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Cause of Global Warming 'Hiatus' Found Deep In the Atlantic

beh Re:Every week there's a new explanation of the hia (458 comments)

Strange how, just a knee-jerk you'll find some people defending the science, there are those that have the same knee-jerk reaction against any findings in this area. With all that uncontrollable knee-jerking on both sides - it seems that we have another great argument for universal health care, to get people's knees fixed again... But I digress...

Whether climate change is man-made or not - I don't think there is too much debate left on the matter. But, I'm no climate scientist, so for me personally it's a matter of "belief" that mankind is behind this. We may get some theories and models wrong on how fast global warming works - or why there may be a hiatus in it.

The question of whether we're behind this - take two past events and see how much influence we might have:

Remember the Icelandic volcano a few years back - in response to the volcanic ash, we grounded a lot of flights for a few days - and even in that time, we could measure how much the air changed - just by taking planes out of the picture for a few days.

Secondly, if you think mankind's influence isn't large enough given the size of the planet - look back at climate records around the time Krakatoa blew up - that one mountain exploding had a measurable impact on temperature and weather for 5 years; so, if a _single_ mountain on one day can create that kind of change -- are you sure, all of our industries around the world together over the course of years CAN'T?

What the planet is "too large for", is for us to do some quick and easy experiments to actually test our hypotheses quickly - so climate science does what it can mostly from observation and trying to identify as many factors as possible that DO have a measurable impact in order to MODEL what's going to happen and then wait and see how close these models correlate with what's happening.

about two weeks ago
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The IPv4 Internet Hiccups

beh Lack of incentives...? (248 comments)

To some degree obviously, there is a lack of incentives for ISPs to change - if they still have enough addresses for themselves, then switching to IPv6 is only costs, not benefits.

Maybe some of the larger sites, like youtube, facebook, wikipedia should have a meeting to discuss the switch-over and then start shaping IPv4 traffic - just reduce capacity on IPv4 by 5% every month and see how long it will be, before ISPs will lose customers if they DON'T switch to IPv6...

about three weeks ago
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Amputee Is German Long Jump Champion

beh Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (175 comments)

I would guess they mean it's longer because they count its length as one piece - not as a lower leg and a foot.

Still - in terms of dimensions, it needs to be a good match with his other leg -- unlike Pistorius who would have been able to go for optimized prosthetics on both legs that would be better than "normal" legs might be... (i.e. watch the Aimee Mullins TED talk on how she can vary her height fairly significantly just through the choice of legs she wears)...

about a month ago
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Amputee Is German Long Jump Champion

beh Re:No, no unfair advantage at all... (175 comments)

Hmm - I could partially understand the extra strength and mechanical advantage in the Pistorius case - I can't quite see it with Markus Rehm.

Pistorius had BOTH legs amputated, so you can potentially improve on both sides. Rehm had ONE leg amputated - adding extra length doesn't make any sense one one side only. Similarly, I would guess it would make it very difficult to run evenly, if the prosthetic leg doesn't about match the other one in length, in "bounce" (in the step), ...

about a month ago
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Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix

beh Re:Question... -- ? (215 comments)

I did not say purely that reading about -- should tell you about security alone. IIRC my original incident with -- was a colleague setting me a teaser on trying to find out how to delete a file called '-f'; and me first having to figure out, that 'rm ??' reads like delete all files with two character filenames (of which there was only the '-f' file), but not seeing that the ?? actually gets expanded to all the two character filenames by the shell; rm never sees the '??' but instead only sees the filenames - and obviously, it can't discern whether a parameter of '-f' was expanded from the filename -f or intentionally given as a parameter.

If you learn that - you'll get a better understanding of how the system works - and that _in turn_ will help you get a better grasp on what could or would go on and particularly, what could go WRONG, in a system.

about 2 months ago
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Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix

beh Re:Question... -- ? (215 comments)

Sorry, if that appears harsh - but sometimes it pays to read manuals and try and understand what you're doing and how the stuff works.

I don't exactly remember when I learnt it first - but I DID already know when I also got told about it during my CS BSc degree course (probably 1st or 2nd year - which would place it about 1998-2000).

