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Windows Piracy Privacy

Underground Piracy Sites Want To Block Windows 10 Users 394

An anonymous reader writes: Some smaller pirate sites have become concerned about Windows 10 system phoning home too many hints regarding that the users are accessing their site. Therefore, the pirate administrators have started blocking Windows 10 users from accessing the BitTorrent trackers that the sites host. The first ones to hit the alarm button were iTS, which have posted a statement and started redirecting Windows 10 users to a YouTube video called Windows 10 is a Tool to Spy on Everything You Do. Additionally, according to TorrentFreak, two other similar dark web torrent trackers are also considering following suit. "As we all know, Microsoft recently released Windows 10. You as a member should know, that we as a site are thinking about banning the OS from FSC," said one of the FSC staff. Likewise, in a message to their users, a BB admin said something similar: "We have also found [Windows 10] will be gathering information on users' P2P use to be shared with anti piracy group."
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Underground Piracy Sites Want To Block Windows 10 Users

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  • Context (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 23, 2015 @07:41AM (#50373351)

    Not in the summary:

    "The anti-piracy group the pirate site admins are referring to is MarkMonitor, a US company that specializes in online corporate identity protection, one that is known to have work with the MPAA in protecting its copyrighted materials, but one that has also worked with Microsoft in the past, to protect Windows users from online identity theft and scam campaigns."

    • by Anonymous Coward

      These companies keep giving us reasons to pirate. Like DRM, embedded spyware, crippled features, forced internet connection to even use it, and so on. And they expect us to pay money for their crap when a free version without these limitations exists? How stupid do they think we are?

      Fuck Microsoft, fuck Windows 10. Pirate it and spread the torrent to all your friends. Let's bring down the evil empire!

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by jonwil ( 467024 )

        Even better, dont use Windows 10 at all. Do what I am doing and stick with Windows 7 (which doesn't have all this crap) or if you dont need any windows-only software (e.g. games) switch to an alternative OS.

        • by ilsaloving ( 1534307 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @09:06AM (#50373685)

          You may wanna check your list of updates. Microsoft has already added a bunch of telemetry tools in the guise of "important updates".

          • Care to elaborate on which ones, a link to this info, etc? I've never heard of this and interested in reading more... yet Google searching is turning up very vague information on this topic...

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by amiga3D ( 567632 )

          The simplest thing is to use something like a Raspberry Pi for torrents and such. As a bonus you can leave it up 24/7 as it uses only a tiny amount of electricity. For my banking and the like I have a laptop that runs linux from a CD. I'd never use Windows for anything I was worried about being seen as it's designed to be backdoored for ages now. They can watch me play games all that they want.

          • IF you are going to do that, get a diskless Synology NAS for $99 and put in a disk. It comes with a kickass torrent client that shuts off seeds as soon as the DL finishes. It will only cost a little bit more than getting a pi up and running and is much more suited to the task.
            • Yeah. Seems like a much better solution. I've tried the Raspberry Pi solution before, and trying to use the SD card (Class 10) to store the torrent caused the raspberry Pi to crash. I tried a USB flash drive, which made the device not crash, but the downloads still couldn't keep up to my internet connection. I'm not sure how well a synology would work, but it can't be worse than an old Raspberry Pi. I just use an old PC with a couple 1 TB disks stuck in it. There's more power friendly stuff if old PCs a

              • by amiga3D ( 567632 )

                I have heard some people have problems with different flash drives but I don't know what brand they're using. The early models had a lot more compatibility problems. So far I've had no problems with saving to a USB flash drive.

  • I knew it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stongef ( 1149711 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @07:49AM (#50373371)
    When Microsoft offered Windows 10, I first thought it was an interesting move. Then I remembered who we are talking about here. Of course they will have back-door deals with the media industry. And of course once everyone who had a pirated version of the OS upgrades to the legit free version, they'll slowly move to a subscription model. The future of every business venture nowadays is recurring revenues. Water is wet, rocks are hard and Microsoft is Microsoft. The universe balances. And I'm staying with Xubuntu and VMWare ...
    • And of course once everyone who had a pirated version of the OS upgrades to the legit free version,

      This is false. A pirated may (not will get upgraded to Win 10, but it will remain pirated. This does not change the legit status. http://www.computerworld.com/a... [computerworld.com]
    • Re: I knew it. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 23, 2015 @08:22AM (#50373489)

      When Windows 8 came out, I said to myself: "I'll skip it, Widows 7 is running fine for me".

