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Google Chrome extension exploits Spotify with MP3 download feature

Music streaming service is working on a fix
Wed May 08 2013, 12:13
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A GOOGLE CHROME extension is enabling users of Spotify to download music from the streaming service for free, exploting the firm's offline mode feature.

The Chrome plug-in, called Downloadify and created by Dutch developer Robin Aldenhoven, was discovered on Tuesday, and allows users to download MP3 files from the Spotify web player app. Although it has since been removed from the Chrome Web Store, with Google saying that the plug-in does not comply with its terms of service, it's still available via other sources on the web.

Tweakers.net says Downloadify, which still works, takes advantage of the fact that music on the Spotify web player is not encrypted. While we wouldn't recommend trawling the web to get your hands on the app due to its legality, or lack thereof, the website also revealed that it works quite simply, downloading a full, DRM-free MP3 file of the track when a user clicks to play a track.

A Spotify spokesperson told The INQUIRER that it is aware of the issue and is working on a fix, although it was unable to say when this will be rolled out.

We're assuming that it will be released rather quickly though, as the exploit technically means that somebody could sign up for a one month Spotify subscription before downloading all of the music they want from the service and cancelling their plan.

Spotify could face a backlash from record labels over royalty payments and the fact that the music that they own can be downloaded illegally, but this has yet to appear. µ

 

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