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Boeing and BlackBerry Making a Self-Destructing Phone

DigitAl56K Nevermind the circumvention (63 comments)

For almost any use you might have the biggest threat to the security is going to be all the ways that your communications can be compromised while you are actually using it. Baseband exploits, protocol exploits, software vulnerabilities, poor or crippled RNGs, compromised platform or application updates, cloud storage of sensitive information, etc. etc. the list goes on.

Oh what? It can self destruct? It's probably way too late by then, and assuming it's been compromised the attackers would probably rather you keep the thing. Less work for them!

yesterday
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Staples: Breach May Have Affected 1.16 Million Customers' Cards

DigitAl56K Re: Neener (92 comments)

Or Google Wallet.

Let's not credit Apple alone with a solution when there are at least two major players in that market both encompassing a large install base and indeed Apple bringing their solution to the table much later.

yesterday
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Google Proposes To Warn People About Non-SSL Web Sites

DigitAl56K Re:The major downside to this.. (391 comments)

A security feature does not have to be perfect to provide value. The user is still significantly more protected with HTTPS than with HTTP.

That is not in dispute. But even with HTTPS there are many risk factors that can be evaluated, including characteristics of the HTTPS connection itself and other factors beyond that, that could be used to present a more accurate assessment of "risk level" to an end user that is much better than teaching the falsehood that "if it's https, it's secure and I don't have to worry". Because when everything is https, the web will definitely be neither secure nor "safe".

2 days ago
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Google Proposes To Warn People About Non-SSL Web Sites

DigitAl56K The major downside to this.. (391 comments)

The major downside to this is promoting the idea that an https connection is "secure", because especially when it comes to https, there are so many different attacks to level against both an end user and a host that we'd be better using a risk grading system.

3 days ago
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Top Five Theaters Won't Show "The Interview" Sony Cancels Release

DigitAl56K Re:Sets a precedent (580 comments)

I thought the three-letter agencies were spying on all of us to prevent things like this - you know, stop the terr'ists, protect our freedoms, etc. etc.

Seems like a vote of no confidence from various businesses here...

3 days ago
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BitTorrent Launches Project Maelstrom, the First Torrent-Based Browser

DigitAl56K Re:Interesting if done right (67 comments)

One of the reasons why the world-wide web is buried in a sea of advertising is that the costs associated with hosting a web-site increase as the site becomes more popular.

Costs per visitor are usually extremely small.

The main reason the www has so much advertising is that almost nobody wants to pay for content, yet content is not free to produce, and even if you come up with a schema for which some people will pay, your competitors will steal all your volume by offering something closer to free (or supported by advertising), and volume is essential for almost all internet-based businesses.

None of this will change because of the distribution method. Content is still not free to produce.

about two weeks ago
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Ofcom Will Remove Mandatory Ham Callsign ID Interval, Allow Encryption For Some

DigitAl56K Licensed operators kill it (57 comments)

I have a scanner and periodically listen to HAM and GRMS channels, and my opinion is that licensed operators have killed the platform. In my area conversation is about *absolutely f'ing nothing of interest to almost anyone*, some douche periodically transmits junk to annoy everyone else, and any time someone with an interesting use comes along someone who knows all about the rules scares them away - doubtlessly feeling like they've just done everyone a great service. And perhaps keeping the airwaves clear for emergencies is one idea, but having those airwaves there and nobody using them for anything useful most of the time is such a waste.

I realize Slashdot is full of HAMs waiting for the next disaster so they can save us all with their radios as our last bastions of hope, but there is my anecdotal personal opinion for you. Maybe traditional HAM would be more popular vs e.g. encryption/packet radio if traditional licensees weren't so anal.

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Re:Good God! (528 comments)

What makes Sony relevant as a company are it's people, their skills, their connections, the power they have to move the industry, the content rights they own, the technologies and products they develop, their brand, etc. etc.

100tb can leak today and be irrelevant within 12 months because life continues and projects move on. I'd say in the wake of massive disclosure employee morale may be the biggest factor in the recovery.

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Re:Sad? Saddest? (528 comments)

And you feel that this is equivalent, do you? What % of Sony employees do you believe actually had a hand in the decision to use the DRM, knew how it worked, and knew that it had a backdoor?

If I had to guess, it would probably be fewer than 50.

I would also guess that most people involved in shipping off the Jews knew they were doing something pretty bad.

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Not just insurance info (528 comments)

I've just been reading some of the articles, and it seems that in fact Sony has unfortunately been storing a lot of communication that contains discussion of medical issues amongst other things.

This is an example of where a company could have done a better job of assessing the risk of retained data becoming a liability and applied suitable retention policies and other risk mitigation strategies like encryped storage (some articles suggest most files were not meaningfully protected).

IT folks and legal departments in today's climate should be asking themselves what is being stored, what are thr benefits, what is a liability, what is the actual business need, what are the mitigation options.

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Re:Medical records? (528 comments)

That's what I thought. I guess "insurance information" doesn't have enough scare factor for a story.

