film legally and responsibly without risking legal action by copyright holders.” That sounds like a vaguely veiled threat that unless people delete files which the IFPI deems offensive, they’re open to being sued. A quote from the chairman of the IFPI sounds rather ominous as well: “This is a timely initiative: it comes after months of warning and information campaigns making it clear that file-swapping copyrighted music is illegal and could involve fines and prosecutions.” That sounds an awful lot like “run our software, or you’re going to get sued.” Of course, this really isn’t anything new, as the recording industry is no stranger to intimidation via lawsuit. Now, believing they have the right to determine the legality of certain applications and activities isn’t enough — they want to personally vet all the files on your computer, too.

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Comments on “IFPI Gets Into Malware Game”

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Pete Austin says:

What It Does

Download Page. The following license agreement is posted as “Fair Use”.

for the use of Digital File Check

NOTE: Digital File Check (the ?Software?) is provided by IFPI, its national groups and its suppliers to you under licence. Please read these licence terms and conditions carefully before using the Software. Use the Software only if you accept all licence terms and conditions.


The Software is offered to help you search your computer for peer-to-peer ?file-sharing? software, and gives an overview of the media files shared or stored on your computer. The software gives you the option to remove such programs or files.

1. The Software searches for the most popular peer-to-peer ?file-sharing? programs. However, there is no guarantee that the Software will necessarily find all file-sharing programs, as programs of this type that are lesser known or later developed may have been installed on your computer, or the programs may have been hidden in some way.

2. The Software also searches for files in the most popular music, film and image formats. However there is no guarantee that the Software will necessarily find all such media files, as the files may be stored in other formats, or renamed or hidden on your computer in a way that the Software might not find.

3. The Software indicates which files are in the ?shared folders? used by file-sharing software. Files in these folders typically are made available for transmission and copying to others on the internet. PLEASE NOTE: It is illegal to make music, film or other copyrighted files available on the internet without permission.

4. The software makes an inventory of music, video and image files found elsewhere on your computer. You must determine yourself whether those files were acquired legally or illegally. The Software does not verify or report the source of files found. You may need to clarify this by discussing it with the persons who downloaded or otherwise installed the files.

5. You are responsible for anything illegal taking place or stored on your computer. Using the Software can provide you with an overview of how your computer is being using, but this does not imply any exemption or liability on your part. The Software does not transmit any information about you, your computer, or its contents to anyone.


1. You are granted a non-exclusive, limited, royalty-free licence to download, install and use the Software on one or more personal computers under the terms and conditions of this licence.

2. You may use the Software only for your own non-commercial and personal purposes. This Software is not authorised for sale, distribution or other use for direct or indirect economic gain. Any commercial use must be licensed separately.

3. All other uses are prohibited. You are not authorised, and the copyright law otherwise does not permit, any other reproduction of the Software, or any modification, adaptation, translation, creation of derivative works, incorporation with other programs, sale, rental, redistribution, communication, or making available to third parties, of the Software.

4. This Software is protected by copyright. The Software is protected by national and international copyright and other intellectual-property laws, and any unauthorised use may violate such laws. Your rights to use the Software are set out in this licence. The Software remains the property of JSA Software ApS. No sale or other transfer of ownership takes place, and no express or implied rights or licences are granted with respect to the Software under any copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret or other intellectual-property right except as specifically provided in this licence.


1. IFPI?s suppliers have developed the Software solely to perform the limited functions described in this licence under these terms of use. IFPI, its national groups and its suppliers do not make any other warranties or guaranties about the Software, its operation or results, and the Software is thus provided ?AS IS? and ?WITH ALL FAULTS?.


3. Given that the Software is provided at no charge, the downloading, installation and use of the Software is done at your own discretion and risk. Given the unpredictable behaviour of some file-sharing programs, you should always retain a back up of important programs and files on your computer when installing or using software like this.

4. In no event shall IFPI, its national groups, its Software or other suppliers, or endorsing parties be liable to you or any third party for any damages, whether direct, indirect, incidental, special, punitive, consequential or other damages of any kind. Consumers? statutory rights are unaffected.

5. It is your responsibility to comply with the law and the terms of this licence. The user will indemnify and hold IFPI, its national groups, suppliers and endorsing parties harmless from any claim or demand, and damages and costs arising thereof, made by any third party due to or arising out of the user?s violation of the law or this licence.


1. Governing law. By installing and using the Software, the user agrees that all matters relating to the Software and its use shall be governed exclusively by the laws of the country in which the authorised web site from which the Software is downloaded is located, without regard to the conflicts of laws principles thereof. The user submits to the exclusive personal jurisdiction and venue of the courts of that country with respect to all such matters.

2. Entire agreement. This licence, as modified from time to time, sets forth the entire understanding and agreement between you and IFPI (and its national groups and suppliers) with respect to the subject matter hereof. If any provision shall be held to be invalid, illegal, or unenforceable, the validity, legality, and enforceability of the remaining provisions shall not be in any way affected or impaired.

3. Termination. This licence shall remain in effect unless terminated. This licence automatically terminates upon failure by the user to comply with its terms. All licences and authorisation to use the Software terminate, and you must destroy the Software, upon termination of this licence.

Mousky (user link) says:

You are overreacting

You are reading way too much into what the IFPI writes on their web site – is this place becoming the next digg? Believe it or not, some parents and many businesses will find this program to be useful. Perhaps they want to avoid lawsuits. Perhaps they want to reduce the load on their servers. Perhaps they just want control over machines they own.

Seer says:

Re: You are overreacting

I totally agree that you are over reacting. Just from the quotes you’ve given, there aren’t even any ultimatums. “could” get fines or prosecution. Yea? Well of course it’s against the law to share copyrighted things (excepting fair use). No news here. Also, the program doesn’t automatically delete anything (you made it sound like it did). IT only looks for the most common file sharing apps and what media files are in those app’s shared folders. Not very intrusive at all. Could actually be useful for parents, depending on the child…

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