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RE: The legal / illegal line?
From: "Craig Wright" <cwright () bdosyd com au>
Date: Wed, 7 Mar 2007 16:20:01 +1100


Hi Ivan,

The Good Samaritan laws vary by jurisdiction. There are a number of separate ones and some even apply here in Australia 
in limited instances.



These rules are designed to restrict actions against wrongful death. This is tortious actions by a third party such as 
family of the deceased.



In many civil law countries (eg. France) these go further and make the person responsible for aiding the other party 
and may have the person criminally liable for a failure to act.



In case 2 of my original reply, the person giving aide had also impeded another from aiding the injured party. In this 
case, the wrongful death tort would be actionable. Worse still, where the Good Samaritan laws apply, the person is not 
allowed to stop rendering aid without extenuating circumstances or unless another party with equal or greater skill 
steps in to help.



The party responding is not liable for tortious action for the death, disfigurement or disability of the victim as long 
as they acted as a "rational person". By stopping the additional assistance, the person would not be held to have acted 
reasonably and thus would be liable.



Clear as mud.



You are correct, I have some legal training. I am completing an honours masters (LLM - International commercial law) at 
the moment - expect to complete the dissertation in Jan/Feb next year. Following this I am starting a PhD in 
Economics/Law (on the economic impact of ecommerce and e-crime legislation and its effects). I also have a few papers 
published in a couple legal journals.



And for those who like to call me a lawyer (not that this bothers me, but I do not get paid for it), yes I am working 
on a post grad law degree, but I also have several masters degrees in IT related fields. So :P

http://www.infoage.idg.com.au/index.php/id;1151410747;fp;512;fpid;1874290912 
<http://www.infoage.idg.com.au/index.php/id;1151410747;fp;512;fpid;1874290912> 



Regards,

Craig



PS - academic junkie and proud of it ;)


________________________________

From: Ivan . [mailto:ivanhec () gmail com]
Sent: Wed 7/03/2007 2:24 PM
To: Craig Wright
Cc: McCarty, Eric C.; Dotzero; pen-test () securityfocus com
Subject: Re: The legal / illegal line?


Hi Craig,

It's obvious that you have legal training, but how does the good Samaritan laws affect your ascertin in case 2? If you 
attempt in vain to save the person, you are not responsible for the loss of life? at least in the US and Canada?

I don't think there is anything similiar here in Australia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Samaritan_law

cheers
Ivan


On 3/6/07, Craig Wright <cwright () bdosyd com au> wrote:


        > So in your opinion, companies have a legal right to put my credit card
        information, social security information, medical information, etc. at
        risk?

        No, and this is not what I stated.  There are privacy and credit
        protection laws to cover this.

        I do agree that the laws are f_cked as you put it, but we live in a
        democracy (or at least most ppl on this list do) and the tyranny of the
        majority wins. Most people are afraid of change and thus the changes
        that occur are those lobbied for by those with a vested interest.

        However, where do you draw the line? I admit the law is far too sided
        with stopping others from helping (or taking the law into their own
        hands), but where do you draw the line.

        As an example (excluding cases where there is an obligation in this case
        such as a parent child relationship); A person is (except in a FEW
        jurisdictions where there are explicit help laws - which would mean
        making a phone call) drowning in a puddle. You see them and stop. You do
        nothing to stop others seeing you or the other person and do not
        interfere. It is clear that the other person is drowning in the puddle.
        They seem unconscious. To save them all you have to do is roll them over
        - at no cost to yourself. You decide to wait and watch them die. You
        have done nothing legally wrong.

        Case 2. You see a person in trouble. Another person is going to run for
        help but you state that you can handle it and tell them not to go to the
        phone. They comply. You fail in your attempt to save the person, but it
        is likely that a trained person (if they arrived) could have saved them.
        You are legally responsible for the person's death.

        "Just seems backasswards to me." Yes, and to many people I would
        believe. But most people do not take an interest, and thus laws are
        biased away for societies interests.

        This is a topic best off this list however. The point is not if the law
        is right or wrong, but that it is there.

        Regards,
        Craig

        -----Original Message-----
        From: McCarty, Eric C. [mailto: emccarty () er ucsd edu <mailto:emccarty () er ucsd edu> ]
        Sent: Tuesday, 6 March 2007 9:01 AM
        To: Craig Wright; Dotzero; pen-test () securityfocus com
        Subject: RE: The legal / illegal line?