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Re:Sad? Saddest? (528 comments)

Bearing a grudge against a company for the decisions of it's higher-ups is one thing, wishing horrors upon the majority of employees who are probably everyday folk earning a living - many probably sharing your view on the matter of the rootkit saga - might be going a little too far...

about two weeks ago
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The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

DigitAl56K Medical records? (528 comments)

What is Sony doing with medical records?

about two weeks ago
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Book Review: Bulletproof SSL and TLS

DigitAl56K Re:HEY DICE, WHAT THE FUCKHAPPENED TO MODERATING? (92 comments)

I also suspect moderation has slowed down. I suspect more generally long-term members with good karma and mod points have been coming here less due to the content and the beta site.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What's the Most Hackable Car?

DigitAl56K Re:I just want to... (195 comments)

Why not just have a decent aftermarket radio installed and be done with all those problems?

Assuming the manufacturer hasn't stuffed major functionality of the car inside the radio/nav system and you're willing to risk a hit on resale value by losing some of the standard features.

about a month ago
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Toyota Names Upcoming Hydrogen Fuel Cell Car

DigitAl56K Re:oh, I thought it was Japanese for "Hindenberg" (194 comments)

seriously, folks, I gotta tell ya, it drives 300 miles, period. there is one fuelling station in the country

So you're really saying unless you want to run out of fuel it has a maximum range of 150 miles from a fixed location. Doesn't seem to threaten Tesla too much...

about a month ago
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Fascinating Rosetta Image Captures Philae's Comet Bounce

DigitAl56K Can Rosetta power Philae? (69 comments)

I haven't really been following this too closely so this may be entirely impossible, but if Philae is located, could Rosetta be positioned to reflect enough sunlight onto Philae to help power it?

about a month ago
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Google Wallet API For Digital Goods Will Be Retired On March 2, 2015

DigitAl56K Doing Google Wallet quietly? Shocker... (105 comments)

Google do everything with Wallet quietly. I bet a good chunk of Android users don't even know Wallet exists because Google never market it, which is a shame because it actually works really well.

about a month ago
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Android 5.0 'Lollipop' vs. iOS 8: More Similar Than Ever

DigitAl56K Re:When will I get it on my Nexus 5? (178 comments)

Flashing the factory image will do a wipe if you follow the instructions on Google's download page because it has you unlock the bootloader, which causes the device to erase itself. There's also a command argument in flash-all.bat that causes a wipe.

Usually someone will capture and post a link to the OTA download (who knows why Google won't just post it themselves...) and you _can_ "sideload" that fairly easily using adb without losing all your user data. This is by far the easiest method if you don't need to update right this second but you don't want to wait until Google finally gets around to allowing the update for your device.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Nanny State Bans Many Porn Acts in UK

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  about two weeks ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "The Independent reports that the UK's Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014 has banned a long list of sex acts from Video-On-Demand pornography produced in the UK, many with no obvious reason. The restrictions "appear to make no distinction between consensual and non-consensual practices between adults".

A list of banned acts can be found in TFA, and include use of physical restraints, spanking, and humiliation. I wonder how long it will be before sites hosting content featuring such terrible, heinous, immoral acts are permanently blocked by the UK's net filter."
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Websites Still Failing Basic Privacy Practices

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "Do you ever find it surprising that large companies still can't get down the basics of privacy and security on the web? Today I went to enter a competition from Duracell to win a Nintendo Wii by filling out an online form that requires entering your full name, address, and date of birth, and then proceeds to submit it via an unencrypted HTTP POST. The ultimate irony? The message at the bottom of the page that reads,

"Trust is a cornerstone of our corporate mission, and the success of our business depends on it. P&G is committed to maintaining your trust by protecting personal information we collect."

Which websites have you found to be lacking in their basic privacy practices?"
Link to Original Source

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MEDUSA Ray Gun Creates Voices In Your Head

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "NewScientist is reporting on a US company, Sierra Nevada Corporation, that is ready to produce a crowd-control device which uses microwaves to heat the tissues inside your head so rapidly that the shockwaves resulting actually create sound. The device is named MEDUSA (Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio) and can be targeted using broad or narrow beams. From the article:

MEDUSA involves a microwave auditory effect "loud" enough to cause discomfort or even incapacitation. Sadovnik says that normal audio safety limits do not apply since the sound does not enter through the eardrums.

A member of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Illinois in Chicago who has also worked on the technique has commented that while feasible, attaining the necessary volume might involve power levels that could cause neural damage.

It is estimated that a demonstration version could be built within a year."

Link to Original Source

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AVG 8 Causing Trouble For Web Analytics?

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "The Register is reporting that AVG 8 includes as part of its anti-virus scanner Linkscanner, technology acquired by the company that scans results from popular search engines including Google, Yahoo!, and Live Search before you visit them. This apparently has resulted in traffic for some sites to increase by as much as 80%, confusing web analytics because real visits may not have increased at all. Approximately 28% of AVG users worldwide are now using AVG 8, so this problem has plenty of scope for growth.

How will analytic services react to the effects of prescanning, and what benefits does prescanning hold over real-time transport scanning? Further, even if prescanning protects your computer does it ultimately pose a risk to your personal security? In May Slashdot informed us that the FBI had raided homes of people who had merely clicked links to illegal pornography. When your computer is automatically clicking search results for you maybe you had better be careful what search terms you use."

