Latest AACS copy protection for HD home video already cracked

After high-profile headlines in recent months that the copy protection on Blu-ray and HD-DVD discs had been cracked, engineers went back to work on revising the AACS copy protection system used on both home video formats.

Now comes word that the latest round of Blu-ray and HD-DVD titles, set for a May 22 release with revised AACS technology, have already been broken as well, according to Endgadget, the technology Web site.

Slysoft, an Internet company based on the island of Antigua, has already released a beta of AnyDVD HD, which, Endgadget reported, “kicks AACS MKB v3 swiftly to the curb.” This updated software, the report said, has already been demonstrated to work with an early-shipped release of “The Matrix Trilogy” on HD-DVD and will likely work for “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” when it arrives on Blu-ray.

AnyDVD HD works in the background to automatically remove the AACS copy protection of a Blu-ray or HD-DVD release. It allows movies to be viewed over a digital display connection, without HDCP-compliant graphics card and display.

It also plays back discs on a Windows PC with PowerDVD Ultra, making discs viewable that would otherwise not run. It also removes user prohibitions, so disc owners can select the language and subtitle track without going through the disc’s menu.