* Posts by Smooth Newt

137 posts • joined 6 Jul 2009

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Mastercard facial recog-ware will unlock your money using SELFIES

Smooth Newt
Unhappy

Re: Yet another clueless "security" spokes-head.

>Therefore I would say it could currently "thwart obvious attacks" but is not fully secure. But then again what is?

Thwarting obvious attacks is not enough. It needs to thwart attacks by people whose job is credit card fraud.

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Amazon just wrote a TLS crypto library in only 6,000 lines of C code

Smooth Newt
Happy

At 1/10 the size of OpenSSL, it should be easier to spot bugs

Equally importantly there should be far fewer bugs in the first place. Industry average is about 15-50 errors per 1000 lines of delivered code.

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Smart meters set to cost Blighty as much as replacing Trident

Smooth Newt
Happy

Re: PLease write to your MP's asp on this

Dunno. There isn't going to be another election for five years, so I guess their constituents can mostly just piss off for the next four.

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That shot you heard? SSLv3 is now DEAD

Smooth Newt
Thumb Down

Re: Shame on the IETF for publishing such FUD.

>The real problem with SSLv3 is, that what Web Browsers (and so called SSL VPNs) are doing goes beyond the design limits of SSLv3

Cryptographic protocols can't be considered in isolation. They exist for the applications which use them.

To say that SSLv3 is secure and it's the web browsers which are broken because they allow client side scripting is a bit like saying that your feet are the wrong size for your shoes.

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Smooth Newt
Meh

the source of problems like BEAST and POODLE

They should do the same with TLS 1.0.

It is just as vulnerable to BEAST as SSL 3 is.

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Hated Care.data scheme now 'unachievable', howls UK.gov watchdog

Smooth Newt
Unhappy

Care.data is dead. Long live Data.care

They will probably just rename it and start again.

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BT: Let us scrap ordinary phone lines. You've all got great internet, right?

Smooth Newt
Meh

>If BT/Openreach can remove the need for twice the amount of equipment as is really necessary, surely that would make maintaining the network easier to and therefore more reliable?

It depends on which parts of the system are the most unreliable. It isn't usually the electronics that cause the trouble, it's the JCB through the fibre optic cable.

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GCHQ: Security software? We'll soon see about THAT

Smooth Newt
Pint

GCHQ ... described Kaspersky software as an obstruction to its hacking operations

The best marketing that money can't buy.

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Oi, UK.gov, your Verify system looks like a MASS SPY NETWORK

Smooth Newt
Happy

Re: Never attribute to malice what can be explained by incompetence.

I would add a codicil, "except where the mistake grossly benefits the people who made it."

Privacy is like democracy - Governments like to pretend they want us to have it but the opposite is true.

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Facebook SSD failure study pinpoints mid-life burnout rate trough

Smooth Newt
Happy

>Just about every manufactured item exhibits that pattern of failure.

Bathtubs have a "bathtub curve" failure pattern too. Problems with poor installation, shipping or manufacturing at the start; hard water and fatigue related cracking taking their their toll after a few years.

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Stealing secret crypto-keys from PCs using leaked radio emissions

Smooth Newt
Happy

Re: Thus spoketh the bearded man

>Cool. Could you please post a link (or library reference) to the working exploits you have actually produced during all these years? Thanks in advance.

Wim van Eck's 30 year old paper "Electromagnetic Radiation from Video Display Units: An Eavesdropping Risk?" http://cryptome.org/emr.pdf

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JavaScript creator Eich's latest project: KILL JAVASCRIPT

Smooth Newt
Holmes

Re: And so the wheel turns

The wheel is not so much turning as being re-invented.

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FBI says in secret that secret spy Cessnas aren't secret

Smooth Newt
Pint

Re: Works 4 me

Yes, why is it that so many of the people here who claim they have nothing to hide find it necessary to do so anonymously. Maybe they just don't understand irony.

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Wikipedia to go all HTTPS, all the time

Smooth Newt

Re: Playing to the gallery

>The next consideration is what proportion of activity is actually sensitive.

If you only encrypt sensitive activities then that highlights them with a big sign reading "THIS PERSON IS CARRYING OUT A SENSITIVE ACTIVITY HERE". You need to encrypt everything, all the time.

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Brit plods' post-TETRA radio omnishambles comes home to roost

Smooth Newt
Thumb Up

Re: Semaphor Stations or Hill Top Beacons?

As a Doctor Who fan I am looking forward to the return of blue police telephone boxes on street corners.

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Voyager 2 'stopped' last week, and not just for maintenance

Smooth Newt

@Ken Hagen

>extra-terrestrial civilisations will not reckon our resources are particularly valuable

It doesn't make any difference. Don't assume that Jean-Luc Picard will be in charge of the starship that comes visiting - it might be Pol Pot.

In our own history thousands of Indigenous Australians were hunted down and slaughtered simply for someone's amusement, as sport. We can be wiped out for not immediately embracing the great god Thaal, or even just so they can try out their new ray gun.

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Smooth Newt
Mushroom

"What are the chances of anyone ever finding the discs, let alone understanding the instructions to reproduce them?"