      When Windows 8.1 came out, I said to myself: "I'm glad I stayed on Windows 7, those MS jackoffs pulled another Windows ME".

      When Wine Windows 10 came out, I said to myself: "I'll skip it, Windows 7 is running fine for me"...

      Windows 7 EOS 2020.

    • Yes, and the same people freaking out about the data Microsoft collects are the same ones using Google Chrome which reports even more useful information than anything Microsoft collects. So much FUD here. Anyway, running Tails through a VM + VPN is probably enough.
  • Good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 23, 2015 @08:00AM (#50373407)

    Windows 10 is malware in its default seutup. This phone home shit should be blacked so they suffer for being so anti-user.

    • by Khyber ( 864651 )

      All Windows 10 installs except Enterprise are malware in ANY setup configuration. Enterprise is the only one you can do a full disabling of telemetry on.

  • Firewalls? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Mister Transistor ( 259842 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @08:18AM (#50373469) Journal

    I predict a strong market for a nice little generic Microsoft-filtering hardware firewall devices. Maybe even an intelligent one that will allow incoming updates and scrub or anonymize outgoing requests.

    Kickstarter, anyone?

    • You could do a kickstarter or just start preparing an open firewall rules list, that could be used by one of the open source routers or possibly by Windows itself?

      We could ask Microsoft to be transparent about what the OS phones home for and what else is shared beyond the network.

      • You could do a kickstarter or just start preparing an open firewall rules list, that could be used by one of the open source routers or possibly by Windows itself?

        We could ask Microsoft to be transparent about what the OS phones home for and what else is shared beyond the network.

        you can ask

        microsoft will say no and laugh

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        The telemetry in Windows 10 bypasses the hosts file. You'd need an external firewall. The problem with that is that Windows (reportedly) throws a fit and stops working if you block off certain addresses.

        • "The telemetry in Windows 10 bypasses the hosts file."

          APK is gonna have an aneurysm!
          • So at least SOMETHING good will come out of Win10?

    • by houghi ( 78078 )

      I wanted to start a project, but the domain linux.org was already taken.

      Also I predict that the majority of people will not give a shit and as long as they make money, it dosn't matter who says no.

    • pfSense or OpenWRT + OpenVPN. You can set them up to route all of your traffic automatically.

    • Interesting idea. And you could add an inline crypto system that automatically encrypts everything when you send packets to someone else who has one (including servers). Of course you'd need to bring one with you when you travel, to stay safe when using public wifi.
    • Is it possible to get an Arduino or Raspberry Pi that just acts as a nice little firewall, and that I can modify with pre-set profiles?

      Would it be powerful enough?

  • by Drakonblayde ( 871676 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @08:26AM (#50373505)

    .... to get people to stop pirating Windows. Make it spy on the pirates!

    • by GuB-42 ( 2483988 )

      They don't really want to make people stop pirating Windows. Especially now that there are free, non-geek alternatives like ChromeOS.
      They are, however interested it tracking pirates. Many pirates are simply people unsatisfied with the legal offering and potential customers.

  • It took me a few years and getting over being annoyed by people who say what I'm about to say all the time, but fuck it...just switch to Linux...Mint or something. I like Xfce. That is all.

    • BSD runs everything linux does, and then some. You have a choice of GUI. You can use X windows or the Mac OS GUI.

    • Sorry to burst your bubble, but...

      Linux can't control https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik... [wikipedia.org] or https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik... [wikipedia.org]

      Intel has been setting aside secondary CPU power for invisible applications since forever. Linux ain't keeping your stuff safe except from the lowest level of Big Brother types; the Small-to-Medium Brothers, I suppose.

      Intel also does fabrication in Israel. That's where the Mossad live.

      How tough is it to capture your keyboard strokes through System Management hardware? Not at

    • Or at the very least run Linux in a VM and encrypt everything that goes in or out of the VM by using a good proxy service. Probably QEMU is the safest type of VM, followed by the Open Source version of Virtual Box (without the closed-source extensions). Anything closed source such as VMWare may have it's own spy payload for all we know.

