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TBTF for 1995-06-07: Beware pkzip 3.00; an extremely illegal T shirt

Keith Dawson (dawson dot tbtf at gmail dot com)
Wed, 7 Jun 1995 20:24:04 -0400



>>From the daily message
on The World at
Software Tool & Die:


pkzip version 3.00 is a Trojan horse

The popular pc utility pkzip/pkunzip has not been updated. We're
getting a number of reports that someone has created a file called
pkz300b.zip or pkz300.zip, ostensibly a new version; which is in fact
just a program that will erase your hard disk. So, if you see it,
don't download it.

[Consider this hearsay for now. The staff at world.std.com are ordinarily
careful and reliable so I would treat this warning seriously until/unless
you hear otherwise. I'll let you know if the warning shows up as a CERT
bulletin.]

>>From the Scout Report:


GASNET Anesthesiology Gopher server provides a variety of services to the
anesthesiology community, and is the home of Educational Synopses in
Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine (The Online Journal of
Anesthesiology) and prepublished abstracts of the Journal of Clinical
Monitoring and the Journal of Neurosurgical Anesthesia.
gopher to: gasnet.med.nyu.edu

The Cannes Film Festival awards listed on the Web site, along with the
"Buzz" and gossip from Cannes.
http://www.interactive8.com:80/cannes/welcome/welcome.html

>>From Infoworld:


[I don't normally pass on items from the outlaw side of the cryptography
debate, but this one is too good to ignore. It's from Cringely's column
in Infoworld and concerns a Web site in England where you can order a T
shirt that is extremely illegal in America. A wonderful example of how
hard it's going to be to stuff the crypto genie back in its bottle.]

This little number comes in basic black and features a silk-screened three-
line perl script that implements the RSA public key algorithm. The US govt,
in its infinite wisdom, thinks people outsdie the United States don't know
this algorithm. Of course the perl script was written in England, but that's
just America with a funny accent, right? The T-shirts, which are legally
classified as munitions, carry a $1 million fine and 10 years in prison for
each violation. Just owning the shirt is illegal in France, Iran, Iraq, and
Russia, where all crypto code is illegal. Gotta have one? Try
http://dcs.ex.ac.uk/~aba/rsa/.

[The site also has a bar-coded version of the 3-line perl script, which it
suggests as appropriate for tatooing on the torsos of illegal immigrants...
after which it would be a crime to deport them...]


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______________________________________________________
Keith Dawson dawson dot tbtf at gmail dot com dawson@atria.com
Layer of ash separates morning and evening milk.