by Mike Masnick
Wed, Nov 7th 2007 4:10pm
As many companies would still like to believe that an IP address is all you need to identify a person using a computer, it's worth remembering that not only does an IP address not definitively identify who was using a computer, but it can easily get mixed up. A year ago, we had the story of someone whose house got incorrectly raided (by Shaquille O'Neal, for some unexplained reason) for child porn after an ISP gave investigators the wrong IP address info. It sounds like something similar has happened in India, where a man spent 50 days in prison for posting insulting pictures to Orkut. The only problem was that the guy had nothing to do with it. His ISP handed over the wrong information. This was only discovered once police found and arrested the people who actually uploaded the image. We won't even get into the question of why people are being arrested for uploading insulting photos, but this should serve as a warning to anyone who thinks that relying on an IP address as the sole piece of evidence is reasonable.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Big Win For Fair Use: Jury Says Google's Use Of Java API's Was Fair Use... On To The Appeal
- Google To France: No You Don't Get To Censor The Global Internet
- Law Enforcement Raids Another Tor Exit Node Because It Still Believes An IP Address Is A Person
- UK Government Brings In Yet More Counter-Terrorism Measures -- Including Internal Exile
- Court Dismisses Copyright Lawsuit, Noting IP Address Is Not Enough Evidence For Infringement