* Posts by John 98

107 posts • joined 14 Oct 2009

Page:

ISIS command post obliterated after 'moron' jihadi snaps a selfie, says US Air Force

John 98

Re: And the US didn't

There was actually talk of ceasing to share ULTRA with the US. Churchill decided the political hit of doing so outweighed the risk of losing the data. So maybe little has changed?

0
0

Home Office staff: Over 100 of our work mobiles lost or pinched last year

John 98

Inevitable

I was the minion who dished out laptops and phones. In the end you find honest, competent valued people lose them and you have to accept it and plan round that. So I am not surprised or shocked that an outfit the this size has lost 100. I would welcome, though, some reassurance about what data was on them and how well it was protected

8
0

Microsoft and Hewlett Packard Enterprise salute EU flag, blast Brexiteers

John 98

listening to lies?

Being old enough to remember the Suez Crisis, I can tell you we had already lost our national sovereignty by 1956. Wake up, smell the coffee

If the European Union is undemocratic, some simple research will reveal that the UK government has steadfastly blocked attempts to remedy things, much to the frustration of many in Brussels.

If we leave, we have no idea (nor negotiating cards, btw) what trade deals we will get with either US or EU. It is a leap in the dark. Watch Boris when the Yanks tell us to sign up for Schengen or starve

This is before the other stuff - 3 million odd British living in Europe, Scots wanting independence, pound already fallen 10%,

3
1

Non-police orgs merrily accessed PNC without authority, says HMIC

John 98

On the ownership issue, is this deliberate obfuscation? A wizard wheeze which guarantees it's impossible to pin down who is responsible for anything? Or am I just confusing conspiracy and cock up?

6
0

Labour: We want the Snoopers' Charter because of Snowden

John 98

A necessary evil?

The government collecting this data may be (even though the US investigation suggests not) a necessary evil, but even then it should be out in the open, as limited as possible and tightly controlled by judges - not bureaucrats or politicians.

The mere fact it exists, especially given the governments dire record on IT projects, means it will be misused by politicians and staff who are political fanatics, paedophiles, identity thieves, spies or terrorists (or have been blackmailed or bribed by same). It will also inevitably be hacked or tampered with ...

The condescending, nanny knows best, attempts by our politicians to have us ignore these obvious risks is deeply depressing and disturbing.

This is, of course, a good argument against Brexit - Brussels will probably torpedo this assault on our liberty, which our spineless parliament proposes to rubber-stamp.

15
3

UK.gov says it's letting 1,000 SMEs push digital wares at civil servants

John 98

Agile and flexible ?

When applied to the military, it meant not buying equipment for anything (it neatly answered the charge of preparing for the last war). Squaddy solution No.1 - nick it off the Yanks.

Where I worked (a nameless multinational) it meant not preparing for anything - any problem, however predictable, was greeted by the same panic. The firm has since been taken over ...

Management jargon of the worst kind, but great for the consultants who get hired with the money that should have been spent on decent kit.

2
0

Safe Harbor 2.0: US-Europe talks on privacy go down to the wire

John 98

Seems they have all missed something

The bottom line is that the European equivalent of the Supreme Court has ruled that the current systems breach folks' constitutional rights in Europe. Any agreement, whether the European and US executive branches or the companies like it or not, has to address that issue to succeed.

If the US government is saying the entire planet is, however, under American law, perhaps they should give about another seven billion people citizenship and a vote.

And the companies - their lawyers must have seen this coming years ago and they did nothing. I guess a billion dollars a day in fines will concentrate minds wonderfully on a restructure to cover the situation. Not very difficult, European subsidiary owns servers in Europe ...

3
0

Criminal records checks 'unlawful' and 'arbitrary' rules High Court

John 98

Does it apply to MPs?

I suggest requiring MPs (or candidates) to stand down should anything come up on their check ,,,

5
0

America to ITU: Sort out your spectrum policy

John 98

Negotiate - what's that?

Sounds like the US may end up out of step with the rest of the planet, and live to regret it. Maybe someone with greater knowledge can enlighten us? Is there any consensus elsewhere on how to use this spectrum - seems 5.9 and 600 are already spoken for?

1
0

Future Snowden hunt starts with audit of NSA spooks' privileges

John 98

Scary too

Sounds like sensible (and long overdue) overhaul needed because they have no idea of who is inputting data nor of who is copying and extracting it. In such a large outfit there must be staff open to bribery or blackmail. So what exactly have the Russians, Chinese, ISIS and the Mafia walked off with (or maybe inserted, deleted, changed)? If the incompetence is really so great, one need hardly bother with conspiracy theories to get seriously worried...

13
0

'Govt will not pass laws to ban encryption' – Baroness Shields

John 98

They are linked but...

