COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY

Apr 23 10:27

The FBI as an ethical hacker?

The FBI depends on exploiting software bugs to install CIPAV. I would like my software vendors to fix bugs that would let in spyware even if it makes life hard for the FBI. I hope that the software vendors are not leaving bugs unfixed or purposeful back doors just to help the FBI, because sooner or later the bad guys will find them and exploit them -- maybe even against the FBI.

Also I'd like my antispyware software to find and report on all spyware, but there have been reports that some antispyware companies have agreed to ignore the FBI tool. This provides a great opportunity for spyware developers to create software that looks enough like the FBI program so that the antispyware software will ignore it as well.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Anyone here who trusts the FBI to confine its activities to fighting crime needs to go back to yesterday's stories about FBI agents using their little taxpayer-funded toys to watch teenage girls getting naked in dressing rooms.

Apr 22 17:39

Norton Anti-Virus Fails The Test - Beat by Free Software!

What’s wrong with this picture? When a consumer purchases top of the line Anti-virus software, they expect to solve their virus problems. Norton’s excuse that the viruses prevented their program from operating properly doesn’t hold water when downloading a free program solves all of the issues. Is Norton admitting they can’t even compete with a free program and their software is so fragile that run of the mill Trojan horses render it ineffective when free programs operate seamlessly? In short, Norton wouldn’t do the job unless we paid them more money - and in my opinion, that’s gouging, especially when said issues are cured by free software.

Apr 22 17:20

You're Participating In The Facebook Terms Of Service Vote, Right?

Facebook may have set the threshhold too high at 30% of global users considering the original pushback came from the U.S. audience, but 300,000 is an embarrassingly low number for something so many people seemed to be so upset about. Our prediction: the vote will be declared invalid due to underparticipation, and Facebook will be able to say "Well, we tried, and nobodyreally cared," and go back to the legalese practically every other site uses. And if less than half a million out of 200 million registered users bother to vote, then they may have a point.

Apr 21 14:30

Layoff Daily Owner is laying himself off.

It's not expensive to keep up site, but it just takes too much time.

Apr 21 09:58

Report: Hackers break into Pentagon's fighter jet project

The reported attack raised more questions than it answered.

For example, the report did not say how attackers managed to download terabytes of data before being discovered. A single terabyte can take up to several weeks to download over a relatively fast data connection, such as a Digital Subscriber Line or cable modem.

The report also suggested that China could be behind the stolen data, noting that investigators believe the attack originated in China. However, it said the exact identities of the people behind the attack had not been established.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

... who could be anywhere in the world.

Apr 21 09:42

Obama Campaign's Multi-Million Dollar Propaganda Firm Deployed in Iraq to Advise on "New Media"

With Iraq in ruins, Obama sends a politically connected firm, along with reps from AT&T, Google, and Twitter to build 'smart power' in Baghdad.

Apr 20 22:10

FoxNews.com Serving Up Infected Ads?

Users in our security forum have discovered that advertisements delivered via the FoxNews.com website have been using popup malware to force-deliver artificial anti-virus malware onto the PCs of unsuspecting visitors (of which Fox has countless millions). One of our more skilled scambusters and "malvertising" gurus has further dissected (with photos) the exact scumware delivery mechanism at work here -- and notes that users don't even need to click on an ad banner at the website in order to get infected. The vsm_free_setup.exe forced download the ads are instituting originates from Russia or the Ukraine, and appears to involve a keylogger.

Apr 20 13:58

Instead of Bailing Out Mainstream Newspapers, How About Bailing Out Real Journalists?

Congress is again making noises about bailing out the newspaper industry.

But the mainstream papers - other than a select few, such as McClatchy - were largely cheerleaders for the Iraq war, and covered up (or - as in the case of the New York Times - delayed for a year so the story would not effect elections) crimes like illegal spying on Americans.

Instead of bailing out lapdogs for the government and mouthpieces for the wealthy, how about giving seed money to alternative journalists who actually report the news without pulling punches?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I could use s few bucks! :)

Apr 20 13:01

Nano Tattoos

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has been working on what they are calling “nano skins,” a composite of nanotubes and polymers. Their invention is flexible and thin enough to fit underneath the skin, without losing the ability to conduct electricity. That’s a lot of work for something so incredibly small. With these attributes, the potential real world applications of the technology are simply awesome.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

... like renting your forehead out as advertising space?

:)

Apr 20 11:41

Big Bro’s Cybersecurity Act: A means to shut down the Internet

The net-net of all this is to create a net to bag the Internet, right now the only alternative media this country has. I forget who said, “in the process of protecting liberty, do not further steps to destroy it.” You get the drift. You’re netting out, if this bill goes through, with all news being carried by the not so trustworthy so-called MSM corporate networks; radio and print controlled by profit-making newswires and television by the Towers of Babel, the likes of General Electric.

Apr 20 10:31

S Korea blogger found not guilty

ark Dae-sung, better known as Minerva, built up a huge online following by making largely negative - and accurate - predictions on the economy.

