AfterDawn: Tech news

DVDs to get anti-theft chips?

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 10 May 2007 15:22 User comments (37)

DVDs to get anti-theft chips? We've seen all sorts of attempts to protect movies on DVD discs from "digital theft" but now technology is being pitched at studios to tackle physical theft from retailers. A chip, smaller than the head of a pin, would be placed literally onto a DVD disc along with a thin coating placed to stop DVD players from reading critical information from the disc. However, at a checkout a simple scan will activate the chip, sending out an electrical pulse making the thin coating transparent.
The radio frequency identification chip is made by NXP Semiconductors, based in the Netherlands, and the Radio Frequency Activation technology comes from Kestrel Wireless Inc., based in Emeryville. They expect to announce deals with Hollywood studios during the summer and said the technology could be used with other products like ink jet cartridges, flash memory drives and even flat-screen TVs.

The Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA) estimates that theft of entertainment products, including video games, adds up to $400 million in losses every year.

Source:
Yahoo

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37 user comments

110.5.2007 15:28

yeah yeah yeah what else is new?

210.5.2007 15:33

I give this technology a full 2 weeks before the scanners to activate the chips are sold on ebay.

310.5.2007 16:49

is this a joke or serious?

410.5.2007 17:12

Originally posted by Zeos:
I give this technology a full 2 weeks before the scanners to activate the chips are sold on ebay.
ding! ding! ding!

510.5.2007 17:44

Not even that, because they will probably make that illegal or really hard to get the scanners.

But, better yet, if it sends an electronic pulse through the disk all you would need to do is a hook up a nine-volt (or so) to some wires and send the shock through the disk.

Depending on what voltage is used you could probably accomplish the same thing with a phone charger or similar device instead.

610.5.2007 18:03

Why get the voltage right? Fry the damn thing with a strong electric pulse and be done with it.

710.5.2007 18:19

how many freakin' times does your checkout guy fail to properly deactivate that anti-theft stuff in your movie or cd or a freakin' tube of toothpaste??! i really don't want some kid who hates his job to determine whether or not the movie i buy at the store is gonna work or not when i get home. And you know how much crap they would give you if you tried to bring it back to get this dang thing deactivated... bad idea all around. if they can't successfully use the anti-theft "technology" they already are using in stores, what makes them think this will help?

810.5.2007 18:24

Originally posted by cheezy_P:
how many freakin' times does your checkout guy fail to properly deactivate that anti-theft stuff in your movie or cd or a freakin' tube of toothpaste??! i really don't want some kid who hates his job to determine whether or not the movie i buy at the store is gonna work or not when i get home. And you know how much crap they would give you if you tried to bring it back to get this dang thing deactivated... bad idea all around. if they can't successfully use the anti-theft "technology" they already are using in stores, what makes them think this will help?
I work for a large box retailer. The problem we have is people open up the case and take the DVD and dump the case. So this might work.

910.5.2007 18:46

This is going to cause chaos. They need to fix the bug they cant just let it out like that it wont be worth for the shops for the alarm bells to go off every time the disc gets scanned. Any more bright ideas guys.

1010.5.2007 18:52

Quote:
Originally posted by cheezy_P:
how many freakin' times does your checkout guy fail to properly deactivate that anti-theft stuff in your movie or cd or a freakin' tube of toothpaste??! i really don't want some kid who hates his job to determine whether or not the movie i buy at the store is gonna work or not when i get home. And you know how much crap they would give you if you tried to bring it back to get this dang thing deactivated... bad idea all around. if they can't successfully use the anti-theft "technology" they already are using in stores, what makes them think this will help?
I work for a large box retailer. The problem we have is people open up the case and take the DVD and dump the case. So this might work.
Don't worry, I'll steal your activator as well.

1110.5.2007 19:38

$400 million to the movie industry is the equivalent of a dollar to a person, hell Spider-Man 3 cost more than $400 million to make.

1210.5.2007 19:58

DON'T BE FOOLED! Read the following article:

http://www.afterdawn.com/news/archive/7940.cfm

1310.5.2007 20:08

And who exactly is going to pay for R&D costs, licensing, implementation, manufacturing, equipping retailers with 'activation scanners', etc., etc. ???

So here's my wallet... and which way do I bend now ?

1411.5.2007 4:18

Quote:
Originally posted by cheezy_P:
how many freakin' times does your checkout guy fail to properly deactivate that anti-theft stuff in your movie or cd or a freakin' tube of toothpaste??! i really don't want some kid who hates his job to determine whether or not the movie i buy at the store is gonna work or not when i get home. And you know how much crap they would give you if you tried to bring it back to get this dang thing deactivated... bad idea all around. if they can't successfully use the anti-theft "technology" they already are using in stores, what makes them think this will help?
I work for a large box retailer. The problem we have is people open up the case and take the DVD and dump the case. So this might work.
maybe a little better security inside the store might prevent people from having the time/privacy to start opening crap up and taking it apart. I don't think i have ever been in a store where no one has walked by in the time that it would take to rip open a dvd case and take the disc out. unless you are talking about k-mart... no one goes to k-mart any more... maybe cameras might be a good idea?? just a thought... besides if this does work and the little punk who stole 'jackass 2' or some other crappy movie from your store, gets home and cant play the disc... you, the retailer, are still out a dvd with no compensation whatsoever. so how, again is this going to help retailers?

