Archive for the ‘Society’ Category

Walking Back The Cat

2017/04/24

(FTB stderr) – Marcus Ranum:

The origin of the expression “walking back the cat” is lost in the early cold war, but it refers to the process of decompiling and recompiling intelligence after a breach, usually caused by a mole.

I’m quite sure that nowadays it’s got a lot to do with computer forensics; it’s probably a tremendous amount of fun for anyone who hasn’t got a stake in the outcome. For anyone who does, historically, it’s a slice of hell. …

stderr 2017/04/23 walking-back-the-cat

To Protect Your Entire Country

2017/04/15

(FTB stderr) – Marcus Ranum:

This is certainly unexpected: FBI Director James B. Comey emailed me.

Federal Bureau Of Investigation.
935 Pennsylvania Avenue NW,
Washington, D.C. 20535 USA.

Attention: Dear Sir/Madam, …

stderr 2017/04/13 i-get-letters

Spam

Phoned-Home Info Revealed by Microsoft

2017/04/09

(The Register) – Iain Thomson:

Put down your coffee and admire the sheer amount of data Windows 10 Creators Update will slurp from your PC. …

theregister 2017/04/06 creators_update

Big Brother Microsoft Windows

Reforming Government First Requires Understanding It

2017/03/30

(Atlantic Politics) – Elaine Kamarck:

Jared Kushner’s new initiative promises to tap the expertise of the business community – but government isn’t a business. …

theatlantic 2017/03 521004

Bill Clinton and Al Gore examine stacks of paperwork at a National Performance Review event in 1993

Strong Encryption Makes us all Safer

2017/03/28

(Guardian Comments) – Editorial:

There are many things the web giants could do to help combat terrorism, but weakening privacy protection is not one of them. …

theguardian 2017/mar/27 strong-encryption

Peace in America

2017/03/21

(Indian Country Media Network) – Gyasi Ross:

The story of the Great Laws is the story of the Great Peacemaker, who travels among the people and “combs their hair.” In other words, he speaks to them and works on untangling old traumas that stand in the way of peace. …

indiancountrymedianetwork peace-in-america

Deganawida

It’s Worse Than You Think

2017/03/13

(FTB stderr) – Marcus Ranum:

I’m usually surprised by the coverage regarding NSA/CIA/FBI spying: there’s some stuff we definitely should be scared of, and there’s other stuff that I file under “so, what?”

For example, the fact that the US government has consistently ignored its own laws regarding wiretapping: nobody who has observed any government in action should be surprised by that.

For example, Herbert Yardley published “The American Black Chamber” in 1931, documenting a slightly fictionalized version of his exploits monitoring communications during WWI, before, and after. …

stderr 2017/03/11 worse-than-you-think

Herbert Yardley: The American Black Chamber

Religious Discrimination

2017/03/12

(Atlantic Politics) – Emma Green:

Pollsters at the Public Religion Research Institute have asked Americans about their impressions of discrimination in the United States. Two religious groups were included on the list of those who might face bias: Christians and Muslims. Depending on who was answering, the responses were wildly different. …

theatlantic 2017/03 519135

Vigil for victims of Pulse nightclub shooting

Conspiracy Size

2017/03/09

(FTB stderr) – Marcus Ranum:

I suspect that there is an optimal and a peak conspiracy size, beyond which it becomes nearly impossible to keep a secret.

That’s one of the reasons why I tend to disbelieve conspiracy theories that involve a lot of moving parts. I completely suck at math but if I recall how this is calculated, you take the probability that any individual will leak, and then the probability your secret remains secret is the combined probability that all the individuals don’t leak. The way I think of it (because I suck at math) is that you make a saving throw on your Leak Table every year and sooner or later you’re going to come up ’01’. …

stderr 2017/03/07 conspiracy

WikiLeaks CIA Revelations

2017/03/09

(FTB) – Mano Singham:

WikiLeaks has issued a blockbuster press release along with a tranche of documents that were leaked to it that describe the CIA’s efforts to infiltrate people’s communications systems. The documents reveal that the CIA targeted smartphones and computers and turned so-called Smart TVs into eavesdropping devices. The documents allege that the CIA then lost control of this spying arsenal which means that others may now possess these same capabilities, which would constitute a massive breach in its security systems. …

singham 2017/03/07 vault-7

WikiLeaks over CIA Information Operations Center logos