Saturday, December 17, 2005

RIAA Sued for Hacking

A WOMAN who was sued by the Recording Industry of America for file-sharing has countersued the outfit for hacking.
Tanya Andersen, a 41-year old disabled single mother living in Oregon, has countersued the RIAA for Oregon RICO violations, fraud, invasion of privacy, abuse of process, electronic trespass, violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, negligent misrepresentation. She is claiming hurt feelings and "outrage", and deceptive business practices.
According to court documents here, Anderson said the record industry has been abusing the law courts and waged a public relations and public threat campaign targeting file sharing.
She claims that the RIAA hired an outfit called MediaSentry to invade private home computers and collect personal information. Based on private information allegedly extracted from these personal home computers, the record companies have reportedly filed lawsuits against more than 13,500 anonymous "John Does".
She claims the record companies provide the personal information to Settlement Support Center, which engages in outlawed and deceptive debt collection and other illegal conduct to extract money from the people allegedly identified from the secret lawsuits.
She said that she has never downloaded or shared music online. She has not infringed on any of plaintiffs’ alleged copyrighted interest. However, she has been a victim of the record companies’ public threat campaign.
The RIAA falsely claimed that Andersen had been an "unnamed" defendant who was being sued in federal court in the District of Columbia. She was never named in that lawsuit and never received service of a summons and complaint, she said.
When Andersen contacted Settlement Support Center, she was advised that her personal home computer had been secretly entered by the record companies’ agents, MediaSentry.
Apparently she had been up at 4:24am downloading "gangster rap" music under the login name “gotenkito@kazaa.com.” Andersen does not like "gangster rap", does not recognise the name "gotenkito", is not awake at 4:24 a.m. and has never downloaded music.
The Settlement Support Center threatened that if Andersen did not immediately pay them, the record companies would bring an expensive and disruptive federal lawsuit using her name and they would get a judgment for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Looks like this one will run for a while.

See The Inquirer: RIAA sued by victim | digg story | Blog index

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