×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Eavesdropping With a Smart TV

Soulskill posted about 7 months ago | from the i'll-stick-with-a-dumb-tv,-thanks dept.

Television 93

An anonymous reader writes "A article on The Register titled talks about a demo that was given in London last month by NCC Group where they turned a modern TV into an audio bug. 'The devices contain microphones and cameras that can be utilized by applications — Skype and similar apps being good examples. The TV has a fairly large amount of storage, so would be able to hold more than 30 seconds of audio – we only captured short snippets for demonstrations purposes. A more sophisticated attack could store more audio locally and only upload it at certain times, or could even stream it directly to a server, bypassing the need to use any of the device’s storage.' Given the Snowden revelations and what we've seen previously about older tech being deprecated, how can we protect ourselves with the modern devices (other than not connecting them to the Internet)?"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

mbone (558574) | about 7 months ago | (#46969003)

Well, duh, don't connect them to the Internet. Unplug them from the wall when they are not in use, and cover over camera lenses with tape. But you should do that already.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (4, Informative)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 7 months ago | (#46969073)

That won't work.

There's a good breakdown on infowars about why it won't work:

http://www.infowars.com/91497/ [infowars.com]

But you can't just take what's on infowars without a grain of salt, so here's a video on intel's website where they substantiate everything, but with a positive spin

http://www.intel.com/content/w... [intel.com]

We need open hardware. The hardware being made in the factories is not trustworthy.

For the majority who won't click links and read articles, the gist is, there's a 3G radio antenna and a special dedicated processor inside of your CPU, and it can be used to either take complete control of your device, or to destroy it. All the details are there in Intel's marketing material.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969129)

Any link to infowars needs to come with an instant -5 moderation. You may or may not have a point here, but I'll never know since I can't trust the utterly insane source you've chosen.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969167)

If you can't be bothered to, at least, read the fucking comment... holy fucking christ on a cracker. fuck you. I bet you comment on submissions without even reading the fucking summary, much less the article. Come on, dipshit.... RTF* or GTFO.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969205)

No, idiot, I can't even tell what his argument is because he never states it in his fucking post. Just a link to info wars, which no sane person will bother clicking. The intel video is meaningless without knowing what his fucking point is.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969261)

No, idiot, I can't even tell what his argument is because he never states it in his fucking post. Just a link to info wars, which no sane person will bother clicking. The intel video is meaningless without knowing what his fucking point is.

Perhaps you should Read His Last Fucking Sentence then, dipshit.

Pretty goddamn pathetic when he summarized his point mere words later and you couldn't even be bothered to finish reading it.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 7 months ago | (#46969695)

No, idiot, I can't even tell what his argument is because he never states it in his fucking post. Just a link to info wars, which no sane person will bother clicking. The intel video is meaningless without knowing what his fucking point is.

Perhaps you should Read His Last Fucking Sentence then, dipshit.

Pretty goddamn pathetic when he summarized his point mere words later and you couldn't even be bothered to finish reading it.

You get that he's being paid to pollute this forum with this type of confusion, right? This is his 9-5 job.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about 7 months ago | (#46969787)

You get that he's being paid to pollute this forum with this type of confusion, right? This is his 9-5 job.

So you think that this is two different ACs? I was kinda leaning toward it being one with multiple personality disorder.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (3, Interesting)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 7 months ago | (#46969839)

Never attribute to stupidity what is easily explained by malice. The enemy is active, intelligent, malicious and not easily pinned down.

For example, there's a whole host of conversation going on these days about "Why does the NSA fail to implement basic security measures that could have prevented Snowden from doing what he did."

The answer is to act just as they do, and look at the metadata. Don't try to put your finger on who exactly did this or that, but try to understand their nature, goals and motivations... to define them in the abstract, and act against them in the abstract.

Who is served by an easily compromised NSA? Organized crime? Multinational corporations? Israeli intelligence? Doesn't matter exactly who, if you understand their nature, you can fuck with their agenda without ever knowing who they are.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 7 months ago | (#46969989)

Who is served by an easily compromised NSA?

