Here we go again - ISP DPI, but is it interception?

Peter Mitchell otcbn at
Mon Aug 2 16:31:29 BST 2010

Brian Morrison wrote  on 30-07-10 11:51:
> On Fri, 30 Jul 2010 11:39:02 +0100
> Nicholas Bohm <nbohm at> wrote:
>>> No they aren't. You may recall that, a couple of years ago, someone
>>> was convicted of computer misuse because he probed a site for
>>> malware - to be precise, he put "/.." on an URL.
>> Useful point: do you have a reference?
> Dan Cuthbert. He was trying to make a donation to a Tsunami relief
> charity web site and noted that the site was very slow and thought
> perhaps he might be being phished, so he truncated the URL back to just
> the host name. He was prosecuted for purely that action, possibly
> because as an IT professional the police thought he should realise that
> such an action would be unauthorised.

Which prompts three questions. How was it proved that such an action was indeed unauthorised? Why would Cuthbert think (a priori) that it was unauthorised? Why did the police think that Cuthbert would think that it was unauthorised? 

A preposterous conviction and an even more preposterous prosecution. 

Pete Mitchell

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