1511.5.2007 6:11

Quote:
unless you are talking about k-mart... no one goes to k-mart any more...
All the Kmarts I've seen have the DVDs locked up behind glass. Problem solved?

1611.5.2007 6:54

Since the seller or maker will have to activate the chip if you bring it in later this is an idiotic idea.

Or will a failed, flawed chip get the same response as a scratched disk? -- consumer screwed.

Are they going to insist the consumer has to keep a receipt for the lifetime of the disk?

1711.5.2007 7:35

And so what stops the video being recorded directly from the DVD player to a different hardware recorder?

-Mike

1811.5.2007 8:58

Quote:
I don't think i have ever been in a store where no one has walked by in the time that it would take to rip open a dvd case and take the disc out.
If you come to SD, you will find that there are many times that you can steal a movie. With a smaller population, you can get by with about anything.

1911.5.2007 11:08

Quote:
I don't think i have ever been in a store where no one has walked by in the time that it would take to rip open a dvd case and take the disc out.
Well, when the store is open 24 hours, its easy. All the person has to do is wander to an area and use a razor blade to cut the plastic wrap along the seam.

2011.5.2007 11:45
slmh1296
Inactive

What I find funny is by law we have the right to make a backup of anything we have purchased legally. So what would this chip do to that and what about all the home movies of family and friends most of us have on DVD. Try telling all those women with there weddings on DVD sorry the new player wont play those. How about all the personal pictures we have on DVD's. So in other words f*$% off we do not care.

2111.5.2007 11:59

Originally posted by slmh1296:
What I find funny is by law we have the right to make a backup of anything we have purchased legally. So what would this chip do to that and what about all the home movies of family and friends most of us have on DVD. Try telling all those women with there weddings on DVD sorry the new player wont play those. How about all the personal pictures we have on DVD's. So in other words f*$% off we do not care.
I don't think you quite understand what this story is about...

Good effort though, please re-read it.

2211.5.2007 12:57
WierdName
Inactive

Anyone else here remember the thread about the "blockbuster chip"?

EDIT- HEY! THEY OWE US ROYALTIES FOR THE IDEA!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 May 2007 @ 21:02

2311.5.2007 16:38

Bottom line, someone will find a way around it. And they have every right too. When I buy something I have no problem finding a way around the protection. ITS MINE. I WILL MAKE A BACKUP. BECAUSE I PAYED FOR IT AND I AM NOT GOING TO PAY TWICE CUZ IT GETS SOME STUPID LITTLE SCRATCH ON THE SURFACE. Those things are expensive.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 May 2007 @ 16:40

2411.5.2007 18:18

Why don't they just let us pay for the rights to a movie or song for a reasonable cost and it is indefinitely ours. When a newer technology comes around we can pay a small upgrade charge if we want it. Free of DRM of course. oh ya to make this relevant to the thread, no matter how this is is applied there will be an innocent consumer having problems with something they rightfully purchased.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 May 2007 @ 18:23

2511.5.2007 20:44

The dumbest thing about this article is the time it takes these fools to sit down and come up with so called new ideas to either stop piracy or some kind of theft to cds or dvds they could have been saving money and lowering prices on these high priced movies and music.

2611.5.2007 21:01
WierdName
Inactive

EDIT-my bad

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 May 2007 @ 21:01

2712.5.2007 2:23

man I think half the recent comments are by people who didn't read one word of the article. it has NOTHING to do with back ups.

2812.5.2007 10:12

thats y i wait for the movies to come out on dvd or what have they and rent them for 2 bucks

2912.5.2007 11:29

My giggle factor here is these kinda schemes end up being debated on darknet boards before they make it out of the schemer's brains! Then by the time it hits market, if it ever does, it's either cracked like a walnut on a freeway or seriously on it's way...

3012.5.2007 19:45

Originally posted by S2K:
man I think half the recent comments are by people who didn't read one word of the article. it has NOTHING to do with back ups.

Very true, haha.

3113.5.2007 10:37

What's with those magnets that some stores have hidden underneath the counter where you check out? I was buying something;I think it was Energizer batteries, and the damn security alarm went off when I walked out the door. So I came back in..... went to the counter. the cashier said she probably didn't pass the package over the magnet underneath the counter.. so I watched her, and there is a small red X on the countertop; she passed the package over that red X and it deactivated the anti-theft thing.
Anyone know what's up with that ? Just curoius because if that is the case, what's to stop somebody from hiding a magnet in your palm when you go shopping.... just pass the magnet over that plastic code thing......
Anyone know about this ???

3213.5.2007 15:59

Quote:
what's to stop somebody from hiding a magnet in your palm when you go shopping
lol, done that one before. But I wouldn't suggest it because it was at my job and the manager knew me, the only reason I would do it.

