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Does that mean Nikon's auto-photo mode is illegal?

 
 
RichA
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      07-09-2011
The mode that allows you to take photos over a time period,
automatically. That mode is used now for wildlife photography as one
example.

I don't quite get why what this guy did was illegal.

CNN:

8 July 2011 Last updated at 10:54 ET
Secret agents raid Apple store webcam 'artist'

The US Secret Service has raided the home of an artist who collected
images from webcams in a New York Apple store.

Kyle McDonald is said to have installed software that photographed
people looking at laptops then uploaded the pictures to a website.

Mr McDonald said he had obtained permission from a security guard to
take photos inside the store.

Apple declined to comment. However, the Secret Service confirmed that
its electronic crime division was involved.

A spokesperson told the BBC that the investigation was taking place
under US Code Title 18 /1030 which relates to "Fraud and related
activity in connection with computers."

Offences covered by the legislation carry a maximum penalty of 20
years in prison.

Writing on Twitter, Mr McDonald said: "@secretservice just stopped by
to investigate [web address removed] and took my laptop. Please assume
they're reading any e-mails you send me."

No arrests had been made in the case as of 8 July.
Staring

Kyle McDonald's images were uploaded to a page on the blogging site
Tumblr.

In the description of People Staring at Computers, the project is
described as: "A photographic intervention. Custom app installed
around NYC, taking a picture every minute and uploading it if a face
is found in the image.

"Exhibited on site with a remotely triggered app that displayed the
photos full screen on every available computer."

The site features a video and series of photographs, apparently
showing shoppers trying-out computers.

Comments on the individuals by visitors to the site are also attached
to the images.

Mr McDonald, writing on Twitter, said that he had been advised not to
comment on the case by the online freedom group the Electronic
Frontier Foundation.
 
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nospam
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
In article
<(E-Mail Removed)>,
RichA <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> The mode that allows you to take photos over a time period,
> automatically. That mode is used now for wildlife photography as one
> example.
>
> I don't quite get why what this guy did was illegal.


because he installed software without permission on computers he did
not own, which took photos of people without their knowledge and sent
it to his own server.

in this case the software only took photos, but he could have just as
easily installed a key logger.

in other words, it's computer fraud.

> CNN:
>
> 8 July 2011 Last updated at 10:54 ET
> Secret agents raid Apple store webcam 'artist'
>
> The US Secret Service has raided the home of an artist who collected
> images from webcams in a New York Apple store.
>
> Kyle McDonald is said to have installed software that photographed
> people looking at laptops then uploaded the pictures to a website.
>
> Mr McDonald said he had obtained permission from a security guard to
> take photos inside the store.
>
> Apple declined to comment. However, the Secret Service confirmed that
> its electronic crime division was involved.
>
> A spokesperson told the BBC that the investigation was taking place
> under US Code Title 18 /1030 which relates to "Fraud and related
> activity in connection with computers."

 
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PeterN
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
On 7/9/2011 1:23 PM, RichA wrote:
> The mode that allows you to take photos over a time period,
> automatically. That mode is used now for wildlife photography as one
> example.
>
> I don't quite get why what this guy did was illegal.
>


<possible plagery deleted>

You don't sere because you have no basic understanding. Perhaps if you
gave an original fact and law based analysis, you would get a meaningful
response. Don't post and expect others to analyze it for you.


--
Peter
 
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nospam
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, Paul Furman
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> I don't think it qualifies as fraud, because he's not stealing money or
> anything like that... perhaps paid by some gallery to exhibit it? I
> don't know what the hell the Secret Service should have to do with this
> though I can imagine someone captured in the work complaining, but maybe
> a law suit would be their only recourse.


<http://www.secretservice.gov/criminal.shtml>

Computer Fraud - Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 1030,
authorizes the Secret Service to investigate computer crimes.
Violations enforced under this statute include unauthorized access to
protected computers, theft of data such as personal identification
used to commit identity theft, denial of service attacks used for
extortion or disruption of e-commerce and malware (malicious
software) distribution to include viruses intended for financial gain.

looks like a perfect match.