Even uncompromised they requested an allied foreign intelligence agency to spy on an Indonesian cigarette manufacturer to uncover trade secrets. Such an odd incident appears to indicate that they are serving a US tobacco company. The full story would be interesting - how much does it cost to hire the NSA to spy on a competitor?

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46973235)

Christ-on-a-cracker AC, here... You're not helping your cause when you try to substantiate the asinine extra layer of conspiracy that includes my own comment. I mean, original AC is looking more and more like a troll-shill, but come on... Be less crazy, please...for all our sakes. Sorry about the flamebait, folks... (#46969209) was right.... I was hot, sweaty, and covered in noxious pollen after my first serious weed-eating session of the spring.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969209)

Oh dear. Having a bad day?

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

profplump (309017) | about 7 months ago | (#46969143)

Yes. Wake-on-LAN and power management. Super scary stuff there. Thanks for the warning.

wake source - unknown (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969747)

Not a TV, but I installed the iControl software for some stupid reason and 5 cameras showed up on my network connected via MAC only. I then blacklisted the mac addresses, and next my computer started waking up randomly. I disabled the wake on lan functionality, but i'll admit I was a little scared by the horrible software I installed. No reply from their tech support.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about 7 months ago | (#46969161)

I'm pretty sure that that won't work if you follow the grandparent post's advice, "unplug them from the wall when they are not in use." I did not see anything in those links you posted about those chips working when there was no electricity to the device.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about 7 months ago | (#46969329)

I'm pretty sure that that won't work if you follow the grandparent post's advice, "unplug them from the wall when they are not in use." I did not see anything in those links you posted about those chips working when there was no electricity to the device.

Speaking of "grandparents", take a look at those around today. Those happened to be the last generation of people who actually powered electronic devices off, and knew what it was like to walk around without the electronic leash of social media shoved up their ass 24 hours a day.

Therefore, that "advice" to power shit off when "not in use" is rather meaningless, especially as more and more people shift entertainment to a cellular device that never powers off or leaves their side.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about 7 months ago | (#46969485)

Except that the advice was not to "power it off" when not in use. The advice was to unplug them from the wall.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

geekmux (1040042) | about 7 months ago | (#46969609)

Except that the advice was not to "power it off" when not in use. The advice was to unplug them from the wall.

Today's generation is so lazy they have remote controls for laptops.

This laziness was so powerful in fact that the industry response was not to find ways to get people more active. No, instead they invented smart power strips so people can turn their shit on and off with their cell phone.

Needless to say, the advice is yet again, meaningless and the example not without irony.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 7 months ago | (#46969883)

Except that the advice was not to "power it off" when not in use. The advice was to unplug them from the wall.

Are you aware that if you take an old television apart and go poking your fingers around in there, you'll very likely be killed, even if the television has been unplugged for over a year. They contain capacitors that will hold a deadly charge for a very long time after you unplug them.

You really think something they designed in these types of capabilities for espionage, but are going to be stymied by you unplugging the thing?

The US government controls what hardware is contained in those televisions. They forced the issue when they were moving away from free-to-air television. If you've been coming to slashdot for a long time, you read all about it.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 7 months ago | (#46970015)

They contain capacitors that will hold a deadly charge for a very long time after you unplug them.

You should be fine. Your various aluminum foil bits will protect you handily.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (3, Informative)

Ol Olsoc (1175323) | about 7 months ago | (#46970577)

Are you aware that if you take an old television apart and go poking your fingers around in there, you'll very likely be killed, even if the television has been unplugged for over a year. They contain capacitors that will hold a deadly charge for a very long time after you unplug them.

Which is a non sequitar. If you are going into the television, you discharge the capacitor. The closest thing I can come up with is that you are sying the cap is a power source. Won't work.

You really think something they designed in these types of capabilities for espionage, but are going to be stymied by you unplugging the thing?

The US government controls what hardware is contained in those televisions. They forced the issue when they were moving away from free-to-air television. If you've been coming to slashdot for a long time, you read all about it.