3314.5.2007 0:10

Quote:
I don't think you quite understand what this story is about... Good effort though, please re-read it.

man I think half the recent comments are by people who didn't read one word of the article. it has NOTHING to do with back ups.
Those who think that this chip is meant to prevent physical theft only, have to think twice because this is a "chocolate coating" for the main porpuse, which is to stop DVD players from reading disc which don't contain such chip, as explained in the following article:

http://www.afterdawn.com/news/archive/7940.cfm

Stores have every right to protect their merchandise from shoplifting, but not to keep tracks of a product once has been purchased and left the store, neither to use it to inforce a new DRM and with it forcing consumers to purchase DVD players which can read these chips.

If they really want to prevent shoplifting, but respect consumers privacy rights, then place all DVD movies in hard plastic RFID blisters which can't be opened easily... there's a difference from a chip phisically embedded on a disc, from a chip attached to a blister which you can dispose once you payed for the product.

3414.5.2007 3:06

I agree with ematrix, people. There is a good point there. Maybe the theft device will be deactivated... but what about anything else that goes with it? It could be a play to make sure that it cannot be copied which brings up the copy issue in this thread also. In the words of one of my favorite movie characters: "Think...think...think".

3514.5.2007 4:43

Quote:
Those who think that this chip is meant to prevent physical theft only, have to think twice because this is a "chocolate coating" for the main porpuse, which is to stop DVD players from reading disc which don't contain such chip, as explained in the following article:
http://www.afterdawn.com/news/archive/7940.cfm

You are 100% wrong.

That link you posted is not an "article". it was an another absurd rumor that wasn't even thought out by whoever posted it. there are hundreds of rumors about protection schemes that are simply impossible if you know aything abut it.

There are now over one billion dvd players out there. In my household we have 14. Four in desktops, two in laptops, two in game consoles, three attached to tvs, and two portable players and one in a car.

Fact is the scheme in the current article is also DOA. If 5% of the people bring back the disks, the costs will be enormous. if 0.01% are subject to class action by third generation used disk purchasers the costs will be multiples of aggregated retail theft losses.

what do you think sony's calculation was on offering to replace any heavy arcoos disk? do you think they were bing nice? or do you understand that if I bought one third hand it it hiccuped because of the heavy dvd non compliance arcoos I could be party to a massive class action?

What if one person had claimed that the sony disk would not play on their sony player and therefore they needed to use arcoos defeating software?

You do realize in the US at least you do not need to provide a receipt to have presumptive owenership on items like this? the retail outlet may refuse to clear the chip a day later without a receipt, but the maker cannot.

3622.5.2007 13:24
Movie69n
Inactive

"maybe a little better security inside the store might prevent people from having the time/privacy to start opening crap up and taking it apart."
Unfortunately for the retailers they have policy(not to mention the law NOT being on there side)that requires substancial proof. My gf is an asset protection specialist(no shes not "security"-she has an office and is salary woohoo!)and her hands are tied because of company policy. First, the person who stole(you have to figure this out even before they do it when they first walk through the doors)has to be visually followed the entire time they are in the store. That is to make sure the guy didnt grab merchandise then dump it because he got nervous. Second, the APS needs to make sure the potential thief didnt walk in w/ an unopened dvd/cd case(I know weak scenario but it is a defense in a court of law). Third, it must be on tape that the thief cracked the case and then concealed. That is the most important one-reread second point on why. Also, holidays are a ginormous time for thievery-but not for the reason you might think. Stores rotinely turn off the scan towers by the door because they activate for legitimet customers for the very reason the other blog stated-some pimple faced fucker making $7 an hr doesnt have his mind on his job because he is either thinking about quitting or banging his even uglier girlfriend. The bottom line-stores are touchy on prosecution because if they end up being wrong-either because they are wrong or because they got fooled good then the person can turn around and sue the company for wrongful prosecution. It most likely wont win, but it costs the company lawyer fees and and black eye in the p.r. realm[/b][/i]

3722.5.2007 14:49

Did you notice how small, expensive items are packaged in those large blister packs, the packages that are a bitch to open?
I read some time ago that people were walking in to stores (in mostly winter-time and wearing a jacket)with a small, metal box hidden in the jacket pocket.... the kind that Band-aids came in some time ago. Or similar to Altoids mints.. a hinged-lid metal box that quickly snaps closed.
Anyways, items that could fit into that metal Band-aid box would not trigger off any alarm.... the metal box would not allow the "signal"; or whatever it's called... to trip the security alarm at the door.
Technically, the same thing works with aluminum foil... the signal can't penetrate through the foil. If you had a large, sewn-in pocket lined with foil, it won't trip the alarm. Theives call that hidden pocket a "whizz pocket".

Little items, like those camera memory cards... are packaged in those large blister packs so they cannot be concealed; or easily opened neither. However if you experimented and covered that package with aluminum foil, it won't trip the alarm...
Of course, nobody would cover up a blister pack, but I was using that as an example...

Anyone else hear of this.. is it true ????

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