I have worked in a polling station and yes, they are linked. However, it needs a court order (which can only be given if there is reasonable suspicion of fraud) to get the linking paper unsealed and everybody involved is personally responsible if anything naughty comes to light. After that, you are not searching a database, you are trawling through a mound of paper. Obviously there is the "What if Hitler gets in?" issue but, on t'other hand, it does mean there is evidence to lock people up for fraud.

7
0

FBI boss: No encryption backdoor law (but give us backdoors anyway)

John 98

Re: Idiots or traitors

It won't only be be Uncle Sam demanding a backdoor - there will soon be 200+ plus other governments saying use of same software without their backdoor too is illegal. Then, soon after, it will be illegal to use it with any other government's backdoor open. Happy travelling ....

5
0

Silicon Valley fights European Court of Justice ruling with small print

John 98

Re: Lot of nonsense

Apple tried messing with a European court a year or two back and finally realised they were getting themselves into very deep, brown, sticky stuff. One doubts the court would consider your T & Cs valid. Just maybe if your client is a sophisticated, international organisation, but not with the average consumer. Try the same stunt on a US court, and see how far you get.

14
0

EU, China promise 5G cooperation, seek an understanding on standards

John 98

Surely you are forgetting Panama and Puerto Rico.

1
0

How much info did hackers steal on US spies? Try all of it

John 98

What the Chinese did with it?

One imagines that the Chinese have used all this data to quietly log in to a multitude of systems using the accounts of users with little technical knowledge, or concern for security, with easliy guessed passwords. They may well have reams of other background information, plus of course the abilty to cause chaos whenever they wish. And an amusing thought, they may have known for quite a while all about what the NSA and CIA have been up to round the world. Maybe more than Snowdon? And maybe been allowing some misleading "hacks" into their own systems for good measure?

4
0

Australia cracks tech giants' tax dodge code

John 98

And their small competitors?

Let's hear it for the little guy, who faces unfair competition from multi-nationals paying no tax anywhere. There is an argument for ensuring these companies pay tax, since government is unfortunately a necessary evil and has to be paid for.

One can look at their global profits (a number they have reasons for declaring and maximising) and tax them on a percentage thereof, the percentage of global sales in your country. Seems to me a treaty along such lines would give each government a fair share and the multinational pays taxes like everyone else. The actual rate - and permissible write offs for R & D etc. - on its home share would be a matter for each government, while the company can of course simply stop business in a state which sets a stupid rate.

0
0

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

John 98

Front brakes are dangerous!

Or so the "experts" used to say in the twenties - they would only encourage reckless driving. Every safety improvement on cars draws a lunatic response. Furthermore, why shouldn't cars have a black box - aren't the rest of us entitled to know whether a potentially lethal piece of kit was being operated safely in a public space?

4
8

RADIOACTIVE WWII aircraft carrier FOUND OFF CALIFORNIA

John 98

Re: In California? Maybe

I think you need to demonstrate that the wreck is far enough from the islands to be outside US territory to get the pedant's prize. And, maybe the Navy wanted it in territorial waters where they could easily deny access should the need arise.

17
0

Ford: Our latest car gizmo will CHOKE OFF your FUEL if you're speeding

John 98

lamposts = 30 unless too tall

The old rule, I believe still in force, was that lampposts generally imply a 30 limit (unless over 7 meters tall). Parliament in its infinite wisdom apprently thought the average driver could easily tell ...

2
0
John 98

Failed test - progress minus in the jargon

The examiner in effect considers whether he would find it frustrating following somebody so slow. Obviously though, there is a problem if a sign is missing - perhaps another argument for having a camera on board so you can appeal the verdict. BTW, on the examiner's own test to get the job, you need to drive as fast as is safely and legally possible. So, on the motorway 65= Fail, 75= Fail, unless the tester agrees the conditions require it.

2
0

Hello? Police? Yes, I'm a car and my idiot driver's crashed me

John 98

US company's Europen subsidiary

IF the US company (GM, Ford) uses a local subsidiary, that company is bound by EU law. The US can order the US owner to deliver, but the local staff and board will have a legal duty to refuse.The end ...

0
2

Euro ministers ditch plan to ban roaming charges

John 98

The minutes, please!

This is what comes of letting a gang of politicians hide in a smoke filled room. About time these meetings were in public and minuted so we can all see who got a brown envelope.

2
0

BOFFINS: Oxygen-free, methane-based ALIENS may EXIST on icy SATURN moon Titan

John 98

Re: So...what?

only a probe? - they may pose all sorts of threats. Obviously there should be lavish funding to hack their networks and monitor potential terrorists seeking to operate from Antartica.

2
1
John 98

But they are yanks!

What did you expect?

15
2

Spotty Ceres baffles boffins with bright patches

John 98

A strangeness scale. Excellent idea, but we dedicated Reg. readers need to know what the official Reg. celestial strangeness unit is going to be. The "weirdo" doesn't seem entirely suitable...

