* Posts by jay margo

7 posts • joined 1 Mar 2008

Snowden leak: Microsoft added Outlook.com backdoor for Feds

jay margo
Black Helicopters

Cloud Schmoud

Anybody think all this confirmation of what we already suspected is going to slow down the rush to the cloud? I see a future for boutique shops that cater to the wisely paranoid by providing on-premises Linux servers, secure ISP service and custom ROM smartphones.

Black helo for obvious reasons.

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FLABBER-JASTED: It's 'jif', NOT '.gif', says man who should know

jay margo
FAIL

Re: Apologies to Izzard

Ah you Brits, you say "toe-mar-to" ...even though it doesn't have a fucking R in it. (and don't you mean "toe-mar-toe"?)

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jay margo
Stop

There's another reason we don't say "jif"

Over here in the Untied States we have a very popular (and very crappy) peanut butter called Jif, which existed long before GIF files ever occurred to Mr Wilhite. If you say "jif file" to me you might as well be saying "peanut butter file".

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Remote access tech nabs smut-fan laptop theft suspect

jay margo
Black Helicopters

I did this last month, didn't get any publicity.

A client's computer, one that I had previously configured with LogMeIn, was stolen last month.

The stupid thief didn't reformat anything, and within a matter of days the machine was showing up on my LogMeIn dashboard. I don't need to know the IP address for this to happen [even though LogMeIn tells me what it is] because LMI connects to the main server whenever it has an internet connection

[@anonymous coward: it doesn't even need to be logged into XP for this, no password at the machine is needed]

But at this point it got even more interesting, because the detective investigating the theft asked me to install Computrace/Lojack for Laptops on it - through my remote connection -- because that gives them more prosecutable information than just the IP addy [screen grabs, chat logs, pics from the camera, etc.]

Then I had to watch the connection for several days before I got a chance because the thief kept turning the machine off when he wasn't using it. A week or so later, they raided the place and recovered not only the computer but other items stolen from my client at the same time.

All you techies should know this: there's a large number of new machines from Dell, HP, Toshiba etc, that have the Lojack app on the motherboard. All you need is the service tag number and they can switch it on. And since it's on the BIOS, reformatting the HD, or even putting in another one, doesn't help.

See here: http://www.absolute.com/products-bios-enabled-computers.asp

I am not hawking Lojack here, because it seems to me this app is a HUGE security problem as it allows virtually invisible monitoring of a machine, you just need someone at Lojack to turn it on. It is a wide open backdoor and now its on many motherboards. I sure don't want it on my machine.

But the client was happy.

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Noel Edmonds defies BBC's jackbooted enforcers

jay margo
Thumb Up

What?

Never mind that there's no IT angle.

I'm from the states and have no knowledge of who Noel Edmonds is, I'm totally bewildered by the concept of TV licenses [heck, we don’t even need licenses for firearms here] and I’m even more confused as to why one of your “presenters” [another thing we don’t have here] would complain about the very thing that pays part of his salary.

But a guy that refers to himself as “auntie” – well that’s enough for me; this story should certainly be in el Reg.

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US Air Force halts plans to establish a Cyber Command

jay margo
Black Helicopters

@ Herby

It IS "being incorporated in the BIOS code."

The recent theft of a client's computer, and its subsequent appearance on my remote support dashboard, lead me to speaking with the police investigator, who asked me to install "Computrace/Lojack for Laptops" through the remote client.

He then tells me that most newer machines from Dell, HP, Toshiba, etc already have “Computrace/Lojack” on the BIOS, and it only takes the service tag number and a simple call from the local sheriff/constable to turn it on. No NSA/MI5 involvement required.

See: http://www.absolute.com/products-bios-enabled-computers.asp

Where's your Linux security now, Moses?

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Software company says it can still resell Microsoft licences

jay margo
Coat

Software licenses have never made legal sense to me.

Marge Simpson got a letter from the school once that said something like: "By reading this letter aloud you agree that you won't hold the school responsible..."

I think of this everytime I "agree" to a license. By opening a sealed envelope I'm entering into a legally binding contract? By clicking something I'm signing something? I'm just the temporary hire consultant, my agreeing to something is binding on the company that has hired me? For years after I'm long gone?

And when a software company sues, years after the installation, for some kind of violation of the agreement, who made the initial agreement? At least with a signature, one could reasonably say that the contract was entered into by a particular responsible person. When the license agreement is executed by opening an envelope or clicking a screen button, how do they know who did that and how [and who] do they sue accordingly?

Mine's the one with the legal papers in the pocket.

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