Apr 20 09:45

Pirate Bay 'could soon be obsolete'

Politics aside, future victories for copyright holders are looking increasingly shaky as Bitorrent tracking sites such as The Pirate Bay are about to be replaced by applications such as the Tribler. Where the current crop of bittorrent filesharing applications need to be pointed at torrent tracking sites such as The Pirate Bay to find files, Tribler's searches are done over the networks of fellow bittorrent users, sidestepping centralised torrent tracking sites altogether.

Apr 20 09:39

Using A Proxy Server Will Lead To Harsher Sentences

Some analysts believe this legislation is an effort to stop leaked US Government information from reaching outside sources, such as Wikileaks. The legislation will be voted on by the United States Sentencing Commission on April 15, and is set to take effect on November 1st. The EFF has already urged the Commission to reject the amendment.

Apr 20 05:26

American militancy rising - Are would-be revolutionaries again choosing symbols of societal excess with which to marshall revolutionary fervor?

Portland Independent Media Center - April 19. Early morning, after the workers went home. Five windows smashed with rocks at McDonald's on Ocean St. An act of insurrection against work, capital, and the colonization of daily life.

From Alaska to Argentina, warriors unite! Don't wait for 2010, riot now!
Attack and destroy slavery and colonization everywhere!

[What's going on here? This seemingly innocuous bit of hooliganism is being portrayed and even encouraged in this Internet article as a new revolutionary zeal. Is there enough angry sentiment for this sort of protest to catch on? Stay tuned -is likely the best bet for what is possible in the coming months. Summer looks to be long and hot all across this vastly impoverished new America.]

Apr 19 21:48

17-Year-Old Behind Recent Twitter Worm Offered Job After Claiming Responsibility

For the social networking darling Twitter, it was a headache and potential threat. But for the young man behind the computer worm that attacked the micro-blogging site this week, it was a fast track to a job.

Called both "Mikeyy" and "StalkDaily," the pesky computer program crashed the tweet-fest for the first time over the weekend, leaving thousands of unwanted messages in its wake.

Infected accounts not only displayed posts left by Twitter users and their followers, but messages directing users to StalkDaily.com and saying things such as "Mikeyy I am done…," "Twitter please fix this" and "Twitter hire Mikeyy."

Apr 19 19:43

A Warning About Spyware On Rightwing Blogs

Today I clicked over from memeorandum to the hardline rightwing blog Stop The ACLU, to see what the bloggers there had to say about an issue. Immediately, my Avast! anti-virus software and Spybot S&D software warned me that a Win-32 Trojan virus had been uploaded and was trying to re-write my registry files so it could snuggle in closer.

Apr 19 19:21

The Real Pirate Bay

Set up a torrent tracker, get fined, go to jail.

Join a bank, destroy the economy, profit.

Apr 19 17:37

Saying the IPO money TOTALLY ran out months ago, Yahoo plans to eliminate up to 600 jobs

The San Francisco Chronicle Verne Kopytoff -In an effort to jump-start its business, Yahoo Inc. is planning to cut up to 600 jobs, a person familiar with the matter said.

Apr 19 12:58

The Truth about Facebook!

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is not to say that social networking sites are not useful and fun, but use some common sense about what you share. Computer nets are NOT private. Imagine that whatever you post to a social network site is the same as gluing it to the front of your house where people on the street can see it.

Apr 19 11:55

Labour general secretary denies plan to set up website to spread Tory smears

Apr 18 09:13

Facebook vote a 'massive con trick' says privacy advocate

Facebook has deliberately changed the rules around its much-hyped "user vote" to ensure that it won't have to follow decisions made.

The company originally said that if 25 per cent of users voted in favour of a change in its terms and conditions it would consider that binding. But that percentage has now gone up to 30 per cent.

Simon Davies of lobby group Privacy International said: "the idea of establishing a thirty percent participation threshold is a complete joke. It will never be reached, and Facebook knows it. Earlier this year the figure had been set at 25 percent, and it was edged up because of concerns that users might actually succeed in changing the terms and conditions”.

Apr 17 18:58

Tapping your cell phone

13 Investigates explains how your cell phone can be secretly hijacked and used against you - and how to protect yourself.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As I understand it, the crooks have to get their hands on the actual phones to install the spyware.

That being said, we can assume that the US Government has their spyware installed right at the factory, so at night I leave my cell phone sitting on a radio tuned to a bible-banger station. :)

Apr 17 13:40

Pirate Bay four jailed for breaking copyright in Swedish file-sharing trial

Defence lawyers had argued the men should be acquitted because The Pirate Bay does not host any copyright-protected material. Instead, it provides a forum for its users to download content through so-called torrent files. The technology allows users to transfer parts of a large file from several different users, increasing download speeds.

But the court found the defendants guilty of helping users commit copyright violations "by providing a website with ... sophisticated search functions, simple download and storage capabilities, and through the tracker linked to the website".

