Vulnerabilities / Threats
11/15/2013
08:00 AM
50%
50%

Online Extortion: The Ethics Of Unpublishing

What are the ethical limits on the Internet, the land where anything goes? What happens when people invent new schemes for making money and then take them too far?

The Internet is a land of freedom and entrepreneurship. But what happens when people take new monetization schemes too far? What are the ethical limits on the Internet?

Back in February I wrote about the mugshot extortion racket and how mug shot website operators were asking high fees to remove mug shot pages that had been optimized to rank for the subjects’ names. Recently, Google acted to suppress mugshot pages because they used scraped content. While I agree with Google’s action and am glad the problem has been partially solved, there is still work to be done. Bing, for example, has not yet done anything. Its search results remain polluted with mug shot scraper pages.

The mug shot racket is just one instance of a larger problem: paid unpublishing. In a paid unpublishing scam a website operator gets hold of embarrassing information, publicizes it, and then offers to take away the pain if a subject pays the fee. Whether or not this is criminal extortion, I’m quite sure the practice is unethical and should be condemned. Another example of an unpublishing scam would be revenge porn sites such as MyEx.com, which has links titled “Remove my name” that offer to delete records for $499. This is the digital equivalent of blackmail. Many types of information have the potential to embarrass. Unless steps are taken now to confront paid unpublishing, we may increasingly find our secrets or mistakes for sale.

Read the rest of this story on Internet Evolution.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
kheisenberg
50%
50%
kheisenberg,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/7/2013 | 10:10:40 PM
Florida-mugshot.com / bustedmugshots.com
I am having an issue with another mugshot site, which I believe is affiliated with bustedmugshots.com, and was hoping you could help me determine what person or company owns it: florida-mugshot.com. And here is my post: http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/florida-mugshot-dot-com-and-bustedmugshots-dot-com/florida-mugshot-com-bustedmugshots-com-extortion-20131202461028.html Their hosting company is OVH Hosting, a firm based in Montreal/QC (Canada) with a resolving IP of 192.99.0.14. Thanks in advance for any help.
kheisenberg
50%
50%
kheisenberg,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/9/2013 | 4:20:18 AM
kyle prall checkmated by inside edition
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2015-0543
Published: 2015-07-05
EMC Secure Remote Services Virtual Edition (ESRS VE) 3.x before 3.06 does not properly verify X.509 certificates from SSL servers, which allows man-in-the-middle attackers to spoof servers and obtain sensitive information via a crafted certificate.

CVE-2015-0544
Published: 2015-07-05
EMC Secure Remote Services Virtual Edition (ESRS VE) 3.x before 3.06 does not properly generate random values for session cookies, which makes it easier for remote attackers to hijack sessions by predicting a value.

CVE-2015-4129
Published: 2015-07-05
SQL injection vulnerability in Subrion CMS before 3.3.3 allows remote authenticated users to execute arbitrary SQL commands via modified serialized data in a salt cookie.

CVE-2015-0547
Published: 2015-07-04
The D2CenterstageService.getComments service method in EMC Documentum D2 4.1 and 4.2 before 4.2 P16 and 4.5 before P03 allows remote authenticated users to conduct Documentum Query Language (DQL) injection attacks and bypass intended read-access restrictions via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2015-0548
Published: 2015-07-04
The D2DownloadService.getDownloadUrls service method in EMC Documentum D2 4.1 and 4.2 before 4.2 P16 and 4.5 before P03 allows remote authenticated users to conduct Documentum Query Language (DQL) injection attacks and bypass intended read-access restrictions via unspecified vectors.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Marc Spitler, co-author of the Verizon DBIR will share some of the lesser-known but most intriguing tidbits from the massive report