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Cisco PIX Source Code Held at Gunpoint

November 4th, 2004

The sourcecode to Cisco’s industry leading PIX firewall system was recently stolen and put up for sale by malicious hackers under the guise of “The Source Code Club”.

Interested parties are currently able to purchase the source code to what is arguably one of the most widely respected enterprise firewall products on the market for a mere $24,000.

The Source Code Club had originally been noticed in July when the group started posting to well trafficed discussion lists and newsgroups about the source code to various products it was selling. The Source Code Club website was held on anonymous Ukrainian servers, and messages were posted by a Larry Hobbles.

The site’s obvious intent was to steal intellectual property and distribute it for profit. It was quickly shut down, though, citing a need to restructure their business plan.

Apparently whatever problems there were with the business plan have been solved, as the store is open with not only Cisco’s PIX firewall’s source, but also the sources of Enterasys Dragon 6.1 from Enterasys Networks and the source code for Napster. The selling prices, as currently listed, are $19,200 for Dragon and $12,000 for Napster.

Apparently, The Source Code Club is offering free memberships to anyone who purchases products. The membership allows customers access to other source code which wouldn’t otherwise be released.

While the Intellectual Property issues are clear, it is unclear whether The Source Code Club feels sufficiently safe to enter into this new market for the long haul, or whether they are simply trying to make a quick buck and then disappear again. Either way, Cisco is unlikely to take event this lying down.

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