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The fundamental problem behind content theft isn't the technology. And as a result technology will never succeed in stopping content theft.

The fundamental problem behind content theft is that it is impossible to convince people that making a copy of a file is any kind of a crime when they see the leaders of this country stealing from the rest of the world, torturing people, lying to start wars, and getting away with it.

When we hold our leaders to the law, the people will follow.

And not before.

Apr 17 11:38

Police think killer stalks women via Craigslist

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Bad, bad, Craiglist! Bad, bad, very bad, double-plus UNgood Internet!" -- ABCNNBBCBS

Apr 17 10:15

iBotnet: Researchers find signs of zombie Macs

Malware hunters at Symantec have discovered a direct link between a malicious file embedded in pirated copies of Apple’s iWork 09 software and what appears to be the first Mac OS X botnet launching denial-of-service attacks.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Waiting for an iPology from all those sneering MAC owners.

Apr 17 10:02

Video Bloggers Fear “You” Being Phased Out Of YouTube

A new You Tube video getting a lot of attention highlights concerns that the “You” is being phased out of YouTube, as individual users are sidelined by regulation and censorship in favor of corporate domination of the popular video website, an eventuality that we first warned about years ago.

The clip makes the case that You Tube has all but eliminated the prominence of individual video channels and artificially suppressed their chances of topping the popular ranking charts.

Apr 16 12:25

Woman killed by laptop

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Goddamned VISTA!!!!! :)

Seriously, I wonder why they are going on about the laptop when it was the Tow Truck that is the obvious cause here.

Apr 16 10:17

Officials Say U.S. Wiretaps Exceeded Law

The National Security Agency intercepted private e-mail messages and phone calls of Americans in recent months on a scale that went beyond the broad legal limits established by Congress last year, government officials said in recent interviews.

Several intelligence officials, as well as lawyers briefed about the matter, said the N.S.A. had been engaged in “overcollection” of domestic communications of Americans. They described the practice as significant and systemic, although one official said it was believed to have been unintentional.

Apr 15 18:05

Win 7: Looks to be Vista disaster, Take 2

InformationWeek has been given a first-look at data collected by KACE from over 1100 sources regarding corporate uptake of Windows 7 after it's released later this year. According to their stats, 83% of businesses will not be upgrading to Windows 7 until at least 2011, making the Windows 7 launch quite possibly a Vista Take 2 under additional declines in OS market share.

The failure of corporations to migrate to Windows 7 raises additional concerns over Microsoft's slipping OS market share as Vista sales have declined 8% in the most recent quarter, and Linux is reaping the benefits.

Apr 15 17:49

US mulls stiffer sentences for common Net proxies

A key vote Wednesday on new federal sentencing guidelines would classify the use of proxies as evidence of "sophistication," increasing sentences by about 25 percent - which could mean years or even decades longer behind bars, depending on the crime. It's akin to judges handing down stiffer sentences when a gun is used in a robbery.

Yet digital-rights advocates are worried. Although they aren't absolving criminals, they complain that the proposal is so broad, it could lead to unnecessarily harsh sentences for tech neophytes who didn't know they were using proxies in the first place or who were simply engaging in a practice often encouraged as a safer way of using the Internet.

Apr 15 16:33

FREENET

http://freenetproject.org/whatis.html

Freenet is free software which lets you publish and obtain information on the Internet without fear of censorship. To achieve this freedom, the network is entirely decentralized and publishers and consumers of information are anonymous. Without anonymity there can never be true freedom of speech, and without decentralization the network will be vulnerable to attack.

Communications by Freenet nodes are encrypted and are "routed-through" other nodes to make it extremely difficult to determine who is requesting the information and what its content is.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

A different way to send info over the internet.

n/a
Apr 14 21:03

Britain in the dock over secret tracking of internet accounts

Fears that Britain was slipping into a surveillance society were heightened yesterday as Brussels initiated legal action after declaring that UK laws guaranteeing data protection were “structurally flawed” and well below the European standard.

The criticism arose after the European Commission investigated the use of “behavioural advertising technology” by British internet service providers, which it found was illegal under European — but not British — law.

Apr 14 14:33

YouTube deep in dog doo

YouTube is about to go down the gurgler according to Benjamin Wayne the CEO of Fliqz.

Apr 14 09:51

Don't be fooled by the power of the blog

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The blogs scoop the corporate media, and now corporate media tries to ride the blogs' coat tails!

Apr 13 21:34

FIDONET

FidoNet consists of approximately 10,000 systems world-wide which comprise a network which exchanges mail and files via Modems using a proprietary protocol. They are connected for the purposes of exchanging E-Mail to the Internet thru a series of gateway systems which interact with the Internet via UUCP with cooperating UNIX-based smart-hosts which act as their MX-receivers.

With some exceptions, you cannot Telnet or FTP to a FidoNet site, only communicate via E-Mail and Usenet News.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is the alternative to the internet discussed on today's radio shows.