So, what evidence do you have of this? How is the "snooping" device powered? What frequencies does it operate on? All this is very simple stuff. You can't hide power sources, you can't hide RF. You can't power unpowered things. I could open the back of a smart TV and find the needed components pretty quickly. You'd need a battery, an RF transmitter, and antenna. Looking, and a multimeter, and a cheap radio (I'd use a spectrum analyzer) are all you need. I forgot - a screwdriver. But trivial to find. Can't change the laws of physics, no matter how advanced the paranoia.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46970789)

Don't bother trying to argue with tinfoil hat nutters.
"Physically impossible? Hah! They(tm) reverse engineered this from technology They(tm) found in the crashed UFO!!1!one"

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

Ol Olsoc (1175323) | about 7 months ago | (#46971891)

Don't bother trying to argue with tinfoil hat nutters. "Physically impossible? Hah! They(tm) reverse engineered this from technology They(tm) found in the crashed UFO!!1!one"

Which brings the conversation into the territory of Why exactly people believe some of the crazy stuff they believe.

The idea of a television with internet access being able to spy on you is one thing - not a technological issue in that at all, the belief that the television still does this after there is no energy to do this any more is somewhat bizzare.

But that's what we live in these days. People who utterly reject science, the NutterWhackers - But they will immediately take up with nonsense like this, or that they can run their car on pure water, or they can warm their house using 4 tea candles and a couple clay flower pots.

All based not on science or reality, but the paranoid idea that everything you are told by smart people is a lie, but some guy on the internet (or the History2 channel) has the real scoop. We're reaching a point that ignoring the NutterWhackers is going to just produce more ignorant people and return us to the dark ages. We should listen to smart people not stupid ones.

Or yeah, Infowars. I find that people that continually yell at you are somewhat less credible then they'd like you to believe.

Here is the Nutterwhackers version of science:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 7 months ago | (#46971273)

Any TV made after the 1960s should have a bleeder resistor to discharge any dangerous capacitors.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

pslytely psycho (1699190) | about 7 months ago | (#46971073)

I was a television repairman in another life (before disposable TVs) and the only place that carries enough voltage and amperage to kill you is the high voltage transformer. To discharge, simply attach a ground to a screwdriver, insert under the tube connection point.(the wire from the top of the transformer to the side of the tube, notable for a large round rubber connector.) If there is a charge you hear a snap and it's discharged. If you hear nothing, there was no charge.

Works like a charm.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 7 months ago | (#46970005)

You've just made everyone over 40 feel old.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (2)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 7 months ago | (#46970163)

Meh. I'm 63 and so long as I can get ED meds I am NOT going to feel old!

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

RockDoctor (15477) | about 6 months ago | (#46988207)

especially as more and more people shift entertainment to a cellular device that never powers off or leaves their side.

Just because lots of people do it doesn't mean that it's a sensible thing to do.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 7 months ago | (#46969333)

Well exactly. If you had that kind of capability would you be shouting it from the rooft0| $..., ,
no carrier

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (3, Informative)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | about 7 months ago | (#46969185)

There's a good breakdown on infowars about why it won't work:

http://www.infowars.com/91497/ [infowars.com]

Most Intel's hardware doesn't ship with vPro, so it's unlikely to be much of a problem. Also, most smart-TVs and the likes still ship with ARM-chips, not Intel.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969595)

whether the rest of 'vpro' (which is just a blanket branding of a number of ''features'') is present or not, the secret oob 3g radio is still in the processor and can still do its dirty work.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 7 months ago | (#46971219)

In addition, 3G is unlikely to work inside a metal PC case with the teeny-tiny antenna that would fit on a CPU substrate. The technology seems to be aimed at portable devices and requires an external antenna connection to have any hope of getting a connection.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46971241)

Most Intel's hardware doesn't ship with vPro, so it's unlikely to be much of a problem.

For now.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

ewieling (90662) | about 7 months ago | (#46969355)

Where in the Intel video you posted a link to does it mention "3G" or "wireless". It infers "wireless" but I don't see anymore than that. Which standards do these "3G" chips support? EVDO? UMTS? Also, what frequency bands?

IPMI can do many of the management things Intel is crowing about in the video. Including powering on the server when it is powered off and getting KVM sessions.

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

Do you have any evidence other than the web site of a known conspiracy theorist or a marketing video from Intel?

