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Posted: 5/8/2003 7:54:27 PM EDT
[url]http://theregister.co.uk/content/6/30620.html[/url] $2 trillion fine for Microsoft security snafu? By Ashlee Vance in San Francisco Posted: 08/05/2003 at 22:11 GMT Microsoft's latest security lapse with its Passport information service could trigger a $2.2 trillion fine on the company courtesy of the US government. Microsoft on Thursday admitted that a flaw in the password reset tool of its Passport service could compromise the information stored on all 200 million users. It scampered to post a fix and is looking into potential exploits, but the damage to Microsoft may already have been done. The Federal Trade Commission last year demanded that Microsoft improve its Passport security or face stiff fines of up to $11,000 per violation. Redmond promised to work harder to protect consumer information and launched it's Trustworthy Computing initiative to put regulators' minds at ease. Well, the FTC is looking into the Passport breach and could slap Microsoft with a fine of $2.2 trillion to cover all 200 million violated users. "If we were to find that they didn't take reasonable safeguards to protect the information, that could be an order violation," Jessica Rich, assistant director for financial practices at the FTC, told the AP. The flaw was discovered close to four minutes after security researcher Muhammad Faisal Rauf Danka set to work on Passport. He was able to access Passport accounts at will by typing "emailpwdreset" into a URL that has the e-mail address of a user account and the address where a reset message can be sent. A number of people claim to have exploited the flaw on their own accounts and those of friends. With permission from their comrades, of course. Microsoft sent out a warning by 8 p.m. last night and then plugged the hole three hours later. The company is very upset about the problem, as evidenced by Microsoft product manager Adam Sohn's comment to CNET. "Whatever," Sohn said. Actually, he did not say that, but his real remarks were less than compelling. "You live and learn," Sohn said. "We will obviously take a hard look to make sure that if something is sent through the nonstandard channels, and it is real, we are all over it." Live and learn? Can we afford to wait for Microsoft to crawl toward secure code or is password security one of those things we should learn to live without? ®
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 8:16:33 PM EDT
Microsoft has very good friends in Washington. They will pay nothing, just like they evaded the monoploly conviction.
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 8:39:56 PM EDT
great.. what a simple hole they could have discovered at design time...
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 9:23:01 PM EDT
Who doesn't think of something like that when they first sit down to type it? For you HTML coders out there: Wouldn't simply using "POST" instead of "GET" have fixed this before it was even a problem?! At least, that would have made it ignore the typing into the URL, right?
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 9:42:49 PM EDT
Finally an attempt to make them pay for producing utter crap... Even if it's the government, and not the countless customers who have been harmed by their broken products (and the immunity from product liability lawsuits that comes with the license... And people moan about gun lawsuit immunity. MS's immunity actually costs people money) that's doing it... You can polish [s]Windows[/s] a turd, but it's still by all means a turd...
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 9:47:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/8/2003 9:48:23 PM EDT by SeaDweller]
I'm sick of the .gov trying to [b]EXTORT[/b] money out of companies all the time: - Microsoft - Tobacco - Gun industry How many millions of dollars did the stupid gov waste pursuing them again?
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 10:08:33 PM EDT
Originally Posted By SeaDweller: I'm sick of the .gov trying to [b]EXTORT[/b] money out of companies all the time: - Microsoft - Tobacco - Gun industry How many millions of dollars did the stupid gov waste pursuing them again?
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I take it that you don't use computers very often other to talk here then?
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 10:19:49 PM EDT
Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
Originally Posted By SeaDweller: I'm sick of the .gov trying to [b]EXTORT[/b] money out of companies all the time: - Microsoft - Tobacco - Gun industry How many millions of dollars did the stupid gov waste pursuing them again?
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I take it that you don't use computers very often other to talk here then?
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Why would it matter? You think it's ok for the gov to extort US companies or something? If you people don't like MS use something else. No software is 100% bulletproof.
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 10:31:29 PM EDT
It's funny... Software is the diametrical opposite of medicine. When a software company makes a mistake, nobody is held responsible. But when a doctor makes a mistake, he could be out $millions. That said, consider where the price of software is going these days (down, down, down) and the price of medical care (up, up, UP!). Hm...
Link Posted: 5/8/2003 10:39:03 PM EDT
Originally Posted By SeaDweller:
Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
Originally Posted By SeaDweller: I'm sick of the .gov trying to [b]EXTORT[/b] money out of companies all the time: - Microsoft - Tobacco - Gun industry How many millions of dollars did the stupid gov waste pursuing them again?
View Quote
I take it that you don't use computers very often other to talk here then?
View Quote
Why would it matter? You think it's ok for the gov to extort US companies or something? If you people don't like MS use something else. No software is 100% bulletproof.
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Don't you think they would if they could? Your choices are Linux, Mac, and Windows. One has few utilities on the market, thanks to MS. The other locks you into propriatary hardware. Guess which choice is left? Its why it is called a monopoly.
Link Posted: 5/9/2003 12:06:55 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/9/2003 12:08:40 AM EDT by SeaDweller]
Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
Originally Posted By SeaDweller:
Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
Originally Posted By SeaDweller: I'm sick of the .gov trying to [b]EXTORT[/b] money out of companies all the time: - Microsoft - Tobacco - Gun industry How many millions of dollars did the stupid gov waste pursuing them again?
View Quote
I take it that you don't use computers very often other to talk here then?
View Quote
Why would it matter? You think it's ok for the gov to extort US companies or something? If you people don't like MS use something else. No software is 100% bulletproof.
View Quote
Don't you think they would if they could? Your choices are Linux, Mac, and Windows. One has few utilities on the market, thanks to MS. The other locks you into propriatary hardware. Guess which choice is left? Its why it is called a monopoly.
View Quote
Regardless, I hate to see the .gov extorting money from legitimate companies, which is what this ultimately boils down to. They must not be raking in the big bucks on drug asset forfeitures anymore. So who's gonna get the 2 trillion? If the gov wants MS to help pay off the deficit just say so. $6,460,216,910,696 BTW- If MS get's caught squelching competition they're in big trouble. Highly unlikely they continue in the capacity they used to. So where's all the good software now?
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