If you need to code stuff "securely", you need to understand how stuff works -- I don't think of myself as a particularly apt security coder or hacker - I mainly specialise on internal systems integration, not so much web or other front-end stuff, so I have the luxury that I already know the data is "sane", before it gets to me - and I "only" need to figure out how to transform it and where to send it on to.

Here are a few pointers, where you might read about it:

http://pubs.opengroup.org/onli...
"Guideline 10:
        The first -- argument that is not an option-argument should be accepted as a delimiter indicating the end of options. Any following arguments should be treated as operands, even if they begin with the '-' character."

Even wikipedia mentions it - even though not strictly a "developer" resource:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C...

"In Unix-like systems, the ASCII hyphen-minus is commonly used to specify options. The character is usually followed by one or more letters. Two hyphen-minus characters ( -- ) often indicate that the remaining arguments should not be treated as options, which is useful for example if a file name itself begins with a hyphen, or if further arguments are meant for an inner command. Double hyphen-minuses are also sometimes used to prefix "long options" where more descriptive option names are used. This is a common feature of GNU software. The getopt function and program, and the getopts command are usually used for parsing command-line options."

If that's too far to go - try "man getopt" on your linux machine:

  "
            The parameters getopt is called with can be divided into two parts:
              options which modify the way getopt will parse (options and
              -o|--options optstring in the SYNOPSIS), and the parameters which are
              to be parsed (parameters in the SYNOPSIS). The second part will start
              at the first non-option parameter that is not an option argument, or
              after the first occurrence of `--'. If no `-o' or `--options' option
              is found in the first part, the first parameter of the second part is
              used as the short options string.
"

man rm - and even rm --help on linux show it:
"
              To remove a file whose name starts with a '-', for example '-foo', use
              one of these commands:

                            rm -- -foo
" ...though without explaining the "--" in general...

man chown doesn't mention it, but refers to the full documentation in texinfo and how to access it - that one says under "Common options"

"
    `--'
          Delimit the option list. Later arguments, if any, are treated as
          operands even if they begin with `-'. For example, `sort -- -r'
          reads from the file named `-r'.
"

The information is there - and in _lots_ of places - but it DOES require to occasionally read man pages or general intros, rather than using trial and error and just bodging around until something seems to work.

But, yes, it's a lot of material, and not everyone has the time to read everything -- for me this is also why I mostly rely on others to figure out system security issues... The problem to me seems more that a lot of "learn this in 5 mins" type tutorials don't include it purely for lack of time, and many just use those and still put the results up on the web somewhere.

 

about 2 months ago
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Exploiting Wildcards On Linux/Unix

beh Question... -- ? (215 comments)

Who does NOT use -- in their scripts, if they're safety conscious?

        rm -i -- *

Problem solved?

Normal programs should stop processing options after a (standalone) "--" and take everything following it as regular parameters. getopt and similar libraries handle this automatically.

I really wouldn't class the "use of wildcards" as a security risk - the security risk is the developer that doesn't know what he's doing.
Would command line handling be a security risk, if someone would add a --superuser-rm option to his code and execute "rm -rf /" as root immediately afterwards?

about 2 months ago
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Why Amazon Might Want a Big Piece of the Smartphone Market

beh Re:In other news (61 comments)

Think about it this way - before Apple made their inroads into the phone market, the dominant players were companies you don't even hear much about as phone makers any more (Nokia, Ericsson, ...) and back then people thought, Apple wouldn't be able to make any significant inroads into that market either.

In fact, they pretty much disrupted the entire sector in the process - they may not be the market leader by market share, but they managed to build up and retain the "premium" brand image in the market - and keep the highest share of profits in that market.

As for Amazon - there are two things at play here: Sure, anyone can install amazon's app on the iphone - but it doesn't come pre-installed; the iTunes store does; so on the app side, they can only profit from people who go and install their app first - and somehow I can't see Jeff Bezos talking Apple into _please_ include the Amazon store into the default apps on the phone. Apple would probably rather start entering Amazon's business rather than allowing amazon to add an app to the base iOS which will be in part competition to the iTunes store.

Secondly, I would expect Apple to move more into the cloud market - which will be tied in nicely with iOS - and which might end up being a threat to Amazon's cloud services.