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

wiredlogic (135348) | about 7 months ago | (#46969611)

From the Intel website [intel.com] :

Previous versions of Intel Anti-Theft Technology enabled authorized IT or service personnel to send a coded "poison pill" over the Internet to completely disable a lost or stolen computer and help prevent access to its encrypted data and deter theft. New Intel AT 3.0 enables the poison pill to be sent as an encrypted, authenticated SMS message by an authorized administrator over a 3G cellular network as well within moments after a missing laptop is turned on. When recovered, the PC can be similarly re-activated with another message. Its new Locator Beacon capability gives authorities the ability to pinpoint a missing laptop using GPS technology on select 3G modems.

Presumably this 3G radio can transmit as well as receive. I tried to find more informative datasheets but Intel's website sucks and I couldn't find more on it.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969745)

*facepalm*

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969771)

There's no secret 3G radio nor antenna.
What there actually is, is a embedded processor with full access to everything.
That the owner of the device has no control over.
And that *can* be used to remotely do stuff over a 3G connection if the manufacturer... drumroll... adds a external 3G modem and antenna.
So as usual, by making crazy shit up the tinfoil hat brigade distracts from a rather serious and real issue.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

fnj (64210) | about 7 months ago | (#46972451)

Mod parent up. The 3G-inside-CPU-chip hysteria is just that.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 7 months ago | (#46969949)

there's a 3G radio antenna and a special dedicated processor inside of your CPU

Unless you've got a plastic case the signal would suck even before the problem of a small antenna kicks in.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

fnj (64210) | about 7 months ago | (#46972471)

And it would have to somehow magically get a signal through the metal cap (and the heat sink on top) even it there was such a thing inside the CPU chip.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 7 months ago | (#46970207)

We need open hardware. The hardware being made in the factories is not trustworthy.

True. But in the meantime, you can install a $0.50 switch in one of the wires to the microphone, and put a post-it note over the camera.

Re: Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46971427)

Infowars? You've just shown that what a moron you are.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

JoeMerchant (803320) | about 7 months ago | (#46971661)

How putting black tape over a camera lens won't work is a little beyond me. I can see how audio mics might get past simple muffling techniques, but the camera?

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

JoeMerchant (803320) | about 7 months ago | (#46971673)

As to embedded 3G antennae, I can barely get a signal out on my cell phone through a metal roof, seems like a tinfoil hat would be quite effective here.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | about 7 months ago | (#46969097)

Or just don't buy a TV that comes right out of 1984 with a camera and mic included. If you want to Skype, get separate (probably better...) inputs, and connect them up via a system you control and trust.

I'm rapidly coming around to the view that it should be legally required for anything you buy to declare all sensors it includes (camera, mic, GPS, WiFi receiver, etc.) and all networking capabilities (wired or wireless) prominently on the packaging, and to provide a hardwired switch to disable these facilities when they aren't (or shouldn't be) in use. It's crazy how many people are buying things that have all kinds of surveillance capabilities that have already been shown to be vulnerable and don't realise it because they just assume they can trust a TV from a big name brand like Samsung.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969273)

I'm rapidly coming around to the view that it should be legally required for anything you buy to declare all sensors it includes (camera, mic, GPS, WiFi receiver, etc.) and all networking capabilities (wired or wireless) prominently on the packaging, and to provide a hardwired switch to disable these facilities when they aren't (or shouldn't be) in use.

Should say this to your congressman if you want your words to have an effect. Usually they don't hang out on /. :)

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | about 7 months ago | (#46969297)

Actually, I'm in the UK, and I'm reasonably sure my MP does lurk on Slashdot. :-)

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969181)

I live next to a high-end TV store. The sort of high-end TVs that use wi-fi to connect a remote-control or iPad to control the screen. There's actually an option to use wi-fi to stream video from the TV to a secondary device so you can watch TV while in another room.

I'd also say that the musak in that store seems to play through the cooling fans of my PC but that's a different story.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

m00sh (2538182) | about 7 months ago | (#46969247)

Well, duh, don't connect them to the Internet. Unplug them from the wall when they are not in use, and cover over camera lenses with tape. But you should do that already.

