Microsoft Palladium: Access denied!

Thursday, 18 July 2002, 1:46 AM EST

A new plan by Microsoft to redesign personal computers in the name of improved security may clamp a virtual lock on every new PC, and hand media companies a key to allow them to track and limit how media files are played. The initiative is named after the Greek goddess Palladium, who guarded the gates of Troy. Microsoft casts its Palladium as the digital gatekeeper of the computer world, protecting consumers by checking what can get in and out of PCs. It's touting consumer security, such as an ability to block spam by quarantining e-mails whose senders are not verifiable, and encrypting data in real time, so that only the people and companies you authorise can access it.

But, since details of Palladium leaked out in an unquestioning "exclusive" granted to Newsweek last month, industry analysts, security experts and privacy advocates have unleashed a torrent of criticism.

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