Hopefully none whatsoever.

If a civilization has the ability to detect and retrieve a spacecraft from interstellar space (although not apparently to make a record stylus) then we will probably be wiped out. In our own history that's what happened to just about every civilization when a much more technologically advanced one showed up.

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Spaniard sues eBay over right to sell the Sun

Smooth Newt

Re: Oh god

Yes - 1000 light years away puts it a little bit further out than Rigel.

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Smooth Newt

Re: Oh god

What is the penalty for operating a nuclear installation without a proper licence?

And where do I go to sue her for that sunburn I got last week.

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Ed Snowden should be pardoned, thunders Amnesty Int'l

Smooth Newt

Re: @Boltar

>What evidence you have re your statement that 'he put operatives lives at risk'?

Yes - considering the dirt they throw at Snowden, if there was any evidence of that we would have seen plenty of grieving widows and children wheeled out on the news by now.

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Private cloud is NOT dead – and for one good reason: Control of data

Smooth Newt

The first rule of hype is to think of a sexy name

Yes it's just outsourcing your data storage over the Internet.

Sounds a great idea until the company you outsourced it to goes pop, or you find your American/Chinese competitors also have access.

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EU-US safe harbour talks are lingering just outside port, says US

Smooth Newt

Re: "getting judicial redress rights for European citizens equivalent to those enjoyed by Americans"

It seems to me that it is in the US Government's interest to spin these negotiations out as long as possible.

They are perfectly happy with the current arrangement where they can do whatever they like. Without any real prospect of the European Commission switching Safe Harbor off, I expect agreement on a revised Safe Harbor framework will continue to be "just weeks away" for many more years.

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Why did Snowden swipe 900k+ US DoD files? (Or so Uncle Sam claims)

Smooth Newt
FAIL

Re: I know I'm in a minority on here

>He's just a jumped up tech

You don't win arguments by insulting your audience. Most of the people here have significant IT skills - "jumped up techs" to you.

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Home routers co-opted into self-sustaining DDoS botnet

Smooth Newt

Re: Class action?

@ Wim Ton "You need an extra printing station on the assembly line to print it on the case"

It is usually printed on the same sticker as the MAC address and serial number.

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WikiLeaks, er, leaks the Bundestag Inquiry into NSA naughtiness

Smooth Newt

Re: Hmm...

President Truman had a sign on his desk which said "the buck stops here", and with good reason.

There is no excuse for a Western country's leader not to know what his or her government is doing in important areas, or to claim not to know. They have a personal staff whom they can personally choose, and is as many people as they like. A thousand people if they want.

As for being deliberately deceived, they have immensely powerful tools at their fingertips, right up to nuclear options like the ability to replace the head of any government organisation, launch an inquiry into it, abolish it or even, in Europe, pass legislation creating new criminal offences.

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GCHQ puts out open recruitment call for 'white hat' hackers

Smooth Newt
Joke

Re: While the salary is attractive

At £28k the wages of sin do seem rather low these days.

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Why carrier neutrality matters for 'proper hosting'

Smooth Newt
Pint

What a great article!

What an incisive and useful article. Thank you :-)

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EU Commish is rather pleased German BND and NSA thought it worth spying on

Smooth Newt

Re: Ha

No. I really do mean the European Coal and Steel Community, not NATO. See the Wikipedia article on the Schuman Declaration http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schuman_Declaration

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Smooth Newt
Mushroom

Re: Ha

@codejunky I guess they don't teach history in schools any more.

In 1945 most of Europe was lying devastated from war for the second time in a generation. No-one wanted this to happen again. Since copious amounts of steel and energy were essential for building armaments, the idea arose of pooling Franco-German coal and steel production so that it would be impossible for one country ever to become a threat for the other.

The result was the European Coal and Steel Community which grew and grew to become the EU.

So yes, the original precursor to the EU was explicitly created as a political structure to make war between France and Germany impossible.

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Smooth Newt

Re: Ha

"Makes me feel so good about all that money we throw their way. Not"

Personally I think no Franco-German war for the last 70 years is alone worth all that money without even considering all the other stuff they do. For comparison there were three of these conflicts in the previous 70 years, the last two becoming World Wars.

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Ubuntu to shutter year-old clock unlock bug

Smooth Newt

Re: Shortsighted reaction on the side of Canonical

Yes - the consequences of changing the system clock are pretty unpredictable. It is at least going to have an effect on any piece of code that looks at the time and can't handle time going backwards sensibly. How many coders worry about that?

A bit like when buffer overflows emerged as a serious problem - without doing an extensive audit who knows where this might causes vulnerabilities and what they are.

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Your new car will dob you in to the cops if you crash, decrees EU

Smooth Newt
Meh

Re: Gah!

One way of looking at this is as a 100 euro tax being added to the purchase price of a car to improve the safety of the purchaser.

Looking at it that way, is buying an eCall unit with the money the most effective way of doing this.