Amazon is large enough and has the technical background to try and successfully bring a new phone to the market - I'm not quite sure, though, whether they have something really new to bring to the table that others don't have and which would allow them to disrupt the market in a way large enough to make it pay off...

about 2 months ago
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How Tim Cook Is Filling Steve Jobs's Shoes

beh Re:Creativity vs innovation (209 comments)

I think the problem is more that many (most?) people seem to think that being creative and being innovative is the same thing. It isn't.

Steve Jobs may not have been the most creative person on the planet - but he was possibly one of the most innovative.

It's all well and good if you think of an idea on how to beat cancer - but the idea is nothing if you can't realize it.

Maybe Xerox had the first graphical user interface - but they had fairly little idea on what to do with it - Jobs did - and while many people will happily point out that Xerox had a mouse and GUI before Apple got there (and they're right) - how many can honestly say they had heard of a mouse and graphical user interfaces BEFORE they had seen one on an Apple computer or one of the countless GUIs that followed?

How many phones today would have touch screens and controls that look eerily similar to the iPhone ones, if the iPhone wouldn't have shown it before? (it doesn't matter, if you know a single phone before that had a touch screen - physically having the touch screen is not the same as seeing how it was all put together first).

Tablets had been around before the iPad - but what kind of sales did they have before? And what kind of sales do they have now? And - those that are selling the best now, in terms of their usability, do they look a damn sight more like the iPad, or more like whatever tablets were there before?

All those are cases of INNOVATIONs brought by Apple and which ultimately massively changed the face of the markets that they went into.

Another pointer on how Apple did something great and something new?

Name the last Samsung product launched that had a significant number of other players in the industry immediately clamoring to make something similar or "better"? When was the last time LG did? Google? Google possibly did with gmail - but search engines were there before, even large and well known ones.

Jobs was great in seeing something and seeing how it could be made useful far beyond what their original creators might have done.

about 3 months ago
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Google Has Received Over 41,000 Requests To "Forget" Personal Information

beh Re:Business with whom?... (138 comments)

I believe his problems weren't with banks, but rather potential customers for his business - who just looked at his background to see what kind of person they're dealing with.

Banks do have systems of their own that use data that is also not for public consumption to determine whether or not to lend you money - here the google search wouldn't have been a problem; as his credit record would have had that information on it either way.

about 3 months ago
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Google Has Received Over 41,000 Requests To "Forget" Personal Information

beh Re:The most amusing thing about this law... (138 comments)

It doesn't matter in his case - if he wants to run a business, he might not even get a chance to prove that the issue is outdated, if it still ranks highly in google searches.

In his position it was probably the choice between a rock and a hard place - without the court case, he still would have trouble with his business; now with that case to his name, you might hope it's a little less of a problem (again - the news reports now mentioning his name all also list that it's about skewed search results regarding an outdated financial problem). To me, seeking redress for that seems fair; but yes, there will still be people that will not want to get into business dealings with him because of the court case - he can only hope that people will now also see the reason for the case; as opposed to just seeing a forced property sale.

It's still bad information about him - but there is less information asymmetry now, as the reports don't JUST mention the forced sale, but also mention that the financial woes are way behind him. Seeing those two things together, is fair reporting of the case. Seeing just the forced sale in the search results is a massively negatively skewed view on the case.

about 3 months ago
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Google Has Received Over 41,000 Requests To "Forget" Personal Information

beh Re:Google has NO responsiblity whatsover (138 comments)

You probably don't want to be misquoted - or quoted completely out of context - why should anyone else be?

I'm not sure about where you are, but police records aren't public in most places - but they are available for relevant searches; i.e. to find out whether someone is a sex-offender before allowing them to work with children, you consult police records - and inside of that context that is perfectly legitimate - and police records are the only source you should trust for this purpose, too.

Similarly, if I ran for public office, people would probably just not quickly scan google to see whether I'm a "decent" candidate; other sources would come into play fairly automatically, because I'd be in the spotlight anyway.

But, taking your stance - where exactly will you draw the line?
Should Star Wars Kid forever be hunted and ridiculed, because you'll find this stupid video if you entered the guys name even 20 years later - just because that is the one thing in his life that went completely viral? Alternatively, just because YOU might think - in this case, it's a kid; that has no bearing on his current life - can you picture that OTHERS would still ridicule him at his workplace or other places, just because they happened to come across that stupid video?