Most smartTVs use wireless connection. Even if you disable it, it can be hacked to work while looking like it is disabled.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 7 months ago | (#46969347)

Yes, but they don't come 'hacked' from the factory, so if you don't ever configure it for your network, nobody can connect to it to hack it...

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 7 months ago | (#46970143)

Not if you have a decent router.

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

antdude (79039) | about 7 months ago | (#46969315)

What about mic(rophone)? :P

Re:Don't connect them to the Internet (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46971007)

Not so easy, my friend found out the Samsung TV is still connected to the internet through ...... the HDMI cable..

It is setup in some zero config auto detect crap built into windows

no u (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969005)

we must band together and build wooden robots and wooden devices powered by steam. together we will help stop the flow of electrical current and put an end to this modern day madness!

Re:no u (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969207)

Bender? Is that you?

Re:no u (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969229)

You're right. We must band together and build a new society in which we have a great leader powered by the unified great party. Together we will help to stop the flow of free thoughts through the minds of the infidels, and put an end to this freedom madness!

Re:no u (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46970291)

S. M. Stirling wrote about something like that. It didn't end up well.

No "Telescreen" Tag? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969027)

Seriously, this is precisely what Orwell predicted in 1984. I am going to find everyone I ever accused of being a tinfoil hat paranoic and apologize to them in bended knee...

1984 v 2014 (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | about 7 months ago | (#46969137)

1984: A cautionary tale about the power of the state and the dangers of ubiquitous surveillance.

2014: A real life documentary in which everyone carries around a mobile phone, everyone's car includes trackers with automatic remote location capabilities, major population centres are observed by numerous cameras logging to central databases under government control and backed by technology doing everything from facial recognition to gait analysis, even the privacy of your own home isn't private because there are literally cameras tucked away on your TV, and lots of people are OK with this as long as the pizza is still hot when it gets delivered and arrives in time for tonight's reality TV show.

Re:1984 v 2014 (1)

JoeMerchant (803320) | about 7 months ago | (#46971723)

If you study the eastern philosophies, you will find that hot pizza is more important to happiness than whether or not someone else knows what you are doing.

It would be the height of conceit to believe that what you do in your living room is interesting enough for anyone important or in-power to care about. I worked at a company that had "listening bug" phones on every desk in every office - we still talked openly in front of the phones, openly disparaging the leadership, their policies, their personal habits, etc. and, somehow, when the layoffs came around, we, the brazen flaunters of the surveilance state, were not the ones let go. It's not because we were too valuable or otherwise endeared to the leadership, it was because they simply didn't care enough to listen - even though they had the capability.

If you really have something to hide, then hide it, and know that your fancy new television _could_ spy on you. If you live an unremarkable life - as most of us do, nobody will ever bother to activate the bug in your television, or set up an IR laser reflection listening device on your windows, or tap your phone line, or any of the other hundreds of methods that exist - and mostly have existed for centuries - to find out what you are up to. Conspiracy comes down to who you communicate with, and most acts of terror come down to collection and assembly of dangerous materials / devices. You don't need a smart TV to figure this out.

Re:1984 v 2014 (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 7 months ago | (#46974381)

The problem is that it no longer requires someone to car about what you do.

Computers can analyze the happenings far faster than humans can, and on a far larger scale, and so all they have to do is tell them to look for something interesting, like your drinking habit or having sex with your neighbor. Then they can be notified about things they otherwise wouldn't have time or money to put the effort into finding.

Re: No "Telescreen" Tag? (1)

ComputersKai (3499237) | about 7 months ago | (#46971179)

Hey you there! Comrade! Stop right there and raise your arms, facing the door.

Simple (3, Insightful)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 7 months ago | (#46969041)

Buy a plain, regular computer LCD display. Connect Apple TV to display via HDMI, connect Apple TV to audio with optical output.

There, no physical spying inside your house.

Re:Simple (1)

Nethead (1563) | about 7 months ago | (#46969237)

Computer LCD screen, old Core2 box running Mint Linux, set of old speakers with sub-woofer, VLC, thepiratebay for content. Has served our house well for the last two years.

