Lawsuit to put reverse engineering to the test

The Boston Globe has a report on a program, called CPHack, that will let any Cyber Patrol user decipher the list and that also deciphers the main password for Cyber Patrol. Anybody with this password can turn off Cyber Patrol, thus defeating the purpose of the program. Slashdot has a great story on this issue too. Now Mattel attorneys are bulk-emailing subpoenas even to people who linked to the cphack code!
That court has issued a temporary restraining order against the two men, requiring that they stop distributing CPHack. The court will hold another hearing on the matter today and may issue a preliminary injunction against Jansson and Skala.

To show support for the two men, Net users around the world have put copies of CPHack on their own sites. Schwartz said that Microsystems Software is contacting these users\' Internet service providers, demanding they delete the software from their customers\' sites. That move has roused the anger of the American Civil Liberties Union, which will appear in court today to support the right of Net users to post the software.

The outcome of the case could turn on whether the court decides Jansson and Skala had a right to reverse engineer Cyber Patrol.

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