Similarly, say, if you did something wrong in the past - that I would know about - if you ever pissed me off, I could possibly permanently ruin your search results by making that issue "bubble up" (or if I don't want to do it myself, pay some SEO guy a few quid, just to ensure that THAT story will feature fairly close to the top when searching for your name). Or just outright slander you on a web site outside your national jurisdiction - just so you can't have it removed and then ensure that comes up high in google searches.

about 3 months ago
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Google Has Received Over 41,000 Requests To "Forget" Personal Information

beh Re:The most amusing thing about this law... (138 comments)

Correct - he's now known everywhere for it - but the NEW articles also mention that this was an old issue that has long been resolved.

The old articles only mentioned the forced property sale, but not the end of his financial troubles later.

What, do you think, is better for him?

I would say, the new situation is a lot better for him - yes, people will no about his financial situation WAY past; but right now they also now, that it is PAST - not current.

Sure, it would have been better for him, if it would have been resolved quietly without his name getting dragged across net news; but, at least, this time no news are saying anything that his finances ARE a problem. His issue before was that people assumed he would STILL be a financial liability, as google listed the forced property sale near the top of the search results - not the absence of more financial issues in the last few years.

You COULD glance that information, if you carefully looked through all the data - but who takes that time with every single google search? What doesn't look quickly, whether there is another "solution" to your problem, when the first one doesn't immediately look palatable?

about 3 months ago
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Google Has Received Over 41,000 Requests To "Forget" Personal Information

beh Re:Google has NO responsiblity whatsover (138 comments)

You're missing two points -
a) "It has long been known..." - yes, it has long been known you need to be careful about what you put on-line. But what you're missing is that we learnt this the hard way - by some people first making that mistake; and now maybe finding that they can't rid themselves of it. That _future_ people have that knowledge is no help for those that did fall into the trap before they knew it would be one. Secondly, and more importantly, in my youth I certainly said things I would no longer support today - but if my "opponents" dig out one such story and ensure that it gets linked to a lot (negative SEO), it will stay near the top of the search results - no matter, what I would say today or even have said for the past 10-15 years. Basically, it would mean that you shouldn't say anything in public any more, unless you're willing to stick with that statement forever and never change your mind (even if you learnt more that WOULD make you change your mind).

b) "All they did was report that A said X about B" - correct - but in the case of the guy in spain who brought up the lawsuit in the first place, there is also an information asymmetry at work against you or anyone else. Papers need to publish certain information (like court notices), but there is no legal requirement to publish that the initial problem situation has long been resolved. Therefore the google search results will find "A is in trouble" (10 years ago), but not necessarily "A got out of trouble and got his life back together again" (8 years ago). Therefore the google search results will only show the problem - not that the problem got solved. A look in the bailiffs office record would also show that the problem is past - basically, the record from 10 years ago would carry information that it got resolved 8 years ago; and would show no further issues. With the newspaper's editing - the original article will not be updated; so either google's search finds the resolution of the problem 8 years ago and ranks it accordingly; or it will only give you the link to the original now outdated article with no information about whether the problem has been resolved and when.

By being able to get old search results removed if they're outdated, you don't remove your original record - it would still be visible at the bailiff's office (or for a paedophile example in police records - which are the only source you SHOULD use as a definitive reference) - so "B" can't get out of his responsibilities; B can only influence the filter bubble that is in the google search results.

about 3 months ago
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Pedophile Asks To Be Deleted From Google Search After European Court Ruling

beh Re:I beg to differ. (370 comments)

I don't think they have much of a chance - a politician can't argue that his former record is irrelevant to his current re-election campaign -- similarly a doctor asking for bad reviews to be removed; unless maybe they are very old bad reviews and new reviews are better.

