Comcast hijacks browsers for Big Content

Because no one in the US thought it was a good idea to reign in Big Content, it is now acceptable for an ISP to hijack a suspect pirate’s browser.

The ISP Comcast has revealed how it will deal with its customers under the new six strikes and you’re out law.

After four alerts the ISP will hijack web browsers of suspected serial pirates with annoying pop-ups. This will effectively make it impossible to browse the internet. The pop-up will only go away after the customer “resolves the issue” with a Customer Security Assurance professional.

In common with other ISPs, Comcast will start out with friendly alerts informing customers that their account has been used to share copyrighted material, accompanied with an email listing details of the alleged infringement.

But after four warnings, repeated offenders will then enter the “mitigation phase” during which their service will be interrupted.

It is not clear how customers will be able to resolve the matter and what they will have to do remains a mystery.

The ISP insists that you will not lose your account under the copyright alert program, it is just that you will not be able to use it.

Comcast assures its customers that the browser hijack system has been tested for years, and that it should work smoothly. Clearly it believes that its technology will not be sinkable.

According to Torrent Freak, the technology in question has been used to alert subscribers when their internet access device is infected by a malicious bot. It has not been tested against a user who fought against it.

Comcast can be asked to hand over IP addresses of repeat infringers if they do not stop being pirates.

The move will mean an end to the Open Wireless Movement. This has been allowing people to share their internet connection with neighbours or complete strangers.

What is more likely to happen is that VPN providers and BitTorrent proxies will make a killing. Real pirates know how to avoid detection.

It looks like the owners of automatic weapons have more freedoms in the US than those who use the internet.