Apr 13 21:11

They've got your number

Every call made, email sent and website visited is now being logged under new regulations. What does that mean for investigative journalists - and their need to protect sources?

Apr 13 19:45

Goldman Sachs Gets Heavy-Handed with Smalltime Critical Blogger

Needless to say, we will most likely fight this one in court with Goldman Sachs and now we will expedite adding relevant content to this website. We have followed all of the legal requirements to own and maintain the website under the address we have selected. If you have any media contact you want to forward this to, be my guest. It's just another example of how a bully like Goldman Sachs tries to throw their weight around and this is a clear violation of our Constitutional Rights.

Apr 13 16:42

Federal Authority Over the Internet? The Cybersecurity Act of 2009

One proposed provision gives the President unfettered authority to shut down Internet traffic in an emergency and disconnect critical infrastructure systems on national security grounds goes too far. Certainly there are times when a network owner must block harmful traffic, but the bill gives no guidance on when or how the President could responsibly pull the kill switch on privately-owned and operated networks.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Time to start setting up those FIDOnet nodes, folks.

Apr 13 11:38

Blogwatch

So-called citizen journalists bagged another trophy last week when THE SCIENTIFIC ACTIVIST discovered that NASA public-affairs aide George Deutsch--accused of trying to muzzle agency scientists on the issue of global warming--had never graduated from Texas A&M University

Apr 13 10:51

Computer with SAS secrets is missing

A source said it held sensitive information on the regiment's counter-terrorism manoeuvres.

Apr 13 10:35

German Regulators Fine Microsoft For Price-Fixing

Antitrust regulators fined Microsoft Corp.'s German subsidiary 9 million euros ($11.8 million) and said the world's largest software maker illegally influenced retail prices for its Office 2007 programs.

The Bundeskartellamt, Germany's economic regulatory body, said in a statement that an undisclosed retailer worked with Microsoft to set the price of Microsoft's Office Home and Student 2007 software packages before the companies jointly launched an ad campaign.

Apr 13 05:50

Should Online Scofflaws Be Denied Web Access?

The New York Times - Eric Pfanner - PARIS — Is Internet access a fundamental human right? Or is it a privilege, carrying with it a responsibility for good behavior?

“If you put 200 VCRs in your garage and start making and selling copies of films, you will get a visit from the police,” he said. “If you do it from a Web site, everybody says, ‘Hey, freedom of information’ ”.

Apr 12 17:53

The Rise and Rise of the Political Blogger

Despite the fringe nature of the blogosphere, though, politicians and media analysts are convinced the unregulated sector is a force to be reckoned with in 21st century Britain. "There's no doubt that the rise of the blogosphere is one of the major political developments of the last 10 years," said McNair.

Apr 12 11:28

McBride Spinning for His Career

Apr 11 23:27

Best Buy Sells 9-Year-Old Discontinued Hard Drive As Brand New Western Digital, Refuses Refund

Jon spent $250 on a Western Digital VelociRaptor but what he received from Best Buy was a Quantum Fireball, a discontinued hard drive that hasn't been sold for nine years. Best Buy, of course, took no responsibility for the odd swap, and said that Western Digital must have accidentally sold a competitor's discontinued drive. Western Digital, of course, said that a Best Buy employee stole Jon's hard drive.

Apr 11 19:23

University computers struck by computer virus

A malicious computer virus called Conficker has embedded itself in computers at the University of Utah.

Apr 11 10:56

Conficker also installs fake antivirus software

Researchers have discovered another feature of the Conficker worm that provides an additional clue about the intent of the creators--the worm installs malware that masquerades as antivirus software, Trend Micro said on Friday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Waterboard the hackers' computers!!!!!!

Apr 11 10:45

Germany muzzles WikiLeaks

On April 9th 2009, the internet domain registration for the investigative journalism site Wikileaks.de was suspended without notice by Germany's registration authority DENIC.

The action comes two weeks after the house of the German WikiLeaks domain sponsor, Theodor Reppe, was searched by German authorities. Police documentation shows that the March 24, 2009 raid was triggered by WikiLeaks' publication of Australia's proposed secret internet censorship list. The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) told Australian journalists that they did not request the intervention of the German government.

Apr 11 10:34

Facebook Warns Ex-Employees Not To Talk To Moviemakers

Former Facebook employees tell us the company sent out letters warning them not to talk to "West Wing" creator Aaron Sorkin, who -- his publicist tells us -- is still working on a movie about the social network's founding.

Apr 11 10:02

Blogger Gears Up for Legal Battle Over Goldman Sachs Critique

A major Wall Street investment bank has apparently retained a well-known New York City-based law firm in an effort to curtail a blogger's critical posts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

We used to live in a country where such an absurd lawsuit would not stand a chance of winning, but these days who knows? In any event, Goldman Sachs may simply try to drown Mike Morgan in legal fees in a courtroom war of attrition.