Re:Simple (1)

silas_moeckel (234313) | about 7 months ago | (#46969269)

Give XBMC or Plex a go a bit nicer interface. Plex client on a Ras PI is dirt cheap low power and still gives you something your in control of.

Re:Simple (1)

CheshireDragon (1183095) | about 7 months ago | (#46969301)

I've done this and it works quite well! I have a Ras Pi on every TV and all linked to a central NAS. Start a movie in the living room and finish it in the bedroom or up stairs in my office.

Re:Simple (1, Informative)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | about 7 months ago | (#46969317)

If you go with XBMC may I recommend setting Dirty Regions to 1 instead of the default of 3? It gives XBMC a nice speed boost and drops its CPU-usage a whole bunch. See http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php... [xbmc.org] for details.

Re:Simple (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969417)

Computer LCD screen, old Core2 box running Mint Linux, set of old speakers with sub-woofer, VLC, thepiratebay for content. Has served our house well for the last two years.

So, your counterargument for the suspicion of illegal spying is felony theft.

Great advice there, genius.

Re:Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969739)

Don't worry, his comment is sure to go over well with a lot of the other Slashdot imbeciles who think it's perfectly just to illegally access content without paying for it because "intellectual property is always wrong" ..as long as it's only the "big guys'" intellectual property we're talking about. Not to mention that by "sticking it to the man" by pirating content they are also sticking it to "the little guy".

Re:Simple (1)

BrianPRabbit (2020846) | about 7 months ago | (#46970041)

I think You have missed a key piece of the views on "piracy" by Many on /., which is summarized nicely by Randall Munroe here [xkcd.com] .

Re:Simple (1)

Nethead (1563) | about 7 months ago | (#46970307)

Exactly. Show me another way I can watch Masterchef Australia in the US (which is produced by Murdock's wife's company, Shine, but still the best of the Masterchef shows.) Most of our viewing is BBC, CBC or PBS. I could get my PBS with an antenna (I donate each year) and if I put up another high gain yagi pointing northwestish I should be able to pull in CBC from Victoria to grab Doc Zone, but why bother? The few US show that I watch are streamed anyway so I'm just saving them bandwidth.

You could bust me for Hot in Cleveland but I haven't found a way to send TV-Land money for that yet. Oh, and Deadliest Catch. But since one of the deckhands burnt down a friends house while shooting up and we had to give him a room for six months, I think that one is paid for. (Looking at you Matt.)

Anyway, my ISP is owned by an American Native Sovereign Tribal Government. Good luck sending them a letter.
Ok, I've about run out of justification here. But as far as felony theft , I've been busted for that back in 1987 (18USC1029). Millions of dollars of long distance calling on Sprint. (did it with a C64) and did 6 years in Club Fed. These days offering unlimited long distance for $100/month would just get you laughed out of the room. I've got a $6/month VoIP line that gives me that, not to speak of the four cell lines I pay under $100/month for. I hope in the not too distant future that we can get the show we want without having to pay for the whole package. Give us the infrastructure and let us pay for and download what show we want to pay for. I'd be more that happy with that.

Until then, well, I'm a felon... again.

Re:Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46972717)

Totally not relevant in any way, shape, or form. You don't have the right to content. Period.

Re:Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46970385)

Copyright is theft.. Hulu blocking access from outside the country is theft. If I can't access what I want legally, then fuck you. I'll find an alternative, the law be damned.

Re:Simple (1)

wkk2 (808881) | about 7 months ago | (#46969359)

Watch out for Ethernet over HDMI bridging one device that has network access to another that you think doesn't have access.

Re:Simple (2)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 7 months ago | (#46969499)

Buy a plain, regular computer LCD display. Connect Apple TV to display via HDMI, connect Apple TV to audio with optical output.

There, no physical spying inside your house.

Except, you know, Apple, who was one of the first corporations on the NSA's list.

The best way to prevent the NSA from spying on you is to vote for people that intend to disband the agency.

Re:Simple (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 7 months ago | (#46969625)

There, no physical spying inside your house.

The Apple TV has no camera or microphone.

Re:Simple (1)

BrianPRabbit (2020846) | about 7 months ago | (#46970053)

Except, you know, Apple, who was one of the first corporations on the NSA's list.

