At least when it comes to such mishaps as the, that's what an official from the Department of Homeland Security suggested Thursday.
"The recent Sony experience shows us that we need to be thinking about how we ensure that consumers are not surprised by what their software programs do," Jonathan Frenkel, director of law enforcement policy at the U.S Department of Homeland Security said in a speech here at the RSA Conference 2006.
A lesson has been learned from the, which left unwitting consumers with software on their PCs that could be used by cyberattackers to . "Companies now know that they should not surreptitiously install a rootkit on computers," Frenkel said.
But perhaps more importantly, how could the mishap have been avoided in the first place? "Legislation or regulation may not be a solution in all cases, but it may be warranted in appropriate circumstances," Frenkel said.
Last November, Sony was found to be shipping copy-protected compact discs thaton the computers that played them. The rootkit technology offered a hiding place for malicious software and attackers, which were .
After the rootkit technology was uncovered on Sony's CDs, the company faced heavy criticism and lawsuits. Itthe discs, and has agreed to for buyers of the CDs that contain the rootkit.
Since the Sony case, other companies have been accused of shipping products with rootkit-type behavior. Symantec last month released an update to its popular Norton SystemWorks tothat could be abused by cybercriminals to hide malicious software.
According to F-Secure, a Finnish antivirus vendor, the German DVD release of "Mr. & Mrs. Smith," contains a digital rights management protection tool that uses rootkit-like cloaking technology. The movie is distributed by 20th Century Fox.