Apr 11 09:48

Goldman Sachs hires law firm to shut blogger's site

Goldman Sachs is attempting to shut down a dissident blogger who is extremely critical of the investment bank, its board members and its practices.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Can you imagine Goldman Sachs trying to shut down a TV station or a newspaper?

This is exactly the same thing!

Apr 10 21:25

Google Street View: Residents block street to prevent filming over crime fears

Residents of an affluent village formed a human chain to prevent Google from taking pictures of their homes amid fears the images could be used by burglars.

Apr 10 15:32

European internet consumption to overtake TV in 14 months

The internet will overtake broadcast TV as Europe's most consumed form of media for the first time in June 2010 if current growth trends continue, according to Microsoft research.

Apr 10 13:22

Dept. of Homeland Security employee “Steve Bierfeldt should go to jail”

Today a commenter left the following message under the story about Campaign for Liberty’s Steve Bierfeldt audio taped interrogation by St. Louis TSA, local police and FBI.

“You all need to listen better! That was the police asking the questions and NOT TSA.

People that carry large amounts of money throws up a red flag to fund terrorists groups or drugs.

There is no reason for this moron to be carring that much CASH with him. Get a Money order or something! He should go to jail for being dumb!

Let the TSA ask questions to make you idiots feel safe! I would rather have them ask questions than not.”

J.D.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

My reply to TSA is that on the tape the interrogator can clearly be heard warning that he is about to call the police. Therefore, the interrogator is not the police, but TSA.

Second, IT IS NONE OF TSA'S @#$%ING BUSINESS HOW MUCH CASH WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES CHOOSE TO CARRY AND WHY. How DARE you to presume to tell us what we should or should not do. That is not your job. Your job is to find bombs, and according to DHS' own tests you fail at that 50% of the time. Your job is to find terrorists, not terrorize the people when no real threats can be found anywhere.

Until you learn how to actually do the job you are supposed to do (and learn now to inspect a laptop without destroying it) stop covering up for your feelings of inadequacy with arrogance and remember who the hell it is pays your salaries.

TSA is the major reason tourism in Hawaii (and the United States) is in decline. Nobody goers to vacation in a place where they are treated like POWs getting in and out. TSA is the reason Hawaii's economy is in "Al Qaeda" and a little more contrition is required instead of a rant posted WHILE WORKING ON THE TAXPAYER'S TIME!!!!

TSA are thugs. The audio tape proves it. This attempt to blame the victim because he doesn't carry money the way you might chose to proves it. If you do not want the image of being thugs STOP ACTING LIKE IT.

And one more thing; if you don't stop fondling my wife like that, you are going to lose some teeth, pervert!!

Apr 10 12:52

Parts Of Silicon Valley Loses Internet, Phone Service After Vandals Cut AT&T Underground Cables

Parts of northern California, including Silicon Valley, lost Internet and telephone connections on Thursday after vandals severed AT&T underground fiber-optic cables in San Jose and San Carlos.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Hmmmm. If the cables were copper, we could attribute the cutting to thieves (copper theft is a huge problem here in Hawaii), but cutting fiber cables?

That sounds like a test run for a false-flag terror attack.

Apr 10 11:07

Conficker Worm Arms Itself To Steal And Spam

The Conficker/Downadup worm is on the move again. After a relatively uneventful April 1, on which the worm began widening the number of Web sites that it scanned for instructions, a new Conficker variant has emerged and appears to be preparing to spam and steal information.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

See also: PC Conficker test

Apr 10 00:42

Internet Rankings are Massively Gamed

I'm not trying to pick on these 2 companies. In fact, there are more than 29,000 websites devoted to "auto surfing" programs which will increase your Alexa ranking.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

For the record, WRH does not "game" our readership numbers. You are all real human beings!

Apr 09 11:17

Conficker begins stealthy update

The Conficker worm has started to update infected machines with a mystery package of data.

Computer security firms watching the malicious program noticed that it sprang into life late on 8 April.

The activity on its update system delivered encrypted software to compromised machines. It is not yet clear what the payload contains.

See also: PC Conficker test

Apr 08 22:03

XP downgrades after Windows 7 ships? Business as usual

Microsoft has announced this week that it will continue to offer downgrade options to both volume licensing customers and end-users when Windows 7 ships. Customers who purchase a system from a qualifying OEM with a version of Windows 7 that they don't want will be able to fall back to equivalent versions of Vista or XP. This latest extension to XP's availability has, inevitably, made the headlines, as if Microsoft's decision to allow users to fall back to the venerable system is a judgment of Windows 7 before it even ships.

Apr 08 17:30

MUCKETY

Map relationships among people and organizations:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mentioned on today's GCN radio show.

Apr 08 10:49

Cyberspies Penetrate Electrical Grid

The spies came from China, Russia and other countries, and were believed to be on a mission to navigate the U.S. electrical system and its controls, the newspaper said, citing current and former U.S. national security officials.

