Analysis of Security Vulnerabilities in the Movie Production and Distribution Process

18 Pages Posted: 10 May 2012

See all articles by Simon Byers

Simon Byers

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Lorrie Faith Cranor

Carnegie Mellon University - School of Computer Science and Carnegie Institute of Technology

Dave Kormann

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Patrick McDaniel

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Eric Cronin

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: September 19, 2003

Abstract

Unauthorized copying of movies is a major concern for the motion picture industry. While unauthorized copies of movies have been distributed via portable physical media for some time, low-cost, high-bandwidth Internet connections and peer-to-peer file sharing networks provide highly efficient distribution media. Many movies are showing up on file sharing networks shortly after, and in some cases prior to, theatrical release. It has been argued that the availability of unauthorized copies directly affects theater attendance and DVD sales, and hence represents a major financial threat to the movie industry. Our research attempts to determine the source of unauthorized copies by studying the availability and characteristics of recent popular movies in file sharing networks. We developed a data set of 312 popular movies and located one or more samples of 183 of these movies on file sharing networks, for a total of 285 movie samples. 77% of these samples appear to have been leaked by industry insiders. Most of our samples appeared on file sharing networks prior to their official consumer DVD release date. Indeed, of the movies that had been released on DVD as of the time of our study, only 5% first appeared after their DVD release date on a web site that indexes file sharing networks, indicating that consumer DVD copying currently represents a relatively minor factor compared with insider leaks. We perform a brief analysis of the movie production and distribution process and identify potential security vulnerabilities that may lead to unauthorized copies becoming available to those who may wish to redistribute them. Finally, we offer recommendations for reducing security vulnerabilities in the movie production and distribution process.

Suggested Citation

Byers, Simon and Cranor, Lorrie Faith and Kormann, Dave and McDaniel, Patrick and Cronin, Eric, Analysis of Security Vulnerabilities in the Movie Production and Distribution Process (September 19, 2003). TPRC 2003, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2054126

Simon Byers (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Lorrie Faith Cranor

Carnegie Mellon University - School of Computer Science and Carnegie Institute of Technology ( email )

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
United States

Dave Kormann

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Patrick McDaniel

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Eric Cronin

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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