New Beastie Boy CD silently installs DRM software on your PC without telling you.

If you’re a Beastie Boy’s fan you may want to think twice before trying to play their new CD on your PC or Macintosh. According to an entry on the SecurityFocus BugTraq archive at least:

Well I truly regret actually purchasing a copy of the new Beastie Boys album to support them.

It seems that Capitol Records has some sort of new copy protection system, that automatically, silently, installs “helpful” copy protection software on MacOS and Windows as soon as you insert the CD into default systems. I’m not sure exactly what it does yet, but I am sure regreting actually purchasing said media now… they don’t deserve my money if they choose to pull stupid stunts like this. Installing software without your permission sounds like viral malware behaviour to me. I certainly hope the AV companies
put signatures into their products for this crap.

They include some sort of uninstaller buried on there for Windows, but I see no such thing for MacOS. If anyone has disassembled the aforementioned malware already and can save us some time with instructions on how to remove it… thanks in advance.

caveat emptor,
—dr

The BB message forums have already started to see some postings from pissed off fans, though the group they should really be targeting is Capitol Records.

5 thoughts on “New Beastie Boy CD silently installs DRM software on your PC without telling you.

  1. This should be less of a problem with Windows XP SP2 comes out. If an audio CD with CD-ROM content is inserted, instead of blinding running autoplay the user is prompted so that they can decide whether to view the bonus content or play the CD. Obviously, if the user isn’t expecting bonus content they can opt out.

    If I remember correctly some music CDs install replacement CD drivers which prevent you from ripping CDs unless you remove the driver or do a system restore (!). I wonder if this is what this is.

  2. That’s really good to know! I currently have my Autoplay thingie turned off. I don’t play music CD’s on my computer. I just plug my iPod into some speakers and play away. smile

    What a wonderful world we live in now thank’s to the DMCA!

  3. Actually, that’s an interesting point. By preventing the autoplay from running, is Microsoft violating the DMCA?  long face

  4. That point was brought up when someone was able to defeat the copyprotection of an audio CD by turning off the autoplay feature. They also defeated it by marking the CD with a black magic marker.

    I don’t remember what the ruling was, but I don’t think it was decided that turning off the autoplay feature wasn’t violating the DMCA. After all the autoplay feature was around long before the DMCA was.

    Still, puts a little a little less humor on that saterical article on radio.about.com (http://radio.about.com/library/weekly/aa082603a.htm)

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