The intruders have not sought to damage the power grid or other key infrastructure but officials said they could try during a crisis or war, the paper said in a report on its website.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Befor ethe next war, or the next false flag, the US Government (and Israel) have to figure out a way to shut down the non-commercial portions of the internet and they must have an excuse that the public will buy.

A nationwide blackout caused by the cyberspies of [insert name of target country here] provides an event with immediacy, and justification to start pulling wires on the blogs.

Apr 07 20:05

The Meter Is Running

Time Warner justifies its new pricing model by directing blame at its heaviest users, claiming that a few terabyte-hogging party poopers with an unquenchable thirst for LOLCat clips have slowed down the network for the rest of us. Tiered billing would speed up the network, says Time Warner, by forcing these heavy users to cut back, or at least pay a premium that the company claims it would re-invest in network upgrades.

But by painting upgrades as so expensive and Herculean a task that the only way to manage them is through steep caps and punitive fees, it's obvious Time Warner is counting on consumer ignorance.

Apr 07 11:45

Ghostnet Toolset—Back Door at the Click of a Button

While we may not have a smoking gun showing this botnet as the work of any government organization, it is very clear that the groups behind the tools are organized and making it very easy for individuals to participate in these attacks.

Apr 07 11:36

Google is just an amoral menace

Despite the aura of heroic young enterprise that still miraculously attaches to the web, what we are seeing is a much older and toxic capitalist model - the classic monopoly that destroys industries and individual enterprise in its bid for ever greater profits. Despite its diversification, Google is in the final analysis a parasite that creates nothing, merely offering little aggregation, lists and the ordering of information generated by people who have invested their capital, skill and time. On the back of the labour of others it makes vast advertising revenues - in the final quarter of last year its revenues were $5.7bn, and it currently sits on a cash pile of $8.6bn.

Apr 07 11:07

The moment Google car filmed itself being pulled over by police for driving in bus lane

These are the pictures Google didn't want you to see - a controversial Street View car getting pulled over by police for driving in a bus lane.

Apr 07 11:02

Home Office slip points to Japanese porn site

The Home Office has been forced to amend its website after a user was directed to a Japanese pornographic site by mistake.

Apr 06 20:25

Microsoft Confirms Windows 7-To-XP Downgrades

Microsoft (NSDQ:MSFT) on Monday confirmed that PC makers will offer customers that buy Windows 7 PCs the ability to continue using Windows XP through downgrade rights, in what amounts to another major nail in the coffin for Windows Vista.

"We will offer downgrade rights from Windows 7 to Windows XP in the same way we did with Windows Vista," a Microsoft spokesperson told Channelweb.com.

What does this say about Microsoft's confidence in Windows 7?

Apr 06 18:31

Conficker Eye Chart provides a cute visual check for infection

The Conficker Working Group has produced a quick way to check if your Windows PC has a Conficker infection: the Conficker Eye Chart. If you're one of the 99% or so that don't have it, you'll see the image above. If some of the images are missing, then you may have it.

The test is based on Conficker blocking access to some anti-virus sites. It should be accurate, unless you're using a proxy server.

Apr 06 18:25

UK email retention law comes into force

New European Union legislation comes into force today requiring ISPs to store the details of every email sent and web site visited by their users, in case the police, or any other public organisation or body, needs to access the information.

Similar rules covering phone records are already in force. The new directive specifically requests that ISPs retain the communications data, though not the actual content, for a year. The authorities will be able to request access to the data with a warrant.

See also: What does the government know about my internet use?

Apr 06 14:07

Net firms start storing user data

Details of user e-mails and net phone calls will be stored by internet service providers (ISPs) from Monday under an EU directive.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Okay folks, start sending THIS file back and forth all over Europe!

Apr 05 16:01

The Constitution Dies - To Thunderous Applause

Gee, you folks who thought Obama was the be-all and end-all to "solve" violations of The Constitution under President Bush:

A pair of bills introduced in the U.S. Senate would grant the White House sweeping new powers to access private online data, regulate the cybersecurity industry and even shut down Internet traffic during a declared "cyber emergency."

Apr 04 22:37

£15bn for Government snoop network? Just use Facebook

Cambridge University researchers have revealed how the profile information Facebook releases to search engines could be exploited by spammers or even governments.

Public listings allow search engines to crawl a limited version of your Facebook profile, displaying your name, photo, and eight people you're friends with. A limited selection of fan listings and affiliations are also displayed.

In a paper entitled Eight Friends Are Enough the team from Cambridge's Computer Security Group, reveal how they developed a programme capable of sifting through thousands of these public profiles.

This information was then used to map out a person's network of friends. The paper's authors claim this is valuable information that could be easily exploited by spammers and governments.

Apr 04 22:37

£15bn for Government snoop network? Just use Facebook

Cambridge University researchers have revealed how the profile information Facebook releases to search engines could be exploited by spammers or even governments.