2
0

Free WiFi coming to UK trains ... in two years

John 98

train wifi - good news maybe later

I understand the rail companies have internal uses for high speed data between train and track - maintenance of both, tighter control of trains to save fuel, achieve capacity increases etc.etc. The current gsm-r is to be replaced and a new much faster system is to be installed along all tracks. Some genius has worked out (and got it on the agenda) it should be used for passenger wifi. As ever, there are international standards to be ratified, kit to be tested and so on so it will take a while.

0
0

Magnifico! Galileo satellite nudged back into correct orbit

John 98

Same as the US could save loads of money by using Glasnost. Remember, the US has been known to put pressure on other nations in various ways including denying use (or the threatening to deny use) of GPS.

0
0

Top US privacy bod: EU should STOP appeasing whiny consumers

John 98

What it proves (or at least tells you)

Is that the British government, the chief advocate of an EU run by quango and smoke filled room (the Council of Ministers) has achieved its goal. Other denizens of the smoke filled room and quango have been known to point out the absurdity of the situation - news carefully suppressed in the UK in favour of rants about "remote and unaccountable Brussels" by the architects of said absurdity.

7
0

Boffins: It's EASY to make you GRASS YOURSELF UP for crimes you never did

John 98

Confession as evidence

Confessions are unusable in court in many countries. I am no great fan of the legal profession, but fair dos, some of them got here centuries ago and drew the right conclusion.

1
0

Lloyds supplier payments TITSUP: What, you want MONEY from a BANK?

John 98

The bankrupcy option

I believe any creditor of a plc can, after 28 days, have the company declared bankrupt. I know a guy did it to Rolls Royce in the 70s. The magistrates gave RR a 24 hour stay on condition the MD appeared in person first thing the next morning to grovel (and pay - cash).

6
0

UFOs in the '50s skies? CIA admits: 'IT WAS US'

John 98

We of the Flat Earth Society know better

There are no aliens - the limited size of the dome over the earth precludes their existence. The unexplained sightings were either dragons or the KGB.

4
0

NHS quango fatcats spend £2m tax dosh on iPads and iPhones

John 98

A fair few, of course - it's bound to happen (I was the guy who handed them out). The replacement cost is annoying, but peanuts in the great scheme of things. As somebody pointed out, the issue is what data is on them. Hopefully none

2
1
John 98

Re: Better Value

Hmm - a bum on a seat costs a six figure number p.a. nowadays, so - provided the users are achieving anything useful at all (I too have doubts) - the ithingy only needs to add 1% or less to their output to pay for itself. Perhaps the most pertinent question is how many data collators, support staff and other lesser minions have ithings (and sensible uses for them)?

0
1

Russia, China could ban western tech if they want to live in the PAST

John 98

Works all ways

Any country banning any technology (for any reason but typically national security) runs the risk of losing out. If the West chooses to ban good ideas from China or Russia, we may hurt ourselves more than them - and fall behind.

2
0

US escalates Stingray mobe-snooping secrecy battle as judge unseals evidence

John 98

Operation battery death

So presumably anybody on the affected network has their phone battery flattened as the thing shouts away at the top of its voice? That could add up to a lot of inconvenience before we consider the legal aspects ...

7
1

London's King of Clamps shuts down numberplate camera site

John 98

Probably true

If you have access to enough camera feeds, police logs etc., surely you can do everything he claims - E & O E, as someone has pointed out? As Freedom of Information brings various benefits, it also brings this rather dubious one. Short of passing a law (unenforceable) against data mining - ha! ha! - I suspect we have to learn to live with it.

Freedom of information = Death of Privacy - discuss! I feel a Reith Lecture coming on.

1
1

Eurocops want to build remote car-stopper, shared sensor network

John 98

This obviously raises plenty of questions, but then it won't happens for years yet and stopping drunks, bank robbers or little old ladies driving the wrong way down the motorway does have attractions. I don't think the technical problems are insurmountable - and with driverless cars coming, it may work out at telling the car to park at the next lay-by so Mr. Plod can have a word.

On the legal side - the main reason Brussels is undemocratic is because the UK government has tirelessly lobbied for exactly that. The EU is run from a smoke filled room (the Council of Ministers) with no minutes, public scrutiny etc. And guess who has always insisted on that?

0
1

Cameron: UK public is fine with domestic spying

John 98

Dave obviously wasn't in my local. Power corrupts, and anyone handed the power these people are being given will be corrupted. Once they are corrupted, we'll all be wondering if we weren't better off with Al Quaeda ...

8
0

MPAA spots a Google Glass guy in cinema, calls HOMELAND SECURITY

John 98

I'm not American, but - IF the facts are roughly right - I would be worried about (i) how private corporations are getting to spend my tax dollars and (ii) the stupidity and arrogance of the agents. In my travels, including behind the Iron Curtain (and no, I wasn't a fan) about the rudest officials I ever met were in the US. Not all ,but some

7
0

EE BrightBox routers can be hacked 'by simple copy/paste operation'

John 98

Due diligence?

