http://news.ft.com/ft/gx.cgi/ftc?pagename=View&c=Article&cid=FT3DEBE1XZC&live=true&tagid=ZZZLZDL1B0C&subheading=media,%20entertainment,%20%20sport By Ashling O'Connor Media Correspondent Published: April 11 2002 21:31 A News Corporation whistleblower has claimed that NDS, a software subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch's pay-television empire, directed an employee to leak secret codes belonging to its closest rival to internet pirates. Oliver Kommerling, a software security consultant, on Thursday said in a written deposition to a California court that Chris Tarnovsky, an NDS employee on the West Coast, arranged for Canal Plus Technologies' codes - enabling smart cards in pay-TV boxes - to be published on the internet. The allegations, submitted as evidence in a $1bn (E1.1bn) lawsuit brought by Canal Plus, the pay-TV arm of Vivendi Universal would, if true, blow apart NDS's defence that it was not party to the hacking suffered by the French company. NDS maintains it was not a party to the hacking suffered by the French company. They will also exacerbate tensions between Mr Murdoch and Jean-Marie Messier, Vivendi's chief executive, fierce payTV rivals. NDS technology is used by News Corp's British Sky Broadcasting, while Canal Plus's smart cards are used by Vivendi and ITV Digital. Both Canal Plus and ITV Digital are claiming hundreds of millions of pounds in lost revenues from the piracy, which allowed hackers to access films, sports and other content free. Canal Plus says it is concerned its next generation of smart cards, out next week, will also be hacked. Mr Kommerling, whose company ADSR is 60 per cent-owned by NDS, claims to have been told by NDS employees that the Canal Plus code - cracked by NDS technicians in an Israeli laboratory - was sent to Chris Tarnovsky, who had connections with the internet piracy community. "The same NDS employees told me that it was agreed that Mr Tarnovsky should arrange for Canal Plus code to be published on the internet," he said in his deposition. Canal Plus is seeking the disclosure of certain documents by NDS, whose directors include James and Lachlan Murdoch. It says it wants to avoid the destruction of potential evidence. A California judge will next week hear motions by both parties. NDS denies all charges. NDS on Thursday night refused to comment on the fresh evidence presented by Canal Plus. But in its motion, obtained by the Financial Times, it said: "It is an attempt by an inept competitor to shift the blame for its incompetence, to damage its skilled competitor behind the shield of the litigation privilege and to extract an unfair price in merger negotiations." - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Apr 12 2002 - 03:24:25 PDT