Public listings allow search engines to crawl a limited version of your Facebook profile, displaying your name, photo, and eight people you're friends with. A limited selection of fan listings and affiliations are also displayed.

In a paper entitled Eight Friends Are Enough the team from Cambridge's Computer Security Group, reveal how they developed a programme capable of sifting through thousands of these public profiles.

This information was then used to map out a person's network of friends. The paper's authors claim this is valuable information that could be easily exploited by spammers and governments.

Apr 04 22:07

Chrome EULA Reserves the Right To Filter Your Web

Recently, I decided to try out Google Chrome. With my usual mistrust of Google, I decided to carefully read the EULA before installing the software. I paused when I stumbled upon this section: '7.3 Google reserves the right (but shall have no obligation) to pre-screen, review, flag, filter, modify, refuse or remove any or all Content from any Service. For some of the Services, Google may provide tools to filter out explicit sexual content. These tools include the SafeSearch preference settings (see google.com/help/customize.html#safe). In addition, there are commercially available services and software to limit access to material that you may find objectionable.'

Apr 04 11:00

Online Ads Closing In On Newspaper Ads

Apr 04 10:31

They Hate Us for Our Freedom

The "they" I am referring to is our own government. Apparently the Phoenix Police were tired of one Jeff Pataky who maintains and website and a blog that focuses on misfeasance involving Phoenix police. The police served him with a search warrant and took his computer, cable modem, and wireless routeramong other items. Pataky has a network of police sources who informed him that the search was done purposely to quite his criticisms.

Apr 03 16:03

YouTube Absorbed By Corporate Machinery: The Amateur-Video Pioneer Begins Transition to Hollywood Vehicle

YouTube will soon unveil a redesign that clearly separates its premium and long-form programming from the user-posted videos that account for most of its activity. According to two sources familiar with Google's plans for YouTube, the new design will do away with the current navigation scheme — which funnels users into "videos," "channels," and "community" categories. That layout will be replaced with a tabbed navigation with clearly defined sections for professional content, ClickZ reports.

Apr 03 15:39

Unmask Blocked Calls!

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Got someone who calls you in the middle of the night to scream that you are a @#%ing anti-Semite but their number is blocked>

This website fixes that problem.

Apr 03 15:36

New World Order: Still A Conspiracy Theory?

Despite the fact that the term “new world order” was mentioned in connection with the G20 this week hundreds of times by both global leaders and in news reports, it is still regarded as a “conspiracy theory” by that bastion of truthiness, Wikipedia.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I quit reading Wikipedia right after they deleted me!

Apr 03 15:31

Should Obama Control the Internet?

A new bill would give the President emergency authority to halt web traffic and access private data.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Change we can believe in? Hardly! Obama is continuing the same trend towards a police state that Bush did, and this latest attempt to create an "Off" switch on the internet only shows that Obama is the bigg$^&57x...[NO CARRIER]

Apr 03 12:40

Yet Another Copyright Lobbying Group Caught Infringing

These days, it's nearly impossible not to infringe on copyright in one way or another during your regular day -- but it's always amusing when big-time copyright supporters are caught infringing (and it seems to happen quite frequently). The latest is musicFIRST, the lobbying group funded (potentially illegally) by the recording industry, which has been pushing a campaign claiming that radio is piracy and demanding that radio stations pay even more royalties than they already do.

But, of course, when it comes to licensing or paying royalties itself... well, you know... that's a different story.

Apr 03 10:27

Watch out Broughton! Street View fans plan to descend on 'privacy' village for photo fest

The villagers complained Google had no right to take pictures of their homes, calling it an 'invasion of privacy' and an 'invitation for burglars to strike'.

But not only has the village now become the focus of national attention, it has raised the ire of Internet users, who are now campaigning for Street View enthusiasts from across the UK to descend on the village to snap their own perfectly legal photographs.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Inside of ones home should be private.

But outside is, well, outside, with all that that implies!

Apr 03 10:25

'Privacy risk' of new mobiles that give away location and stored details to marketing firms

Millions of us are unwittingly signing away our rights to privacy when we upgrade to flashy new mobile phones, warn campaigners.

The latest handsets are so advanced they can reveal the location of the owner to within a few yards - along with their internet shopping habits, their interests and the names and addresses of their friends.

Although phone providers are not supposed to pass on this 'Big Brother' data without permission, a 'worryingly large number' of people give consent for the information to be sold to marketing companies, campaigners say.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The good news is that my first generation iPhone shows my location as at the Aloha Stadium, actually about 2 miles away from where I am really sitting!

Apr 03 09:55

Phoenix police raid home of blogger whose writing is highly critical of them

Jeff Pataky, who runs Bad Phoenix Cops, said the officers confiscated three computers, routers, modems, hard drives, memory cards and everything necessary to continue blogging.

The 41-year-old software engineer said they also confiscated numerous personal files and documents relating to a pending lawsuit he has against the department alleging harassment - which he says makes it obvious the raid was an act of retaliation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Aim for the badges!

