UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which Targeted Game File Sharers

December 10, 2008 -

A British law firm which targets consumers who allegedly share games and movies via the Internet has itself been targeted by the UK's largest consumer advocacy organization.

Zeropaid reports that consumer group Which? filed a complaint against law firm Davenport Lyons with the UK's Solicitors Regulatory Authority. As GamePolitics reported in August, Davenport Lyons aggressively targeted alleged file sharers on behalf of five UK game publishers. From Zeropaid's coverage:

The alleged file-sharers have received letters from the law firm demanding payment of £500 ($773 USD) compensation for copyright infringement, but many, most notably a non-gaming elderly couple, have been wrongly accused.

A recent Which? Computing investigation found that while working with games firm Atari, Davenport Lyons wrongly accused a Scottish couple, aged 54 and 66, of infringing copyright of a game ‘Race O7’. Since then, Atari has severed ties with the law firm. But Which? Computing has evidence from people who, after repeated letters from Davenport Lyons, have been scared into paying compensation for something they say they did not do.

The Which? complaint charges, among other things, that Davenport Lyons' letters to alleged file sharers misstate copyright law, ignore evidence of innocence, and increase the amount demanded over time.


Comments

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

Davenport Lyons also recently served papers to thousands of people for the illegal downloading of hardcore porn.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/hi/technology/newsid_7766000/7766448.stm

Its hilarious, but at the same time its sad. Its very clear that Davenport Lyons is simply cashing in on the fact that some people will be unable to properly respond to the charges, or will be to embarassed to openly contest them.

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

a all they have is IP adresses.

they need a MAC address. Or a forensic examination  of your computer as proof. nothing else will suffice.

IP adresses ...

ok.. what if there are multiple computers in a household?, cant prove who.

what if you have an unsecured wireless network, anyone can connect.

what if you have an secured wireless network, anyone with any hacking experience can connect.

what about torrent sites handing out bogus IPs to mask downloaders identities, that could be yours.

what about sites that can generate a random IP and hide people behind it.. (you can literally google for one).

what about the fact that IP adresses arent truly a fingerprint, and can be repooled by an ISP and handed out to someone else?

what about the fact that a trojan/virus could technically download /upload data from your computer.

Bull shit. if i got a letter i would laugh at them, and ask them not to contact me again or i would sue them for harassment.

 

 

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

Even the MAC address wouldn't suffice as evidence as they can be spoofed fairly easily.


Parallax Abstraction
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

www.truecrypt.org

Also, ISPs keep logs on when an IP was handed out when.

"User 858 (MAC address xxxx) previously assigned IP address 3.1.2.4 was assigned IP address 1.2.3.4 on 12/3/06 from 14:31 to 18:02, was reassigned new address 2.1.3.4 at 12/3/06 22:32"

That's about exactly what it looks like, with different wording at times.

 

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

 They still need physical proof of the deed; just because their is blood on the street infront of your house doesn't mean you're a murderer. They need to kick in your frontdoor and find the body.

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

These people have actually been sending lawsuit threats all throughout Europe for the last 2 years.

I hope they get shot.

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

Another interesting nugget in this poo sandwich is the fact that they tried to solicit money from an elderly couple for downloading hardcore gay porn!

Oh, and they also lied in their letters to folk in saying that not securing their internet connection (read: wireless routers) was grounds for legal action.

Hit http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12/10/davenport_lyons_complaint/ for the full story (UK coverage)

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

What? you're accountable for someone else's actions through your wireless router if it's not secure in UK? thats not true right? O.o   People need to realize that no matter if you use WEP or WPA, or WPA2 with TKIP and everything, even if you restrict MAC addresses and turn off SSID broadcasting, all of that can be hacked with a program made to listen to the network traffic and pick out all the info it needs. It can take days for it to crack it but it WILL crack it.

Personally I like to leave mine almost wide open (I only turn off SSID broadcasting) for the sake of if someone ever DID get in and do something illegal I won't have some technologically inept prosecution lawyer claiming "OMG it was sooo secure theres no way it could have been hacked, it has to be him!!!".

Just google "WPA TKIP Cracking" and you'll find plenty of evidence to dispell the safety blanket people think WPA2/TKIP is. Not that i advocate such practices,i despise it... I'll stop here so as not to start a flame war on whether or not using a WLAN that isn't yours is fair or not (believe it or not i've met people who think it's perfectly ok ethically to crack a WLAN and use their inet connection).

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

WPA2/TKIP can be cracked, there are other ways to secure it.

Regardless, it's not very nice to use other people's internet connection without permission (to understate it), and when I catch people I don't know on mine, I open fire. Most of the people that run these scripts aren't very secure themselves, which is downright infuriating.

Locks are for honest people, guns are for dishonest ones. Blanket lawsuits are for sleazy game companies that won't get my money until there's a public apology.

 

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

I would LOVE to see documentation proving that WPA in any form can be cracked in any reasonable, realistic amount of time without a supercomputer.  There was one recent "exploit" discovered when using TKIP but the likelyhood of executing the crack successfully was virtually nil.  A network properly secured with WPA and a strong password is virtually bulletproof.


Parallax Abstraction
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

(edit: it was WPA not WPA2 now that i think about it)WPA TKIP was cracked at my mom's house. I set it up and 7 days later someone else was on it. I even had it locked down to 1 MAC address (the Wii they had). No bullshit. After that I showed them how to turn the wireless radio on and off in the settings and just told them when they wanted to use the Wii online, turn it on.

