Monday, November 30, 2009
The DOJ Gets Its Men
"Of all the sinister things that Internet viruses do, this might be the worst: They can make you an unsuspecting collector of child pornography. Heinous pictures and videos can be deposited on computers by viruses--the malicious programs better known for swiping your credit card numbers. In this twist, it's your reputation that's stolen. ... Pranksters or someone trying to frame you can tap viruses to make it appear that you surf illegal Web sites. ... An Associated Press investigation found cases in which innocent people have been branded as pedophiles after their co-workers or loved ones stumbled upon child porn placed on a PC through a virus. It can cost victims hundreds of thousands of dollars to prove their innocence. ... 'It's an example of the old "dog ate my homework" excuse,' says Phil Malone, director of the Cyberlaw Clinic at Harvard's Beckman Center for Internet & Society. 'The problem is, sometimes the dog does eat your homework.' ... An inspection for his defense revealed the laptop was severly infected. It was programmed to visit as many as 40 child porn sites per minute--an inhuman feat. ... Many prosecutors say blaming a computer virus for child porn is a new version of an old ploy. ... Virus defenses are no match for such evidence, says Damon King, trial attorney for the US [DOJ] Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. ... Computer exams can cost tens of thousands of dollars", Jordan Robertson at the Houston Chronicle, 15 November 2009, link: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/tech/news/6710095.html.
Pedophiles? For viewing internet porn? I would repeal these laws. Pronto. King, get a real job. Prosecute some rapists, kidnappers or truck highjackers. AUSAs love cases like porn infested computers. Why? They take no brains to file.