[free-sklyarov] Dmitry Reaches Agreement
thumbtack1348 at home.com
Thu Dec 13 14:57:23 PST 2001
This from the U.S. Att'y. in SFO:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 13, 2001
The United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of
California announced that Dmitry Sklyarov entered into an agreement
morning with the United States and admitted his conduct in a hearing
U.S. District Judge Whyte in San Jose Federal Court.
Under the agreement, Mr. Sklyarov agreed to cooperate with the
United States in its ongoing prosecution of Mr. Sklyarov's former
Elcomsoft Co., Ltd. Mr. Skylarov will be required to appear at trial
testify truthfully, and he will be deposed in the matter. For its part,
United States agreed to defer prosecution of Mr. Sklyarov until the
conclusion of the case against Elcomsoft or for one year, whichever is
longer. Mr. Sklyarov will be permitted to return to Russia in the
but will be subject to the Court's supervision, including regularly
reporting by telephone to the Pretrial Services Department. Mr.
will be prohibited from violating any laws during the year, including
copyright laws. The United States agreed that, if Mr. Sklyarov
completes the obligations in the agreement, it will dismiss the charges
pending against him at the end of the year or when the case against
Elcomsoft is complete.
Mr. Sklyarov, 27, of Moscow, Russia, was indicted by a federal
Jury on August 28, 2001. He was charged with one count of conspiracy in
violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371, and two counts
trafficking for gain in technology primarily designed to circumvent
technology that protects a right of a copyright owner in violation of
17, United States Code, Section 1201(b)(1)(A), and two counts of
for gain in technology marketed for use in circumventing technology that
protects a right of a copyright owner in violation of Title 17, United
States Code, Section 1201(b)(1)(A).
In entering into the agreement with the government, Mr. Sklyarov
required to acknowledge his conduct in the offense. In the agreement,
Sklyarov made the following admissions, which he also confirmed in
"Beginning on a date prior to June 20, 2001, and continuing through July
2001, I was employed by the Russian software company, Elcomsoft Co. Ltd.
(also known as Elcom Ltd.) (hereinafter "Elcomsoft") as a computer
programmer and cryptanalyst.
"Prior to June 20, 2001, I was aware Adobe Systems, Inc. ("Adobe") was a
software company in the United States. I was also aware Adobe was the
creator of the Adobe Portable Document Format ("PDF"), a computer file
format for the publication and distribution of electronic documents.
to June 20, 2001, I knew Adobe distributed a program titled the Adobe
Acrobat eBook Reader that provided technology for the reading of
in an electronic format on personal computers. Prior to June 20, 2001,
was aware that documents distributed in the Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader
format are PDF files and that specifications of PDF allow for limiting
certain operations, such as opening, editing, printing, or annotating.
"Prior to June 20, 2001, as a part of my dissertation work and as part
employment with Elcomsoft, I wrote a part of computer program titled the
Advanced eBook Processor ("AEBPR"). I developed AEBPR as a practical
application of my research for my dissertation and in order to
weaknesses in protection methods of PDF files. The only use of the
is to create an unprotected copy of an electronic document. Once a PDF
is decrypted with the AEBPR, a copy is no longer protected by
This is all the AEBPR program does.
"Prior to June 20, 2001, I believed that ElcomSoft planned to post the
program on the Internet on the company's website www.elcomsoft.com. I
believed that the company would charge a fee for a license for the full
version of the AEBPR that would allow access to all capabilities of the
"After Adobe released a new version of the Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader
prevented the initial version of the AEBPR program from removing the
limitations or restrictions on an e-book, I wrote software revisions for
new version of the AEBPR program. The new version again decrypted the
e-document to which it was applied. The version of this new AEBPR
offered on the Elcomsoft website only decrypted a portion of an
to which it was applied, unless the user had already purchased a fully
functional version of the earlier version and had both versions
the same machine. The new version was developed after June 29, 2001. At
that time, Elcomsoft had already stopped selling the program. The
this new program offered on the Elcomsoft website did not provide a user
with an opportunity to purchase it or convert it to a fully functional
and was developed as a matter of competition.
"On July 15, 2001, as part of my employment with Elcomsoft, I attended
DEF CON Nine conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. At the conference I made
presentation originally intended for the BlackHat conference that
immediately preceded the DefCon Nine in July 2001 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
same group of people organizes both BlackHat and DefCon Nine. Since
was no available slot for a presentation at BlackHat at the time when
paper was sent for the committee consideration, the organizers of both
conferences suggested that the paper be presented at the DefCon rather
at BlackHat. The paper that I read at DefCon is attached as Exhibit
principal part of my presentation is comprised of my research for the
dissertation. In my presentation when I said "we", I meant Elcomsoft."
Mr. Sklyarov's employer, Elcomsoft, remains charged in the case,
the Court in that matter has set hearings for various motions on March
2002, and April 1, 2002.
The prosecution of Elcomsoft is the result of an investigation
the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Scott Frewing and Joseph Sullivan
the Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property ("CHIP") Unit are the
Assistant U.S. Attorneys who are prosecuting the case with the
legal technician Lauri Gomez.
A copy of this press release and key court documents filed in
case may also be found on the U.S. Attorney's Office's website at
All press inquiries to the U.S. Attorney's Office should be
to Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew J. Jacobs at (415)436-7181 or
U.S. Attorney Ross Nadel, Chief of the CHIP Unit, in San Jose at (408
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