Link to Original Source
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US to employ overhead spying domestically

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "The Washington Post reports that, "The Bush administration said yesterday that it plans to start using the nation's most advanced spy technology for domestic purposes soon" and that Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has said that "Sophisticated overhead sensor data will be used for law enforcement". Last year CNET reported on at least one county in North Carolina already using a UAV to "monitor gatherings of motorcycle riders at the Gaston County fairgrounds from just a few hundred feet in the air — close enough to identify faces".

Discovery Channel's Future Weapons has provided insight into numerous UAVs, including the Fire Scout, Global Hawk, Predator 2, and the Dominator, their coverage of the Predator 2 particularly demonstrating surveillance and tracking capabilities of these units.

According to DefenseNews the US Air Force just announced the purchase of 28 Predators as part of a contract awarded to General Atomics. The US Air Force has just begun running ads on cable TV as part of their "Above All" campaign that feature the UAVs (sorry, no online video yet).

Initially, it appears that the administration plans to leverage conventional satellites for domestic surveillance purposes.

Behave yourself, citizens."

Link to Original Source
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How do you securely change your e-nationality?

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  about 7 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "Being a foreigner in the US has its ups and downs. One of the downs I face stems from the music industry's obsession with territory restrictions. Not only am I unable to purchase certain UK releases online despite being able to import CDs, but I also can't listen to most of the webcasting radio stations near my home because they've had to implement IP->Geo lockouts. This leads to a cultural disconnect for me that the Internet really ought to solve. If you've ever graced the forums of an online music store you have likely seen dozens of users around the globe with similar complaints, and in general the only solution is to find an open proxy in another country to bypass the artificial barriers.

Unfortunately many open proxies are not intended for medium-high bandwidth applications, and may be unknowing victims of malware designed to sniff and steal information. Are there any reputable secure and/or trustworthy commercial proxy/tunneling services designed to provide end-points in specific countries?"
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When will smart phone plans become affordable?

DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 7 years ago

DigitAl56K (805623) writes "When my old no thrills voice-only handset finally began giving up the ghost last week I decided it was time to join my colleagues and jump on the smart phone bandwagon. Mobile IM, web, GPS and music downloads all beckoned. Then I totaled up the cost of my new wireless plan. Ouch!

The offerings from the leading US wireless providers are incredibly expensive. A typical voice plan coupled with basic personal Blackberry service can easily cost over $100 and depending on the network other basic features push the monthly rate higher still. Limited or unlimited messages, M2M messages, and night or weekend calling often cost extra. Users buying handsets advertised as having GPS may be unpleasantly surprised to find additional monthly service subscriptions are required to use all or some parts of these services, such as voiced directions. In the end you're likely to pay more for a cellphone with basic smart phone functionality than you do for digital TV and high speed Internet combined, even without high-tech features like GPS included, and most of the service agreements although offering unlimited data for what are clearly multimedia-enabled devices prohibit medium-high bandwidth applications regardless.

How long must we wait for todays smart phones to become the norm and for some level of sanity to take hold in wireless plan rates?"
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DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  more than 7 years ago

DigitAl56K writes "Star Wars fans rejoice! Four years after their original fan film saw them picking up light sabers and taking to battle, Ryan Wieber and Michael Scott have published RvD2. The choreography and attention to detail strongly rival the best efforts of Lucasfilm, as does the sound track.

A low resolution version of RvD2 is available on YouTube, and an HD version (429MB) can be downloaded from DivX Stage6. You can also order the original soundtrack and "Making of" videos via ryanvsdorkman.com, as well as donating to their projects."
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DigitAl56K DigitAl56K writes  |  about 8 years ago

DigitAl56K writes "Brian Transeau (BT) is a pioneer of the electronica genre who helped to define trance in the early '90s. His career is diverse with a background in classic music and long history of film scoring, but it is arguably his pursuit of using new technology in music that distinguishes him as an artist. He's a recognized master of audio synthesis and engineering, he writes his own software instruments and effects, and he's famous for his live shows — which he often plays real-time from a laptop computer.

His latest album, This Binary Universe, is released on CD+DVD and mastered in DTS digital surround, accompanied by visuals ranging from CGI to watercolors produced by artists who participate on deviantART. One track on the album is written entirely in Csound, a synthesis scripting language and renderer where the instruments, effects, and score are composed using only a text editor.

BT is currently on tour with electonica veteran Thomas Dolby. The shows not only feature visuals from the album rendered live, but also artwork from members of deviantART local to each area, and a full surround sound audio environment.

The DivX Stage6 team interviewed BT to discuss his career, latest album, use of technology in music, mathematics in music and in nature, and more. We also asked him how he feels about people who download music. The response was both interesting and honest, and gave significant insight into the ethical views of a real artist, as well as dispelling some of the common myths around the effect of piracy on artists large and small.

The complete interview is available from the BT channel on DivX Stage6, including the video for track 4 from his album, entitled "1.618" after the golden ratio, in DivX HD with MP3 Surroud."

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