6. Hidden DRM Software in Sony CDs

Date: Oct. 31, 2005

In 2005, Mark Russinnovich of Sysinternals discovered that Sony BMG CDs were pre-installed with DRM (Digital Rights Management) software, which automatically installed a rootkit onto a user’s PC that created loopholes in Microsoft Windows that made it susceptible to malware. The software also limited users capabilities to share, play, or edit the music giant's copyrighted material. Sony’s prepackaged uninstaller made matters worse as it installed a dial-home program that created bigger security risks. Another uninstaller had to be created to remove all DRM software. Several class action lawsuits followed and in one involving the FTC in January 2007, Sony was forced to recall all unsold BMG CDs and reimburse customers up to $150 in computer-repair damages.