Apr 02 11:48

Budget ‘rider’ would bid ‘Hasta la vista’ to Windows Vista

It could be “Hasta la vista, baby” to state agency purchases of Microsoft’s Windows Vista information technology under a proposed state budget provision.

The “rider” in the proposed two-year, $182.2 billion state budget — expected to be taken up Wednesday by the Texas Senate — would require state agencies to get written approval from the Legislative Budget Board before buying Vista technology related to an operating system, equipment or licenses.

Sen. Juan Hinojosa, D-McAllen, added the provision in committee and said it’s meant to block purchases of the technology, which has been targeted by criticism: “Don’t buy it, because it’s not worth it.”

Apr 01 15:29

White House website hosted in Germany?!?!?

Apr 01 12:30

Youtube have lost the plot - James Randi Educational Foundation account suspended

Apr 01 10:32

Microsoft Offers Better "Truth in Advertising" for Windows XP Dialog Box

Redmond, AP. Microsoft is preparing to release an update to Windows XP offering better "truth in advertising" for one of Windows XP's most important dialogs.

Apr 01 09:54

Senate Legislation Would Federalize Cybersecurity

Addressing what intelligence officials describe as a gaping vulnerability, the legislation also calls for the appointment of a White House cybersecurity "czar" with unprecedented authority to shut down computer networks, including private ones, if a cyberattack is underway, the officials said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: During the next false-flag staged event, the internet will be shut down so that ABCNNBBCBS have an exclusive "preserve" to spew government propaganda.

Apr 01 08:12

Introducing Opera Face Gestures

:)

Mar 31 11:11

IPhone users will be able to make free phone calls from today as Skype becomes available for the first time on the popular Apple gadget.

Mar 31 10:27

Security experts eye worm attack

While no-one in the industry is 100% sure of the aim of Conficker, they are positive the people behind it are more concerned about making money than causing mayhem.

That is a view backed by PC Magazine editor-in-chief Lance Ulanoff.

"People write malware today not because they want to make a public splash. It's old school to want to make computer screens turn red and say Love Bug.

"Today crime syndicates run these things because they are interested in making money and if they are not making money there is no point in it."

A recent report by security firm Finjan claimed that cybercrime is as lucrative a business as drug trafficking.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Remember, Microsoft has a $250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Conficker's author(s).

Mar 31 10:23

IBM files for patent on offshoring jobs

As IBM was firing thousands of American workers last week, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published Big Blue's application to copyright a computerized system that calculates how to offshore jobs while maximizing government tax breaks.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is an April Fool joke, right?

Right?

Right?

Right?

No?!?!?

Crap!

n/a
Mar 30 19:31

Japan homeless living in internet cafes

Residents can order food and even take a shower. If they stay for more than a month, they can even register the café as their address for job hunting and so that they can receive government funds.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Aloha to all of you who read whatreallyhappened.com!

Mar 30 16:42

How to Remove Conficker Virus

Several Win32 conficker removal tools are now available but because the conficker worm also spreads through portable storage devices such as USB drives, disabling your PC’s autorun feature for external media is recommended. Here is how to remove conficker with a conficker remover.

Mar 30 16:19

Conficker: world's greatest April Fool's joke or 'digital Pearl Harbor'?

Much as has been written and blogged about the Conficker worm. At least 12 million computers around the world have already been infected by it since autumn, and Microsoft has announced a $250,000 US reward for information leading to the capture of the Conficker authors. The French military has even grounded some of its fighter planes.

Mar 30 13:47

Leaving computers on overnight = $2.8 billion a year

Admittedly I don't think much about it at all. I leave my laptop running overnight because I know it'll take five minutes or more to get things going in the morning -- not just booting up, but launching the various apps I start the day with, downloading my overnight email, filtering out the spam, and otherwise "getting settled."

But all the power wasted while computers are sitting idle overnight adds up, and one study has finally tried to measure it. The tally: An estimated $2.8 billion wasted on excess energy costs each year in the U.S. alone.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Computers have various "hibernate" functions, but at least on Windows, they usually quit working properly after a while.

However, along with the waste of electricity, leaving your computers on overnight also shortens their lifespan. I know in the age of planned obsolescence where you buy a new computer every 3 to 5 years that might not seem like an issue, but as the economy tightens people will need to keep their computers far longer, and turning them on ONLY when needed will help.

Yes, constant switching off and on should be avoided, but turning everything off when you go to bed is a good idea to prolong the life of your equipment.

As for the long boot up time, I turn the computer on when I get out of bed, then go make coffee. By the time the caffeine kicks in, the system is ready to rock!

Mar 30 13:30

Fusion Center Agents Working Public Forums?

What we're seeing on many forums, attached to radio talk shows, or to local counties that have general forums, allowing national/political input....we're seeing a growing trend of forum infiltration by persons that monitor those forums to quickly debunk, and/or provide disinformation, when the subject matter is about Barack Obama.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Yes, we get a few of those here as well.

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