I would think these cases are on par with some stupid court cases, we've seen elsewhere - like McDonalds being forced to not make their coffee quite as hot as it used to, because someone might scald themselves. There are always people that will try and immediately get an advantage out of a situation. Whether they'll get through with it is a wholly different matter - but I think just from the headlines, that these people will have a tough time arguing that this is a "irrelevant" old news.

about 4 months ago
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Pedophile Asks To Be Deleted From Google Search After European Court Ruling

beh Re:Insanity (370 comments)

I think you can answer that question yourself:

What if mychildp*rn.com moved from the US to a country where child-p*rn wouldn't be illegal. Do you think the US would accept that site still serving "the US market"?

Obivously, this example is weaker, but I think without a presence in Europe, it would be (more) difficult to do business there - potentially giving rise to any competitor who WOULD be willing to go through with this and would therefore be in a better position to serve the markets here (don't think about the search itself, think about the advertising that makes their income!).

about 4 months ago
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EU Court Backs 'Right To Be Forgotten'

beh Re:Unworkable (153 comments)

Somehow, showing one person that wasn't much harmed by it isn't really much in terms of proving the point -

- Bill Gates rise long predated the kind of easy information retrieval, we have now.

- X people in the US owning guns doesn't detract from the fact, that the US with it's liberal gun laws has the highest relative number of gun related deaths. My guess is, saying my neighbour owns a gun and I'm still alive isn't much consolation to those who have lost loved ones at the Columbine shooting or any other shooting that is.

- "You live with what you've done" - true, no discussion there - but seeing similarly bogus discussions levelled at some politicians for stuff they've said 20 years ago - opinions they have changed _loooooong_ ago - it still makes them targets now; i.e. any good political argument they might bring on a case NOW gets diminished by them having been wrong on an unrelated issue way back when.

- "Allowing people to erase their past" - stupid argument from your side - the EU case says nothing that a "repeat offender" gets their records cleared -- and the guy wouldn't have won the right to have that old story removed from a public search engine's index, if he still had issues about finances.

- "People have a right to evaluate who they are hiring as a camp counselor for girl guides summer camp" - sure, but that is about criminal records, which noone is asking to remove.

- "who they rent an apartment to" - this is probably the crux of it; sure, as a landlord I'd like to know, if a potential tenant can pay his rent. But - should I be allowed to turn down a tenant who has had no financial problems the last 10 years based on him having had them 15 years ago (and repaid everything long ago) - you can bet that the repossession will still show up in the search index, but once you repay a debt, that isn't published - your record may just get removed: And so you're still left with a marker for something that was loooooooooooong ago and completely irrelevant for the current time.

What you want to do is to be allowed to discriminate based on outdated information; which is a perfectly good reason, why someone else might want to have outdated information removed from _search indices_. Not full removal of data - so, if you know specific places where to look, you'll still get the information - and you know the _context_ in which you're getting them, but not in a public search index of everything, where most people don't care about the context and will just see "Repossession? That's bad! I won't do business with him!".

To not allow that would also mean it would be irrelevant to try for social rehabilitation of people in prison - even if you complete your jail term, everyone should be able to discriminate against you for the rest of your life - simply because everyone will just see "gone to prison" (20 years ago) in a public search index of newspaper articles, but not see "released from prison" (19 years ago) as that usually doesn't get published - and the police record that DOES have that kind of information is not easily searchable: with good reason, because that information needs to be seen in context. And if you're still worried - having the criminal record will still ensure that that person shouldn't become a girl scout counselor.

about 4 months ago
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EU Court Backs 'Right To Be Forgotten'

beh Re:Unworkable (153 comments)

I think it's not so much about me just being able to go to google and say, remove all my results from searches.
I think it IS more about me being able to remove specific things from the search results, if they are "about me". This is probably where it gets difficult - how would I go about and prove that some thing I would like to remove from the search is genuinely about ME, not about someone else who shares my name (and might not mind).

Also, note, it's only to remove it from the search - obviously, google can't remove the target page linked, and that's not what the guy had asked for, either. What was asked, was that this information should not simply be turned up when googling his name, as this issue in the past still threatens his livelyhood today, if people don't want to do business with him _NOW_ based on him having struggled financially _years ago_. Note: The page was accurate (and still IS accurate) in the sense that his house WAS being repossessed back then. But that does not make the page an "accurate" representation of his financial situation _now_. If he now has trouble finding jobs (I believe a news interview said he is a freelance worker), because people see an OLD article mentioning his financial issues, then that old information bubbling up will cause him actual financial / reputational harm now and in the future.

