Did you ever come upon a news story that sounded interesting enough to pursue? It happened today with the Reuter's story that the Amazon streaming movies service was flawed and allowed users to download the entire movie without paying for it.
Amazon.com is offering a video streaming service for more than 40000 videos on their website. Users can watch the first two minutes of the videos without charge and have to pay to rent the movie 24 hours or to buy it. Both alternatives allow the user to watch the video right away on the Amazon website. Amazon uses Adobe Flash to transfer the movie to the user. The interesting aspect of the Amazon video streaming service according to Reuters is that they start streaming the entire movie even if the user is only watching previewing it.
The movie is stopped after playing for two minutes and a user who wants to watch the full movie would either have to rent or but it online. The streaming software on the other hand should be able to continue recording the movie because it does not receive the stop signal from the Adobe Flash server.
This would effectively mean that everyone would be able to download all movies that are offered for streaming on Amazon providing that they have access to the correct software. The software mentioned in the article is the commercial multimedia stream catcher Replay Media Catcher which can be tested before purchase.
Reuters mentioned that the trial version was able to download the movies from Amazon. A local test however did not have the same results. This could have several reasons. Reuters did only mention that the software was able to record the movie stream but they did not mention if any other applications or settings were necessary for it to succeed.
It could also mean that Amazon was able to close the security hole by adding another verification. Lastly it could also mean that the service is not available to customers from outside the United States. It would be interesting if any of you would be able to download an entire movie from Amazon just by using the Replay Media Catcher software or a similar product. Let me know if it works for you.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.