Google Video and Privacy
Last week Google introduced its video service, which lets users download free or paid-for videos. The service’s design is distinctive in many ways, not all of them desirable. One of the distinctive features is a DRM (anti-infringement) mechanism which is applied if the copyright owner asks for it. Today I want to discuss the design of Google Video’s DRM, and especially its privacy implications.
First, some preliminaries. Google’s DRM, like everybody else’s, can be defeated without great difficulty. Like all DRM schemes that rely on encrypting files, it is vulnerable to capture of the decrypted file, or to capture of the keying information, either of which will let an adversary rip the video into unprotected form. My guess is that Google’s decision to use DRM was driven by the insistence of copyright owners, not by any illusion that the DRM would stop infringement. Freedom to Tinker » Blog Archive » Google Video and Privacy
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