You can chalk this story down to being indicative of how wild a dumpster fire 2016 has been thus far, and we haven't even gotten to the US Election yet. But an 86-year-old woman in Ontario, Canada was recently embroiled in a spot of severe confusion after receiving an email claiming she had pirated a copy of horror FPS #Metro2033.
The main issue here is... the lady, who also goes by the name Christine McMillan, doesn't even know what or who a Metro 2033 is, let alone how to go about pirating said title. Though, somewhat outrageously, she is still liable for a fine of up to $5000, because society.
Dolled out by a private company named Canadian Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement (#CANIPRE), and dutifully forwarded by her internet service provider (ISP), the notice came as a total surprise to McMillan, as she would go onto discuss with Go Public.
“I found it quite shocking… I’m 86 years old. No one has access to my computer but me. Why would I download a war game?”
At first the email, issued under Canada's new Notice and Notice act, part of their new Copyright Modernization Act, came across to McMillan as a hoax. It didn't even go as far to concisely explain to her the ramifications of the act she didn't even commit in the first place.
"They didn't tell me how much I owed, they only told me that if I didn't comply, I would be liable for a fine of up to $5,000 and I could pay immediately by entering my credit card number."
But, the main issue here is Notice and Notice is in place to supposedly support both the accused and the accusers. But, naturally, like any man-made scheme, it is known to backfire, which in turn has given CANIPRE a not so savory reputation. Network security analyst Wil Knoll called their actions a "dragnet cash grab", and likened them to predators.
"It's preying on people that don't necessarily understand the system or the technology that surrounds it, and they're willing to pay out of court because they're scared."
And he went on to discuss just how easy it is to hack secured connections. Answer: pretty darn easy.
"It's very hard then to correlate, or nearly impossible, to correlate from that IP address to any individual that's inside the house, or to prove it forensically, especially if these infractions are happening months and months and months ago."
Mrs. McMillan lives in an apartment whose internet could have easily been leached for illegal purposes. Makes sense, right? Let the old lady take the fall for someone else's actions. But what McMillan and the countless others affected by this gross company don't realize is they don't actually have to hand over a single cent. The emails are simple notices.
Thankfully, the Canadian Government are looking into reforming the act come 2017. Couldn't come any sooner if you ask me. As for McMillan? Well, she's gonna stick to her guns and ignore the emails. And good on her, too!
What do you think? Are CANIPRE the carrion birds of the internet or are they doing good work?
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[Source: Go Public}