      Personally I use Linux anyway but I can't imagine using Linux in a VM to be any more complicated than the confusing Torrent sites with their phoney links that drive users
  • by aaaaaaargh! ( 1150173 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @08:35AM (#50373545)

    At least in the EU I see no long future for Windows 10's illegal built-in surveillance tools. The EULA violates local laws in many EU countries and probably also EU law, and it is only a matter of time until some EU commission will put an end to it.

    Or, at least I hope so, because at one point or another I'll be forced to upgrade to this pile of shit. :/

    • And then came the TTIP!
    • That's a good point. If there's one thing I take very seriously it's privacy, so I won't be upgrading to windows 10. I'm not paranoid or whatever but I'm really starting to feel very uncomfortable with mass corporate data-harvesting, which becomes mass government data harvesting very easily. I guess I'll have to run programs without an adequate open source alternative such as photoshop in an emulator or something. However in the unlikely event that the EU raps their knuckles I might consider hanging in ther

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The EULA violates local laws in many EU countries and probably also EU law, and it is only a matter of time until some EU commission will put an end to it.

      The situation is much more dramatic than that.

      There is no feasible way that a Windows 10 system can be used on a machine that collects or processes credit-card data (think: PCI DSS security standards), stores medical data (think: HIPAA security requirements), holds confidential legal documents (think: any lawyer's office anywhere), contains NDA-protected or trade-secret documents, or holds documents that contain "insider information" as defined by the SEC.

      Remember that it's Microsoft itself that gets to dec

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      The EULA doesn't violate the law, it's just invalid as contract law doesn't allow EU citizens to agree to some of the terms even if they click "I accept".

      It will only be illegal if Microsoft decides to actually abuse this stuff. The clause about checking for pirated games is most likely referring to just stuff from the Windows Store, and they might be able to get away with checking for known cracked exe signatures and deleting them as "malware", but any actual spying will fall foul of data protection laws.

      • by bmo ( 77928 )

        "and they might be able to get away with checking for known cracked exe signatures and deleting them as "malware", but any actual spying will fall foul of data protection laws."

        This actually happens if you have Windows Defender set to delete malware automagically. I'm not sure if it's set that way by default in 10, but I've seen at least one person lose hard-to-find 10 year old cracks that Defender labeled as "malware" after an install of 10.

        The more I look at this stuff from the relative safety of the Lin

  • Markmonitor complaints date from over 10 years.

    'News' would have been to show us a method on how to block them or prevent Windows 10 do do so.

  • Not just Windows 10 (Score:5, Informative)

    by ilsaloving ( 1534307 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @09:16AM (#50373743)

    http://arstechnica.com/informa... [arstechnica.com]

    The thing is, it's not just Windows 10. If you regularly update your machines, Microsoft has already added additional telemetry tools to Windows 7 and 8.

    http://www.infoworld.com/artic... [infoworld.com]

    What really sucks for me is that I *like* Windows 10. I run it in a VM on my Mac, and I've noticed an immediate performance improvement, especially with boot ups.

    But from all the media reports, it looks like Windows 10 is turning into a conspiracy theorists bukake dream. And unless there is very little backlash to this, I can see Microsoft easily porting the rest of their privacy invading tools to their previous OSes.

  • Has anyone looked into blocking unwanted communication with mother Microsoft? Using host file, or other techniques (example: router) to keep the system from communicating with servers...
  • by FrozenGeek ( 1219968 ) on Sunday August 23, 2015 @04:26PM (#50375937)

    Question: Does Windows 10 spy on what you do using a VM? If not, run your preferred *NIX variant in a VM under Windows 10 and do whatever you like.

    If it does spy on your activities within a VM, consider flipping things around: *NIX running a VM that contains Windows 10.

    I do understand that there is value to MS in sending data home and, yes, there is some value to us in having data sent home to MS. That said, if it is out of my control, the cost is far greater than any value I receive, so it ain't gonna happen. I was intending to upgrade one of my computers to Windows 10 Enterprise, but until I can confirm that no data get phoned home outside my control, not a chance. And in case Satya is listening, yes, I've managed to discourage my employer from upgrading to Windows 10 (given that security is a major consideration for us, data being phoned home outside of our control is a non-starter).

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