> > in this case the software only took photos, but he could have just as
> > easily installed a key logger.

>
> Could have but I don't see any indication of that intent. The guy asked
> store security for permission and was above board other than to the
> store visitors.


he claims he asked someone to take pictures, not to install software on
their machines to take photos without the consent of the subjects.

plus, the security guard is not an apple employee so they can't
authorize it anyway.

> > in other words, it's computer fraud.

>
> wiki: "In criminal law, a fraud is an intentional deception made for
> personal gain or to damage another individual"


his personal gain was the collection of photos taken without the
knowledge of the subjects and also taken on private property using
equipment he didn't own.

> Maybe could be argued as embarrassing but that's about it.


no, it's actually quite a bit worse than that.
 
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Bruce
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      07-09-2011
Paul Furman <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>nospam wrote:
>> in other words, it's computer fraud.

>
>wiki: "In criminal law, a fraud is an intentional deception made for
>personal gain or to damage another individual"
>
>Maybe could be argued as embarrassing but that's about it.



The issue is surely covered by the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, which
would appear not to be limited to fraud.

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

 
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J. Clarke
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      07-09-2011
In article <090720111214413805%(E-Mail Removed)>,
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)d says...
>
> In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, Paul Furman
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> > I don't think it qualifies as fraud, because he's not stealing money or
> > anything like that... perhaps paid by some gallery to exhibit it? I
> > don't know what the hell the Secret Service should have to do with this
> > though I can imagine someone captured in the work complaining, but maybe
> > a law suit would be their only recourse.

>
> <http://www.secretservice.gov/criminal.shtml>
>
> Computer Fraud - Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 1030,
> authorizes the Secret Service to investigate computer crimes.
> Violations enforced under this statute include unauthorized access to
> protected computers, theft of data such as personal identification
> used to commit identity theft, denial of service attacks used for
> extortion or disruption of e-commerce and malware (malicious
> software) distribution to include viruses intended for financial gain.
>
> looks like a perfect match.
>
> > > in this case the software only took photos, but he could have just as
> > > easily installed a key logger.

> >
> > Could have but I don't see any indication of that intent. The guy asked
> > store security for permission and was above board other than to the
> > store visitors.

>
> he claims he asked someone to take pictures, not to install software on
> their machines to take photos without the consent of the subjects.
>
> plus, the security guard is not an apple employee so they can't
> authorize it anyway.
>
> > > in other words, it's computer fraud.

> >
> > wiki: "In criminal law, a fraud is an intentional deception made for
> > personal gain or to damage another individual"

>
> his personal gain was the collection of photos taken without the
> knowledge of the subjects and also taken on private property using
> equipment he didn't own.
>
> > Maybe could be argued as embarrassing but that's about it.

>
> no, it's actually quite a bit worse than that.


Might prove to be an interesting case. For example they say they can
investigate "unauthorized access to protected computers". But what is a
"protected computer" and what is "unauthorized access"? If a security
guard said that he could take pictures was that "authorization" and if
the computers were in a location easily accessible to a member of the
public and not set up with passwords were they "protected"?

The whole area of computer crime is an area of the law that is still in
the formative stage.

I can't see where taking pictures of people on private property using
equipment installed by or at the behest of the owner or lessee of the
property would be any kind of "fraud"--if it is then all use of security
cameras is "fraud" and that doesn't pass the giggle test.

Someone other than the property owner or lessee taking data captured by
those cameras and diverting it for his own use is another story--there
it can be argued that he defrauded the rightful owner of that data of
any profits that he made from its use.

It's unlikely that the persons photographed would have any recourse
unless they could argue that their likeness was used for commercial
purposes without their consent.




 
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Mike
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
On 09/07/2011 1:23 PM, RichA wrote:
>
> The mode that allows you to take photos over a time period,
> automatically. That mode is used now for wildlife photography as one
> example.
>
> I don't quite get why what this guy did was illegal.
>

Trespassing, unlawful access to computers (hacking, hence the US Secret
Service) to start with.