No, Apple was actually one of the last corporations on the list according to this [theguardian.com] . Have any evidence to the contrary?

Re:Simple (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 7 months ago | (#46971233)

Did you see those slides where GCHQ and the NSA talk about intercepting hardware as it is being shipped to you and installing bugs? Dumb TVs are not safe either.

It isn't necessary to forego smart TVs completely, just get one without a camera or microphone. It would be about as safe as a dumb TV then.

DumbTube (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969087)

Haha! My DumbTube is impenetrable!

Eavesdropping With a Smart TV (1)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about 7 months ago | (#46969251)

How about removable microphone and camera modules? Is there any way for this to happen for devices that are large enough to have them?

I won't get one... (2)

CheshireDragon (1183095) | about 7 months ago | (#46969289)

I've never bought and I will never buy a Snart TV. My current TV does have a RJ-45 if I care to hook it up to the network, but I have never used that port ONCE in the 2½yrs I have owned the TV. Nor does it have a mic and camera in it. However, if they become like the Snart phone then I will be forced to buy one as the 'dumb' ones will be fewer and fewer. If so, I will just open it up and physically cut out the camera and mic. Problem solved. Of course, I do believe there will be manufacturers out there that will still make TVs without a camera and mic for many years to come. Probably even long after I am gone.

Re:I won't get one... (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 7 months ago | (#46969371)

There'll probably be some sort of physical intrusion detector that'll flag you up as a tairst if you do that.

Or worse, it'll invalidate your guarantee.

So we had the name wrong all along? (2)

TigerPlish (174064) | about 7 months ago | (#46969559)

So we've been calling it "television" but it turns out the real name is Televisor, isn't it.

Future's so bright I need to wear shades, indeed.

Re:So we had the name wrong all along? (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 7 months ago | (#46971345)

In fact, in Spanish, the word for a TV set is "televisor."

Not just Soviet Russia? (5, Funny)

Wootery (1087023) | about 7 months ago | (#46969653)

All these comments, and not even a nod?

*Ahem*

In Soviet Russia, TV watches you.

Re:Not just Soviet Russia? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46970995)

That was the old slashdot, this is beta

captcha: CONDEMN

English or Bingo? (1)

Kangburra (911213) | about 7 months ago | (#46969841)

A article? Really? No-one even reads these before they get posted anymore?

tFUCKEIR (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46969843)

EFNet, and 4p4ly errors. Future I

Why Limit Yourself To A TV? (1)

IonOtter (629215) | about 7 months ago | (#46970203)

I bought a LCD projector, and high-end computer speakers, years ago when I was on a ship. Everyone else on board bought nice LCD screens, and the moment we hit heavy weather, I could hear all those nice LCD screens falling all over the place.

My projector was strapped down, and never moved. By using a bed sheet, I had the largest "TV" of anyone on the ship. All with the footprint of two boxes of Ritz crackers.

It migrated with me to my current home, and it works perfectly against the wall, again, giving me the largest screen for the money. If I were to paint a silver-backed white screen and edge it with molding, I'd have a proper movie screen.

I can use it with my Linux box, my Windoze box, my laptop, a guest's laptop, their iPad, the DVD player, Boxee, X-Box 360...pretty much anything out there. The only thing I *can't* use with it, is the Kinect or similar devices.

I don't normally do this, but (1)

denmarkw00t (892627) | about 7 months ago | (#46970865)

A article

one simple way.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46970939)

One simple way would be to require all devices with cameras / microphones to have led's that would light up whenever they are in use. These led's must be using physical triggers so they cannot be disabled in software. Maybe even playback some sound when it gets activated.

Another thing would be to require that all tv's would be equipped with a physical switch that would turn off power to both the mic and camera.

Re:one simple way.. (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 7 months ago | (#46971341)

But, but, that would require government getting involved, and the libertarian narrative won't allow that. The free market will dictate that these safeguards exist if they are supposed to exist. Right?

1984 (1)

Dabido (802599) | about 7 months ago | (#46977237)

Bees the size of rats, suck on rats the size of cats

Beware the savage door, Of 1984

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?