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Overview Edit

Pagejacking (also spelled page-jacking) is the practice of stealing another's Web pages, keywords or metatags and misrepresenting their origin. The thief then embeds a short computer program that is hidden to a user, but redirects a user's browser to another website, usually a pornographic site. When users utilize a search engine, they may click on the stolen web page and are redirect to the thief’s website.

Complicating matters even further is that page-jackers often "mousetrap" a user's browser so that attempts to close the browser's windows or to use the "back" or "forward" button will simply direct the user to another site.

Federal Trade Commission actions Edit

The FTC has taken the lead in addressing page-jacking. In September 1999, the FTC announced that it had obtained temporary restraining orders in federal district court against several website owners for page-jacking. The FTC alleged that the website owners had engaged in deceptive and unfair trade practices in violation of the FTC Act.[1]

Intellectual property laws Edit

Page-jacking could also potentially violate federal intellectual property laws. That is, if a page-jacker copies substantial portions of the imitated sites, then he might be criminally liable for copyright infringement. In addition, if a page-jacker hacks into a domain name server and changes the data to redirect visitors to the hacker's site, that person could also be in violation of federal computer crime statutes, such as 18 U.S.C. §1030, which protect the integrity of computer systems against hackers.

References Edit

  1. 15 U.S.C. §45(a).

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