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The Government Digital Service: The Happiest Place on Earth

Smooth Newt
Pint

Government Digital Strategy: annual report 2014

I just read the annual report for the Government Digital Strategy, published just three months ago, and it says that everything is absolutely spiffing.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/government-digital-strategy-annual-report-2014/government-digital-strategy-annual-report-2014

It starts "This has been a great year for digital government. It’s been 12 months of getting things done. I’m pleased to report that the hard work of the Government Digital Service is transforming the way that the public interacts with the government" and continues in this vein for hundreds of words.

And then at the bottom of the report, there is a link "Is there anything wrong with this page?"

You mean, apart from being complete bollocks...

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London man arrested over $40 MILLION HFT flash crash allegations

Smooth Newt

Re: Really?

The average asking price of a house in Hounslow is £400,073 so there are probably quite a few people living there worth several million.

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Digital killed the radio star: Norway names FM switchoff date

Smooth Newt

Re: Savings

Yes, I doubt the Norwegian Government has been inundated by letters from angry radio listeners demanding that FM be turned off.

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Smooth Newt

Emergency announcements?

"There will also be benefits for the country's emergency services, since emergency announcements can be simultaneously broadcast on all digital channels."

They do that a lot in Norway?

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US Navy robot war-jet refuels in air: But Mav and Iceman are going down fighting

Smooth Newt

>No quite, drones are not as reliable, nor are they as good at adapting to changing situations.

Why shouldn't they be more reliable, and they can certainly have higher performance - no G-force intolerant pilot with slow human speed reactions and pilot error, no heavy cockpit with its instruments and equipment, pilot, 150 lb ejector seat, etc no compromising the aerodynamics to ensure that the pilot has a good all-round view.

But the most important benefit is that robots don't have grieving relatives. The public care when aircrew are killed. Only accountants care about robots.

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Default admin password, weak Wi-Fi, open USB ports ... no wonder these electronic voting boxes are now BANNED

Smooth Newt

Re: "...lack basic security measures against physical and electronic incursions."

The VITA report says that they could get a remote desktop using RDP, also access the devices via default network shares, and that they use Microsoft Access for storing polling data. That sounds like a lot more than just enough operating system.

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Smooth Newt

Re: "...lack basic security measures against physical and electronic incursions."

It takes hard work and dedication to make something that is functionally so simple so shite. The enemy of security is complexity, and yet is packed with unnecessary features. Why does it need a full-fat operating system, wifi and USB anyway.

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NSA: 'Back doors are a bad idea, give us a FRONT door key'

Smooth Newt

Re: I get it, but

>People working in GCHQ are after terrorists and real bad guys.. .

No they're not. If you obey an order then you are as culpable as the person who gave it.

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Popular crypto app uses single-byte XOR and nowt else, hacker says

Smooth Newt

Re: Get a grip!

No you wouldn't use an F1 car to go to the shops because there would be problems - extremely expensive vehicle, no boot, not road legal, no passenger seats, uncomfortable to drive etc. But there is no downside for the consumer to using proper encryption. It's like having a bog standard normal car that you go shopping in which also happens to be able to win F1 races.

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Smooth Newt

Re: What claims?

http://www.nq.com/vault

"Photos & Videos

They’ll be encrypted and only viewable in Vault when you enter the correct password."

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Author fined $500k in first US spyware conviction

Smooth Newt
Alert

Re: FBI

I was wondering why the DoJ statement says "He was also ordered to forfeit the source code for StealthGenie to the government" until I read Efros's comment.

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Encryption is the REAL threat – Head Europlod

Smooth Newt
Thumb Up

Re: Sniff, sniff, ahh the heady whiff of bullshit

They only have themselves to blame.

Most people weren't that fussed until they learnt how the intelligence agencies had been spying on everyone. If their surveillance capability was so vital for counter-terrorism maybe they shouldn't have spaffed it all by spying on the likes of Angela Merkel, foreign competitors, employees of of telecoms companies and everyone else.

It's like a kleptomaniac whinging that all his neighbours have all gone out and put locks on their doors.

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David Cameron's Passport number emailed to footy-head

Smooth Newt
Thumb Up

Re: Is it such a big deal?

There is no obligation, at least for UK citizens, to have either a passport or a driving licence, so they cannot assume that everyone has these documents. Plenty of people don't - many elderly people who no longer drive or travel for example. Offer them a copy of your Bingo Club membership card.

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Huawei networking kit gets the green light from Blighty's spooks

Smooth Newt
WTF?

A recommendation of sorts...

Now that GCHQ have given Huawei kit their seal of approval I definitely won't be buying any.

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Voda UK CEO says one thing about not-spots, Minister of Fun says another

Smooth Newt

Re: Its about time 2G was dropped from coverage maps / statistics.

You are only interested in data coverage but other people are interested in voice coverage too, and many only in voice coverage. Lots of people don’t realise that when they make a call on a 3G phone it often actually uses the 2G network.

Sorting out 3G/4G coverage on high speed trains is a different problem to geographic coverage since a train passing through a good coverage area might not have much coverage. In-motion multipath fast fading effects, signal attenuation from metal carriage walls (and maybe metallised windows too), high passenger density - both as 3G/4G service users and as radio wave absorbers, all add problems. These can only really be solved by putting hot spots on trains which would not solve geographical coverage.

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