The thing to keep in mind is if the person lives close enough to you, they can work on it for as long as they want. It doesn't hurt them or take up much time and the benefit of having a free secondary connection to the internet to run their file sharing off of while they play whatever game they want on their personal connection outweighs the time spent. Also the benefit of doing anything illegal online and not be able to trace it back to you is a good benefit too.

I used to be in the same camp. I had a buddy tell me WPA? pssh man you can crack that and we had a long arguement over it. I was confident with WPA and such untill it got cracked on an AP I setup myself, used a random key, turn off SSID broadcasting, lock down MAC address, all the stuff you think makes you safe. But once it happens to a network you setup, it shakes your confidence in it severely.

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

Using someones open internet connection can be seen as the same as hooking up your Christmas lights to your neighbors outdoor power outlet.

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

I hope that firm gets their asses handed to them on a silver platter >.<  I hate that tactic soooo much after the DTV Fiasco that finally came to a halt when someone successfully got the post office involved because the letters were considered to be an extortion attempt. The letters pretty much said in no uncertain terms that it was cheaper to just pay up than try to defend yourself, you can't deny that is extortion :P 

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

This could be interesting here in the UK, Trading Standards do not land lightly on companies that harrass individuals for money, and adding unfounded legal threats is just the icing on the cake.

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

I got my torch and pitchfork, when are we marching down there?

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Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

Lawyers being sleaze?

GOODNESS NO! Who saw this coming?

Can you tell I'm being sarcastic, or was I too subtle?

Re: UK Consumer Group Files Complaint Against Law Firm Which

That was sarcasm!?!?! :P

^sarcasm

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james_fudgethere's some inside baseball stuff going on in this Andrew - likely some stuff we don't know10/20/2014 - 3:30pm
E. Zachary KnightGreat musical video about online trolling. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nS-QeM2ne810/20/2014 - 2:46pm
Andrew EisenBut again, this whole thing is just too damn vague to form an opinion on.10/20/2014 - 2:40pm
Andrew EisenWithout the original communication, it's impossible to say if it could honestly be misconstrued as a friendly suggestion rather than an employer directive. However, it appears that subsequent emails should have cleared up any doubt.10/20/2014 - 2:40pm
Andrew EisenThose aren't the owner's words, they're Chris Dahlen's. For what it's worth, we do see an email from Gonzalez stating "you've already broken the only rule we set for you!!!!!!!"10/20/2014 - 2:38pm
Michael ChandraSo really the guy's own words strike me as "wah! How dare you disagree with me!" behaviour, which is the sort of childish attitude I am unfortunately not surprised by.10/20/2014 - 2:17pm
Michael ChandraCorrect AE, but then again the owner's own words are about "wishes", not about an order. No "we told him not to", but going against his wishes.10/20/2014 - 2:16pm
Matthew Wilsonyup. sadly that has been true for awhile.10/20/2014 - 2:10pm
james_fudgewelcome to 2014 politics. Increasingly fought online10/20/2014 - 1:54pm
E. Zachary KnightIt is honestly a shame that anyone has to publicly state they are against such vile behavior, but that is the sad life we live.10/20/2014 - 1:46pm
E. Zachary KnightDecided to publicly reiterate my opposition to harassment campaigns. http://randomtower.com/2014/10/just-stop-with-the-harassment-and-bullying-campaigns-already/10/20/2014 - 1:45pm
Andrew EisenMichael Chandra - Unless I overlooked it, we haven't seen how the directive to not talk about whatever he wasn't supposed to talk about was phrased so it’s hard to say if it could have been misconstrued as a suggestion or not.10/20/2014 - 12:35pm
Andrew EisenHey, the second to last link is the relevant one! He actually did say "let them suffer." Although, he didn't say it to the other person he was bickering with.10/20/2014 - 12:29pm
Neo_DrKefkahttps://archive.today/F14zZ https://archive.today/SxFas https://archive.today/1upoI https://archive.today/0hu7i https://archive.today/NsPUC https://archive.today/fLTQv https://archive.today/Wpz8S10/20/2014 - 11:21am
Andrew EisenNeo_DrKefka - "Attacking"? Interesting choice of words. Also interesting that you quoted something that wasn't actually said. Leaving out a relevant link, are you?10/20/2014 - 11:04am
quiknkoldugh. I want to know why the hell Mozerella Sticks are 4 dollars at my works cafeteria...are they cooked in Truffle Oil?10/20/2014 - 10:41am
Neo_DrKefkaAnti-Gamergate supporter Robert Caruso attacks female GamerGate supporter by also attacking another cause she support which is the situation happening in Syia “LET SYRIANS SUFFER” https://archive.today/F14zZ https://archive.today/Wpz8S10/20/2014 - 10:18am
Neo_DrKefkaThat is correct in an At-Will state you or the employer can part ways at any time. However Florida also has laws on the books about "Wrongful combinations against workers" http://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2012/448.04510/20/2014 - 10:07am
james_fudgehe'd die if he couldn't talk about Wii U :)10/20/2014 - 9:16am
Michael ChandraBy the way, I am not saying Andrew should stop talking about Wii-U. I find it quite nice. :)10/20/2014 - 8:53am
 

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