Here's a question for the legal eagles who I know regularly read this column:
the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook
are revealed for all to see!
A major corporation is hit by a email-borne virus and loses a swag of data
which, despite backups and firewalls, ends up costing them a small fortune to
The source of the infection is traced back to an email that originated from
Authorities swoop on you and confiscate your computer as evidence.
Upon investigation it is discovered that you are running unpatched versions
of Microsoft Outlook and Internet Explorer and, through these vulnerabilities,
the virus infected your machine before forwarding itself to the corporation.
Furthermore, it is shown, by checking your browser cache, that you knew that
there was a virus threat and you knew that you should have patched your
software to avoid being infected -- you read that story on the Web
just days before getting hit.
So... could you be sued for negligence?
Could it be argued that by not taking reasonable care to ensure that your
system was patched against virus attack you effectively contributed to
the costs incurred by the corporation?
Even if you could successfully defend such an action if it were brought
against you -- could you afford the legal fees?
Food for thought? More reason to patch your system?
What ever happened to the idea of using the mains power network for
carrying internet traffic?
It strikes me that given the government's commitment to providing
decent (which these days means at least 56Kbps) access for all NZers,
and given the huge amounts of dosh that are now being applied to
funding new ideas and startups, surely we could do something with
NZ is home to several hi-tech companies who most certainly have the
people and resources to perform R&D in this field and if we
could come up with an effective solution then the export potential
It seems that most of overseas efforts have gotten to the point of
running limited trials and then gone silent. Come on Kiwis, surely
we can apply our brains to the problems intrinsic to this concept
and come up with yet another world first?
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