One is always wary of more regulation, but - since the average punter can't help themselves much on this - maybe ISPs should have a legal obligation to ensure their kit is secure. At the risk of annoying UKIP, this might be a job for Steely Neelly.

Oh - and the shotgun video was a brave move. I don't suppose NSA will get stressed, but will GCHQ report him to about 96 different agencies?

1
0

NSA: It's TRUE, we grab 200 MILLION of your text messages A DAY globally

John 98

Re: Most useless Job ever !

Indeed - what's he for and what are any of them for? Can the spooks tell us costs per life saved, losses to criminals prevented and whether we are getting value for money? One suspects traffic cops, kidney machines etc. might be much better value.

7
0

You... (Sigh). You store our financials in a 'Clowds4U' account?

John 98

Laziness or hindered

It takes a month to get an account set up on the official tool. It doesn't work anyway. Meanwhile the customers are screaming.

You phone IT - their head is the CFO, who only knows what his teenage son has managed to teach him and is only interested in not spending money; they have no budget, are short staffed, haven't anywhere to backup enterprise critical stuff regularly and are trying to cannibalise one ancient server to keep an old one going etc. They will pass your complaint on, but don't hold your breathe.

I have encountered all these, singly or sometimes stirred together in a lovely cocktail of chaos. Lazy IT, or - just maybe - the organisation is taking the customary 40 years (waiting for a generation to retire) that they have needed since the dawn of time to use a new technology sensibly.

5
0

NSA refuses to deny spying on members of Congress

John 98

Re: It's different when it's happening to you.

It's a politican who noted "power corrupts". Given the almost absolute freedom and power given the NSA the noble lord predicted they will soon end up absolutely corrupted - however nice they were to start with.

4
0

Justice Ministry to spaff £70k finding out how prisoners like to use ILLEGAL mobes

John 98

Re: Calling home is extortionate

Well - common sense says it pays for itself - less prisoners coming straight back in on release. And less citizens being mugged or burgled (assuming the Home Office cares - one wonders).

2
0
John 98

Calling home is extortionate

The per minute rate for prisoners phoning home legally is extortionate - especally when you're earning a tenner a week (if I recall correctly 50p + a minute and a lot more if home is overseas). So many of the mobile calls probably are to home and family.

Obviously prisoners' calls need to be controlled, but the present stupid phone policy (family breakdown is a major factor in reoffending and many prisoners are illiterate, so forgot letters) needs rethinking. Make calls home cheap\free and then you know any mobile call detected is for nefarious reasons and needs investigating.

And a femtocell or a tower should be pretty easy in those prisons (a fair few) which are out in the sticks. But I suspect the civil service has been quoted £100m by Capita to do this ...

I used to work in a prison btw.

11
0

US BACKDOORED our satellites, claim UAE

John 98

I doubt UAE can win. Any bird they buy will have US, Russian, Chinese, whoever's chips in it. And design/build your own using only your own relatives in their spare time (who else can one trust?) is a slightly ambitious project.

2
1

That Google ARM love-in: They want it for their own s*** and they don't want Bing having it

John 98

Spurring Intel on

I imagine Intel will now work a lot harder at cutting power requirements - Google probably think a million or two spent on that well worth it. If, as a bonus, their research suggests they can have custom chips which give them a hardware headstart over rivals, then that puts them in an even more desirable place. A place, which, of course, they don't want anybody else reaching first.

The cost of blue sky thinking for a year or two probably barely registers on their financial radar at present; the interesting (and expensive) decisions will come - but later.

3
1

IT MELTDOWN ruins Cyber Monday for RBS, Natwest customers

John 98

Re: It does make you wonder what sort of hardware our banking network is running on.

And bits of network Rail rely on Victorian cast iron. One bright young man has even proposed computerised signalling, but with the safety interlocking handled by said Victorian iron - cheaper and maybe safer than trying to do it in software.

2
0

Why a plain packaging U-turn from UK.gov could cost £3bn a year

John 98

Could try harder

Strange that the fag firms, with their touching concern for the taxpayer's pocket, don't offer some solution - perhaps the "plain packets" could contain a rifd or security strip like a bank note? And of course a new levy on their profits linked to the increased shortfall might stimulate their ingenuity.

3
0

Huge Antarctic iceberg: 1 Singapore? 8 Manhattans? This is CHAOS

John 98

Confused - how many double deck buses in an IoW?

And the debate appears to lack rigour - cubic buses as per the Pimms standard or square buses as in Singapores (which I understand is almost flat - ignoring sky scrapers, of course)

1
0

Page:

Forums