Representative Henry Waxman, D-Calif., has been poking around on LimeWire a bit lately–and he’s not just looking for advance copies of My December. The chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is investigating whether “government, personal and corporate data” is leaking on to peer-to-peer filesharing sites:
Waxman sent letters to LimeWire CEO Mark Gorton and StreamCast Networks CEO Michael Weiss asking them to explain what steps they’ve taken to ensure that users of the P2P services don’t open up their computers to abuse.
The letters, the first steps in the investigation by Waxman’s committee, come two years after copyright holders won a victory in the U.S. Supreme Court that found the Grokster P2P service illegally induced people to violate copyright laws.
While P2P services have faded from the news and congressional scrutiny, LimeWire and StreamCast are being sued for copyright infringement by the record labels.
Waxman appears to want to delve into reports that such sensitive data as loan applications, bank statements, credit reporting agency records, user ID and password lists and tax returns get inadvertently “shared” with millions of people. There also have been reports of sensitive government information being distributed through P2P.
In the letters, Waxman also asked if “.rar” is pronounced as either “rare” or “rarr, like a growl,” and noted that several files labeled as “Chinese Democracy” were “way old, man–like Buckethead-era demos.”
Waxman probes P2P services [HollywoodReporter.com]