        I agreed up until...

        "People and firms have a legal right to ignorance. As much as we may
        want to change this, they have the right to live in their own stupidity
        and bare their own risk. You do not have the right to make them agree
        with you - even if you are right."

        ORLY?

        So in your opinion, companies have a legal right to put my credit card
        information, social security information, medical information, etc. at
        risk?

        You may perhaps be very right, but I'm certain we can now see very
        clearly how f__cked the laws we live under regarding Information
        technology are.

        I think laws should be amended to protect the do-gooders who find and
        report vulnerabilities, since as you mentioned, many companies live in
        ignorance and care less, why should the consumer be left at the mercy of
        the "bad people" (black hats if you will) instead of protected by the
        "good people" (white hats if you will) ?

        Just seems backasswards to me.

        Eric

        -----Original Message-----
        From: listbounce () securityfocus com [mailto:listbounce () securityfocus com]
        On Behalf Of Craig Wright
        Sent: Monday, March 05, 2007 1:24 PM
        To: Dotzero; pen-test () securityfocus com
        Subject: RE: The legal / illegal line?


        Dotzero is correct, you can point out concerns to the party you have
        contracted to and have them ask the third party to do something, or stay
        away.

        Worse still, in many common law juristictions (inc the US, UK, Au etc)
        you may be breaking the law further by not freely giving any information
        on the scan to the third party (tp). First there is no contract with the
        TP to cover you for any damages (and scans can cause hosts to crash =
        damage).


        Next, you have no implied or explict license to engage in the action,
        thus a breach of the TP's rights.

        Thus if you call them after the even stating something along the lines
        of "I have scanned your system and discovered vulnerability X, I will
        send you the report for $1,000" for instance, you could be held to have
        committed extortion. Where the TP exchanges money for the report, not
        only have you handed them proof of the action, but this is now
        blackmail.

        Next, consideration can not pass after the event in a contract. Thus if
        the party pays you, even where there is no criminal liability, they can
        bring suit to regain the payment from you in that there was no valid
        contract and the payment may be revoked.

        People and firms have a legal right to ignorance. As much as we may want
        to change this, they have the right to live in their own stupidity and
        bare their own risk. You do not have the right to make them agree with
        you - even if you are right.

        Regards,
        Craig

        -----Original Message-----
        From: listbounce () securityfocus com [mailto:listbounce () securityfocus com]
        On Behalf Of Dotzero
        Sent: Tuesday, 6 March 2007 6:52 AM
        To: pen-test () securityfocus com
        Subject: Re: The legal / illegal line?

        The original question from Barry was about legal vs illegal. There is
        only one (IMHO) answer to that question. It depends on jurisdiction.
        The laws that apply in one jurisdiction may not apply in another.

        I'm also concerned about Barry asking about when others "approach a
        client" to tell them about their insecurities following a "simple
        pen-test".. They are NOT your client unless they have engaged you.
        They are a potential client. They have no relationship with you and
        you have not been authorized by them to do anything on their behalf.
        Even if you haven't done anything illegal, most companies I'm familiar
        with would be unlikely to hire you or your company under such
        circumstances. The actions you describe are indicative of a failure to
        recognize appropriate boundaries.

        A more reasonable approach (and one more likely to attract business)
        would be to have your sales people pitch a free security assessment.
        Have a standard agreement authorizing a standard but limited set of
        activities that you can then use to show a potential client how they
        might benefit from your services.

        As usual, just my 2 cents.

        dotzero

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recipient, you must not use or disclose the information. If you have received this email in error, please inform us 
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        Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender. You may not rely on this message as 
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signed by a Partner of BDO.

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interception, corruption or unauthorised access.

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Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation in respect of matters arising within 
those States and Territories of Australia where such legislation exists.

DISCLAIMER
The information contained in this email and any attachments is confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, you 
must not use or disclose the information. If you have received this email in error, please inform us promptly by reply 
email or by telephoning +61 2 9286 5555. Please delete the email and destroy any printed copy. 

Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender. You may not rely on this message as advice 
unless it has been electronically signed by a Partner of BDO or it is subsequently confirmed by letter or fax signed by 
a Partner of BDO.

BDO accepts no liability for any damage caused by this email or its attachments due to viruses, interference, 
interception, corruption or unauthorised access.

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