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Re: If Lycos can attack spammer sites, can we all start doing it?
From: "Jason Coombs" <jasonc () science org>
Date: Thu, 2 Dec 2004 17:54:57 +0000 GMT

Are we forgetting that there is no such thing as software product liability?

Look at the EULA for the Lycos screen saver.

Even without explicit language in the EULA, Lycos is just a software maker in this case. It is the end user who is 
guilty of an abusive attack -- if anyone is. The rate limit per client is set to prevent a single client from crossing 
the attack threshold, so this could be the first test of product liability for the intentional creation of zombie 

Microsoft, Symantec, and other vendors of products that auto-update have been in control of zombie armies for many 
years, with periodic DoS of the zombies, but as of yet no known external impact. Lycos is the first, and they are 
pioneering an odd precedent.

More proof that the nature of capitalism is that anything that can be done that might be profitable eventually will be 
done. This does not bode well for nanotechnology and genetic engineering.

Jason Coombs
jasonc () science org

-----Original Message-----
From: Kyle Maxwell <krmaxwell () gmail com>
Date: Thu, 2 Dec 2004 08:48:18 
To:n3td3v <xploitable () gmail com>
Cc:full-disclosure () lists netsys com
Subject: Re: [Full-disclosure] If Lycos can attack spammer sites, can we all start doing it?

On Thu, 2 Dec 2004 03:47:06 +0000, n3td3v <xploitable () gmail com> wrote:
Hey, thanks for the insight. I can't see Lycos introducing the
screensaver without talking with legal teams first, so surely we can
presume everything is legal and above board?! Otherwise, why would
Lycos want to put themselves in a legal tangle? Unless they weighed up
the legal costs against the profit they would make from the PR stunt,
from which all I can see, is all this whole thing appears to be.

It's entirely possible that their lawyers cleared it but that doesn't
necessarily make it really above board; if lawyers always agreed on
what was allowed, we wouldn't have so many corporate lawsuits. :) They
may be standing on the principle of "these are just a bunch of website
visits" without taking into account the fact that there's a stated
intent beyond just visiting the sites.

This is probably going to get a lot messier for Lycos before it's all over.

Kyle Maxwell
[krmaxwell () gmail com]

Full-Disclosure - We believe in it.
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