> CNN:
>
> 8 July 2011 Last updated at 10:54 ET
> Secret agents raid Apple store webcam 'artist'
>
> The US Secret Service has raided the home of an artist who collected
> images from webcams in a New York Apple store.
>
> Kyle McDonald is said to have installed software that photographed
> people looking at laptops then uploaded the pictures to a website.
>

Unauthorized use of private property (Conversion in criminal code terms)
Apple owns those computers until they are sold. Neither Apple nor the
store management granted permission to install software onto those
computers.

>
> Mr McDonald said he had obtained permission from a security guard to
> take photos inside the store.
>

Irrelevant, the security guard has no authority to grant permission to
install software onto private property, nor can he grant permission to
"take photos in the store" If he was an employee of the Apple Store, he
could authorize photos within the shop, however he certainly could NOT
grant permission to use images of the customers without their consent. I
would say it's the same as if a security guard gave a third party access
to your kitchen to make lunch, or in the valet parking to use your car.
>
> Apple declined to comment. However, the Secret Service confirmed that
> its electronic crime division was involved.
>
> A spokesperson told the BBC that the investigation was taking place
> under US Code Title 18 /1030 which relates to "Fraud and related
> activity in connection with computers."
>

He installed remote software onto privately owned computers. So let's
presume that you bought that MacBook, took it home. If he has access to
remotely control the webcam, what else can he access? Would you enjoy
finding a photo of you sitting around at home in your skivvies and bunny
slippers. Because "some artist" had a dumb artwork blog? Apple I would
imagine would be very liable, as they sold the infected MacBook.

>
> Offences covered by the legislation carry a maximum penalty of 20
> years in prison.
>

Sounds good, give him the max.

[edit]
>
> Mr McDonald, writing on Twitter, said that he had been advised not to
> comment on the case by the online freedom group the Electronic
> Frontier Foundation.
>

Good advice, which Mr. McDonald seemed to ignore.

Mike
 
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Mike
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
On 09/07/2011 5:25 PM, Mike wrote:
> On 09/07/2011 1:23 PM, RichA wrote:
>
>> Mr McDonald, writing on Twitter, said that he had been advised not to
>> comment on the case by the online freedom group the Electronic
>> Frontier Foundation.
> >

> Good advice, which Mr. McDonald seemed to ignore.
>
> Mike


And inspite of legal advice, he continues

http://peoplestaringatcomputers.tumblr.com/

Mike

 
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Mike
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
On 09/07/2011 5:40 PM, Savageduck wrote:
>
> I notice the last shot was of a resident Apple Store "Geek" with a "hand
> to the face" by-stander behind him. I wonder if that was when the reveal
> was discovered and the "work of art" cut short.
>

I wondered that too. I would guess somebody in the Apple Store, their
net admin or their ISP noticed odd network traffic. Saw it as hacking
and notified the US Secret Service (USSS). I doubt the USSS found it by
accident.

Mike

 
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Mike
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-09-2011
On 09/07/2011 6:08 PM, Savageduck wrote:
>
> This from "Mashable.com"
>
> "Over the course of the project, McDonald set up roughly 100 Apple store
> computers to call his servers every minute. That’s a lot of network
> traffic, and he learned that Apple monitors traffic in its stores when
> he received a photo from a Cupertino computer of what appeared to be an
> Apple technician. The technician had apparently traced the traffic to
> the site McDonald used to upload the program to Apple Store computers —
> and installed it himself.
> McDonald figured that Apple had decided the program wasn't a big deal.
> That was until four Secret Service men in suits woke him up on Thursday
> morning with a search warrant for computer fraud. They confiscated two
> computers, an iPod, and two flash drives, and told McDonald that Apple
> would contact him separately."
>
> I guess "contact separately" means Apple's attorneys will be contacting
> you soon.
>

I can imagine years of civil litigation, as all his "subjects" didn't
sign releases, so each has a right to sue his ass to the stone ages...

Mike

 
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