Ofcom set to investigate News Corp subsidiary

Media watchdog Ofcom is set to investigate claims that a News Corp subsidiary ‘helped to hasten the demise’of one of its British pay-TV rivals.

The Independent reports today that the regulator would consider “all relevant evidence” after being asked to look into allegations by the BBC’s Panorama that ‘NDS, a London-based News Corp company specialising in satellite television technology, leaked codes that could have been used to create counterfeit smart cards for the now defunct ITV Digital”.

Today’s report said:

NDS, which is being sold to computing giant Cisco for $5bn, has flatly denied the Panorama claims, describing them as “simply not true”. It said: “It is wrong to claim NDS has ever been in possession of any codes for the purpose of promoting hacking or piracy.”

It added:

At the heart of the latest claims, which focus on the strenuous and expensive efforts of pay-TV companies to maintain the integrity of their encryption systems in a ruthless world of pirates, lies an elite strata of “super-hackers” whose genius was to be able to penetrate security codes which their manufacturers claim to be unbreakable.

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