The whole thing is _very_ difficult, and we would do better to try and see how it could best be implemented, it won't be easy. But we WILL need to see that there are people genuinely suffering from the consequences if we don't. Do you want to get bitten sometime in the future by some mishap / stupidity / risk you took earlier in your life - long in your past - simply because it still turns up under a search for your name? (This needn't even be something illegal, or financial issue - it could simply be some embarrassing stunt you pulled as a drunk teenager; but google won't let you forget -- do you want your personal career in the future never to take off, because of something stupid you said years or even decades before?)

A lot of information about you as a person may be relevant, if it is CURRENT - it's useless, if not even destructive, if outdated, but still turns up.

Here's a simple thing - 14 years ago, I held a position labelled "architecture support" (I was a developer, but also supporting the company's IT architects trying to come up with good ways of building a new system, all the while maintaining connectivity to the legacy systems): That was 14 years ago - the role is still relevant for what I do today - but you won't believe how many idiots still send inquiries, on whether I might be available for general IT help-desk or support work, after finding my CV "using a sophisticated, targetted search". Should I start lying on my CV, just to get around it? (particularly bad, since a written reference from the post also clearly labels the position as "architecture support")?

Note - this case is harmless - it's purely annoying - it's nothing like the other guy's repossession issue turning up in google, if potential future bosses do a quick "screening" - who will then turn him down, after his "sophisticated screening process" turned up a "red flag" (financial issues) without being able to discern whether they have ANY current relevance.

about 4 months ago
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Illinois Law Grounds PETA Drones Meant To Harass Hunters

beh Land of the Free! (370 comments)

Strange - people fishing should be "free" to fish unmonitored... ...people hunting should be "free" to hunt unmonitored... ...people on the Internet should be "free" to be monitored at will...

To me that sounds like future terrorist plots could best be discussed on a hunting trip, because you have the gun lobby ensuring that you'll be undisturbed...

about 7 months ago
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Houston Expands Downtown Surveillance, Unsure If It Helps

beh Well... (60 comments)

'Officials say data is not kept to determine if the cameras are driving down crime.'

It seems to me, that if there _WERE_ concrete evidence of crime being reduced, they _WOULD_ keep data.

If the cities would collect data, that does NOT show a drop in crime, then city officials might be criticized for the whole operation... ...without the data - it's hard to nail them down on it...

about 8 months ago

Submissions

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beh beh writes  |  more than 7 years ago

beh (4759) writes "Yesterday, at 2:30pm GMT someone started ssh scanning my servers — thanks to fail2ban, there's not much chance of anything happening there, but nevertheless, when I finally saw all the fail2ban messages about it 2 1/2 hours later, I reported the issue to theplanet.com, the provider from which the attack originated.

At first, there was no response apart from 'This is an auto-response'. A further 12 hours later, finally an answer "we will investigate", in the meantime, the attack continues.

By now, it has been 23 hours since the attack started, and over 20 since I reported it to the ISP; no further reaction, the ssh scans continue to come in from 70.87.55,194; and since the attack goes again all IP addresses of both of my servers, I can only assume it will go against the entire subnet of those servers (especially since a third server belonging to the same domain, with another ISP is not the target).

I've just had a quick online chat with their support desk, and all they tell me is "I can't do anything about it; my hands are tied. Mail the abuse desk again, but please note, the investigation and actions from it can take between 24 and 72hours.".

My question now is this — when does an ISP become an accomplice to an attacker, by willingly leaving him to continue to attack other systems, even though the provider knows full well about what's going on?

Where are the rights of those people that are on the receiving end of those attacks — I can hardly 'take my business elsewhere', since I'm not a customer of theplanet.com... For the moment, I'm 'happy' with the attacks to continue, as the attacker seems to be using dictionary based attacks and hasn't hit on any accounts that could be vulnerable; but obviously, I can't say how safe other systems on the same subnets, or on other subnets that are being attacked might be. Leaving this unchallenged for 24-72 hours seems a sure-fire way to exacerbate the problem, as any additional host someone might be able to break into, will only make future attacks worse.

So, what can/should be done?"

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