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This is a discussion on Censorship? in the Hosting Talk & Chit-chat forum
This link used to have a big FBI logo on it along with the still posted warning. Guess they got tired of all the click-throughs. ...

  1. #1
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    Censorship?

    This link used to have a big FBI logo on it along with the still posted warning. Guess they got tired of all the click-throughs.

    By the way, grupo limite is the name of a popular latin, music group so I would not be suprised if many visitors navigated to the site by mistake...but they still got logged by the FBI.

    Check it out... but be warned that you will be logged by the FBI if you do. I won't put a link so it won't come back here.

    limite.com
    Last edited by Df_Gamer; 05-30-2004 at 02:24 AM.

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  3. #3
    || $name ne 'R.Stiltskin'
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    What's the significance of the site? Did it host something interesting before it was, um, shut down? Also, the noted threat of logging doesn't seem to be that big of a deal. I'd venture to guess that every website on the internet logs its visitors. If some investigative agency was trying to "spy" on someone, why would they post a big, fat warning sign that the site was being logged? I'm wondering if this was some kind of hoax - something doesn't add up. I wonder if the site was getting hacked and it (FBI logo) was being used to intimidate the hackers?

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    Heck, my PC even logs information about every visitor

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    It would be funny if the site was a hoax. But if not, maintaining the dns connection would allow the FBI to establish a "checkpoint" for visitors without allowing the offending material to stay on the net.

    The company in Spain might not even know about the site content. If a U.S. citizen registered the name through the Spanish IP, then all the Feds would need would be the users logon info to maintain the site and keep it operational.

    A cursory search located only one extinct link (www limite. com/ruth)

    Along the same vein, how safe are managed sites? How can a customer without any tech background understand or learn if their managed site is being used to hide banned material? Placing material in a directory hidden from bots can allow someone to hide all kinds of stuff under a legitimate domain while placing the site and owner at risk of being shutdown in the course of an investigation.
    Last edited by Df_Gamer; 05-30-2004 at 11:17 AM.

  6. #6
    A geezer, with 1 foot in. Oldfrog's Avatar
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    I know that I am not nearly as adept as a lot of others at tracking these things down, but there are several things here that puzzle me. The registrant for the domain is in Spain both the name servers listed in DNS are European. Also, a search for DNS records only showed the NS records and reverse DNS showed no mismatch errors. I am guessing that that indicates that there is not a redirect in place (or maybe not).

    A Google search failed to bring up any sites that linked to it or any info on Pepuscom, the supposed registrant.

    So, how does the FBI shut down a web site in Europe, and how does an English language message show up closing a site ostensibly located in Spain? Do you have any clue what the original purpose of the site was, DF, or did you find it like this?
    Gravity, more than a good idea, it's the law!

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    Guess my edit crossed your post Oldfrog. I found the site about a year ago with the FBI Seal and a larger warning against anyone attempting to use the site (I guess trying to access other directories).
    Last edited by Df_Gamer; 05-30-2004 at 11:22 AM.

  8. #8
    A geezer, with 1 foot in. Oldfrog's Avatar
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    Well, we know that the 'hidden directory' trick is used a lot. I've started really scrutinizing some of the spam I get, especially if it looks like 'phishing'. I have found several with bogus links that went to a behind the scenes area on what looked to be very legitimate sites.
    Gravity, more than a good idea, it's the law!

  9. #9
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    A copy of the site as it looked in 2000 (from archive.org) shows nothing but a black page. That does indeed look suspicious. I mean, a website with nothing on it? Very fishy.

  10. #10
    || $name ne 'R.Stiltskin'
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    Galen - the website with nothing on it brings up an interesting point, but not for the censorship thing. About 2 years ago I experienced the same thing but for a different purpose.

    A webmaster had stolen, quite literally downloaded all of my public content, my website and tried to use it as his own creation. They had also registered a domain name that was the same as mine except for the root extension. I had to send a cease and desist letter to the registrant and the webmaster's company threatening legal action if they did not remove my content. OK, so where does this blank page come in? Well, if you visited the developer's front page, you got a blank page - clearly just a front to discourage random browsing and to serve as an internet placeholder. But, if you visited the subdirectory where my content was stored (derived from my host's server logs), you got to view my website in its full glory with a period or two changed here or there to try to avoid copyright infringement. The registrant apparently worked/owned a company in the same industry as mine and wanted to cut some corners on developing his/her own web presence.

    It's possible that this blank page is just a frontpage for some other developer activity - you know, allow a cursory visitation that doesn't appear to show anything - whereby the site doesn't get too restrictive but the site can get developed in the background just prior to rollout. If nothing else, let this serve as a heads up for your creative content. There's a lot of theft out there.

  11. #11
    Ron
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    Off topic:
    I've had whole pages lifted -- banner, and photos, and reconstructed on another site too! They did put a link to my site on their site (it was an image link and the alt description was "THEIR website").

    They didn't even bother to change the graphics' file names. Just used everything as-is.

    I found they had done this when someone actually clicked on that link, and I found it in my referrer report as a new external link.

    This was the impetus for me to go back and watermark every single photgraph on the site. Won't stop theft, but at least they'll have to edit the dang file!

  12. #12
    || $name ne 'R.Stiltskin'
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    Still off topic:
    Originally posted by Ron
    Off topic:
    ...They didn't even bother to change the graphics' file names. Just used everything as-is.
    ...This was the impetus for me to go back and watermark every single photgraph on the site. Won't stop theft, but at least they'll have to edit the dang file!
    Yep, the laziness of these hacks just astounds. I institute digital watermarking as well as a few other tricks to protect my "art". I would recommend that any content creator do the same - and report violations to the FBI's cybercrime website. This will help your paper trail for any future legal proceedings since you must actively protect your copyrighted material to maintain exclusive ownership. Knowingly ignoring a copyright infringement of your own material weakens your legal standing.
    Last edited by Spathiphyllum; 05-30-2004 at 10:42 PM.

  13. #13
    Ron
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    U know of any *FREE* digital watermarkers for .jpg or as a plugin for photoshop 6.0?

    One I saw was like $100 and no way was I going to spend that.
    Also, are there any search englines that read digital watermarks and associate them with the pictures?

  14. #14
    || $name ne 'R.Stiltskin'
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    Still off topic:

    I'm using an older version of Photoshop and it can use "free" or "for fee" digital watermarking plugins. It included one from Digimarc but it was so long ago that I don't remember all of its details. I recall being able to watermark a certain number of images for free and then a subscription had to be purchased. I don't know what PS6 uses.

    I'm not aware of any regular search engines associating watermarks with images since it doesn't really address their interests. The proprietary digital mark is embedded in the raw bits of image code and the search engine sites don't scan for it. However, the watermarking software companies do have spidering software to scan and report sites that are using your watermarked images. The service provided depends on the subscription type for which you are paying. I'm afraid I do not know of any services that are free. I've just opted to subscribe for services to protect my business investment and defend my copyrights - it's one of my many costs of doing business.

    I hope that an open source solution comes along that will work in the Gimp. I'm guessing that a lot of people want a simple image stamp without the active spider tracking provided by a for-profit company.

  15. #15
    Ron
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    If I may be so bold, how much are you paying?

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