Dish network tells court News Corp unit hacked it

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SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 4, 2007
Pensacola, FL
copy and paste from google finance link...

SANTA ANA, Calif., April 9 (Reuters) - Hackers hired by a News Corp (NWS.N: Quote, Profile, Research) unit stole and posted data that allowed free access to Dish Network's (DISH.O: Quote, Profile, Research) satellite television service, the company said, in a corporate spying trial against its rival that could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

Dubbed the "Black Hat Team," the computer whizzes flooded the market with smart cards that allowed free satellite TV access, a lawyer for Dish said on Wednesday. The suit was brought by EchoStar Communications which later split into two companies, Dish and EchoStar Corp.

A lawyer for News Corps's NDS Group (NNDS.O: Quote, Profile, Research) denied that the company engaged in spying, saying during opening statements in the trial that it was instead engaged in reverse engineering by obtaining the codes and were monitoring piracy.

"Because this is a competitive business, NDS also monitors competitors," NDS attorney Richard Stone told jurors. "NDS has done nothing to illegally harm or damage EchoStar. All NDS has done is compete hard and fair in the marketplace."

Dish is suing NDS and NDS Americas in a corporate espionage trial that U.S. District Judge David Carter said could bring an award of "hundreds of millions or perhaps billions."

The potential damages are based on claims of lost revenue and the cost of fixing the compromised system.

"(NDS) came up with a plan - take these hackers off the streets and turn them on the competitors," Dish's lead attorney, Wade Welch, told the jury. "They called it the Black Hat Team."

NDS, which provides encryption technology to a global satellite empire that includes News Corp's DirecTV in the United States, "made the calculated decision to hire the worst and most well-known satellite pirates and hackers in the world in an effort to establish and maintain control ... over its competitors' technology" EchoStar claims in its lawsuit.


Proud Staff Member
Staff member
Apr 3, 2005
Central Michigan
Going to be a tough lawsuit to prove that News Corp knowingly released Dish hack info to harm their business. Dish has a recent history of VERY POOR legal representation.

They've lost most lawsuits they are involved in.


Bourbon Tester
Supporting Founder
May 18, 2004
I'm Nationwide
Hmm, back in the day they were all claiming DirecTV knowingly left holes in their systems to make them more widely distributed; THEN close the holes and convert hacks into subs. Dish is coming off sounding like a whiny little b!tc4 to me.


Bourbon Tester
Supporting Founder
May 18, 2004
I'm Nationwide
Found this too:

April 10, 2008 – 11:12 BST

By Julian Clover

A team of hackers hired by NDS has been accused of flooding the market with pirated smart cards for the US DTH platform DISH, a Californian District Court heard on Wednesday.

The case has been brought by EchoStar Communications against NDS, the smart card security division of News Corp, operator of rival platform DirecTV.

In opening statements, NDS attorney Richard Stone said the company had done nothing illegally to harm or damage EchoStar, but was simply engaged in reverse engineering by obtaining the codes.
The so-called Black Hat Team was said to have rounded up the leading protagonists in smart card piracy in 1998, when the NDS system used by DirecTV was under constant attack by pirates.

The operation was shut down in 2001 following a raid on the home of hacker Chris Tarnovsky. The suit names the NDS research facility in Haifa, Israel as the primary location where the pirated cards were created.

NDS admits it worked with Tarnovsky, but says the primary purpose was to shut down pirate operations.Echostar is claiming copyright violation, conspiracy, and piracy.

The case continues.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 15, 2003
Fairview, Oregon
...and this

Judge Urges Settlement In Dish Network Dispute With News Corp. Unit

DBS Provider Claims NDS Group Hired Professional Hackers To Compromise Smart Cards
By Linda Haugsted -- Multichannel News, 4/10/2008 5:04:00 PM

...the rest is here

Judge Urges Settlement In Dish Network Dispute With News Corp. Unit - 4/10/2008 5:04:00 PM - Multichannel News

This is a stupid case. Everybody breaks each others systems. From makers of locks and safes to governments.

For instance, an NDS engineer from Haifa, Israel, already testified Thursday that he’s part of the firm’s “Black Hat” squad that hacked Dish’s security cards; while Nagravision’s chief testified that he employs a Canadian hacker that was once prosecuted for piracy by NDS.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 29, 2006
Tulsa. Ok.
so THIS is what Charlie does with all of that money he saves by not lighting up the HD channels that people are screaming out for until he negotiates a much better price than the competitors ?
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