3 Count: Blocking Intel

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1: France Disconnects First File-Sharer From the Internet

First off today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that France’s Hadopi has disconnected its first file sharer as an individual who ignored two previous warnings will, barring an appeal, lose his Internet access for 15 days and have to pay a 600 Euro ($800) fine.

Hadopi is France’s “three strikes” system and it sends out warning letters to suspected file sharers. After two warning letters, the system either issues punishments including fines and possible disconnection. Others that have reached the third strike, however, have only been issued fines to date.

The move comes at something of a crossroads for Hadopi as a government report recommended scrapping the system and replacing it with a similar one that doesn’t disconnect file sharers, but rather, issues automated fines. The report also questioned the effectiveness of Hadopi in reducing piracy or promoting legitimate services.

2: Gatekeepers of Cable TV Try to Stop Intel

Next up today, Brian Stelter at the New York Times reports that Intel is working on a new, virtual cable service that would deliver TV channels to subscribers online. However, Intel says that their efforts are being thwarted by cable companies who are using their contracts with content providers to shut Intel out of the market.

According to a source cited in the article, the antitrust division of the Justice Department is looking into the issue as part of a larger investigation into cable and satellite companies. In the meantime though, Intel has said that it is willing to pay more than other distributors for the content and, despite the struggles, plans on launching the service later this year.

Comcast, the nation’s largest cable provider, agreed to not interfere with Internet distributors when it acquired NBCUniversal in 2011. However, reports are that it is Time Warner Cable, the second largest provider, that has been the most aggressive in this area.

3: ‘FBI’ Computer Virus Nearly Scares Staten Islander Out of $475; Don’t Be a Victim

Finally today, Dean Balsamini at the Staten Island Advance reports that a new computer virus is making rounds that claims to be from the FBI. The virus locks down the victim’s computer and demands a $475 fine to pay for alleged file sharing or copyright infringement.

The virus, like others before it, is completely fake and is simply a regular ransomware virus pretending to be from the FBI. However, the “FBI Virus” has still fooled at least a handful of users.

Some of the viruses even go as far as to take photos of the computer owner via webcam and post them on a fake FBI alert. The viruses mostly come in through unpatched or unprotected computers with users who have clicked on dubious links, often in email or instant message.

Suggestions

That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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