Tuesday, May 8, 2007


HOWTO own a 128-bit number!

‘Would you like to be the exclusive owner of a number, with the right to sue other people for knowing your number or telling other people what it is? Now you can.

Last week, the AACS consortium made history by issuing legal threats against the 1.8 million web-pages (and counting) that mentioned its secret code for preventing HD-DVD discs from being copied.

In effect, AACS-LA (the AACS Licensing Authority) claimed that it owned a randomly chosen 128-bit number, and that anyone who possessed or transmitted that number was breaking the law. Moreover, it claimed to own millions more random numbers — claimed that the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which criminalises telling people how to break anti-copying software, gave it exclusive dominion over its many keys.

Why should the AACS get all the fun? Princeton prof Ed Felten has come up with a great way of giving out legally protected 128-bit numbers to anyone who wants them. If he gives out 2^128 of these, then all 128-bit numbers will be owned and no one will ever be able to use a 128-bit key without breaking the law. Good times.’

BTW, I now own the following numbers:

E5 30 A4 6C BF AF 7B 85 59 26 F6 75 32 B2 02 36
06 80 45 C8 3F 90 1D B6 FC DD AE 35 0B C0 2F 64
C7 7C B3 43 96 66 C6 69 0C 0F 9D DA CC B1 2D 5C

If you wish to use them, please email me and we can discuss licensing fees. 🙂

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