* Posts by Voland's right hand

3612 posts • joined 18 Aug 2011

SpaceX makes successful rocket launch

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I'm looking forward to the day when it becomes not even news.

Nearly there. The best indicator is right in front of your eyes. El Reg could not be arsed to pull up any pics and used a stock picture. That is one of the clearest tell-tale signs that this is not really news any more.

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BT installs phone 'spam filter', says it'll strain out mass cold-callers

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Re: A Typical Scam Call I Get

Typical spam call I DO NOT GET.

Hint: I retired BT service in favour of first sipgate, later teleappliant in 2007. My "fixed" lines are actually terminated on an asterisk PBX.

I never had a cold call ever since 2007. I used to have some anti-spam rules on the Asterisk, but dropped them as they were not getting hit at all for years.

The reason you get scam calls is because BT directly sold them your data.

So all this means that now the cold callers will be paying an extra premium in order to get to you direct to BT. Sweet revenue, here it comes.

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Embrace the world of pr0nified IT with wide open, er, arms

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Re: Laser printers are always “faster” and “last longer”

when it comes down to it last hardly

Err... Beg to differ there. The inkjet I used to use as home office printer is now nearly 7 years old, still running and surviving its 5th < -20C winters at my summer house. It is retired there after being replaced by a similarly home office grade laser printer which is now 5+ years old, probably past 100K pages (severely abused by the SWMBO to print exam preparation materials) and still running OK.

You just need to chose very carefully - same as with any IT equipment. Cheaper today is not always cheapest in the long term once you have calculated its running costs over its full depreciation period (around 7 years in our house).

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Apple vs. Samsung goes back to court, again, to re-assess the value of a rounded corner

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It will be interesting to watch

The current methodology of financial awards - "all profits from the product using the invention" is one of the key factors to feed the patent troll environment Decreasing this reward to be proportional to the actual role of the patent pretty much kills the patent trolling business model while still keeping patents and patent licensing as viable means to make money on IPR.

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Canada fines Amazon seven hours of profit for false advertising

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Since when does Amazon have a profit

I thought they reinvested everything and declared even or a loss out of principle. Profit? That is a nouvelle concept.

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Uber, Apple, Amazon and Sully Sullenberger walk into a bar – er, self-driving car committee

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Re: Sullenberger?

It's a rather tough call.

If memory serves me right, NOBODY managed to land the plane on a simulator set up to rerun the Canadian kamikaze attack on that A320 over the Hudson. Same as Air Transat 236 - only a handful of pilots have managed to bring that one successfully down on a simulator. Most fail.

Even so, as you pointed out - in situations like this it is the human's job - the autopilot disengages.

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US Navy runs into snags with aircraft carrier's electric plane-slingshot

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Re: Weapons ready?

That'll be why the RN have had rotary wing AWACS (technically ASAcS) since 1982 and which will be based on the Merlin airframe from around 2018.

Everyone who has gone down that route regrets it. The reason we do not hear it specifically about the Sea King AWACS is that it was not sold for export so there is no real customers to bitch about its failings.

Search on people who have bought Ka-31 which is its closest equivalent. Every single one of its customers and even the Russians themselves are trying to develop or buy a fixed wing replacement. This is despite it having both endurance and service ceiling (with radar and fuel) better than the Sea Kings.

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Re: We all need less stress...

"Hydraulics is just as controllable as Steam, if anything, probably more so"

You will have several tons of hydraulic fluid traveling at 200km/h when the catapult fires. Care to explain how to dampen that. It is like a battering ram.

Steam does not have that problem - you just release it and cycle the piston back.

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Re: We all need less stress...

that would require R&D worth billions of pork barrel but seemed to offer major technical advantages?

The reason why USA is looking at electric catapults and Russia is still sticking with STOBAR launch is Arctic (and as a result, probably, while not officially mentioned, Antarctic).

Operating a steam catapult in -20 is pretty much in the territory of Sci-Fi. You are guaranteed that at least one or more of the release valves with freeze over regardless of what you do leading to a jam and in wost case scenario lost or damaged aircraft. Electric catapults are supposed to be significantly less affected by these problems.

Not that USA Navy will get anywhere near the Arctic without having proper icebreakers - they are (as usual) putting the cart before the donkey here.

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Now that's a Blue Screen of Death: Windows 10 told me to jump off a cliff

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Re: Maybe the tablet, sorry, "surface" was feeling depressed

There is a long standing suspicion that Sirius Cybernetics corporation has a branch in Redmond WA.

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Re: 180 degrees for me ...

Maybe that is the subliminal suggestion in the picture. Sure, first step is a doozy. Just make it in the right direction.

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ISC squishes BIND packet-of-death bugs

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Friday 13th all riight

Well, it is Friday 13th, waddaya expect.

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Clone wars: Wrestler sues Microsoft over Gears of War character

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What does Google picture identification algo say

I wonder what does Google picture identification or "show similar" algo say for either.

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Thanks, Obama: NSA to stream raw intelligence into FBI, DEA and pals

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Devil

Does not surprise me in the slighest

3 letters are like California Hotels. You can check out any time of night, but you can never leave. Obama first internship was with CIA. He never left after that. Funny how nobody even noticed that (or was bothered in the slightest) when he was being elected the first time. Change? Maybe. But definitely not the change civil rights activists have been looking for.

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Oh ALIS, don't keep us waiting: F-35 jet's software 'delayed'

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Re: " whoever finds it can probably look back and KNOW where the aircraft has been"

No one has any idea of the protocol used to transfer the data.

That is fairly obvious - you just need to look at the delivery dates. Clearly, neither the QA testers nor the programmers know it too.

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Could get messy if its the "wrong" side that finds the smoldering wreckage.

Fixed it for you: Could get messy if its the "wrong" side that finds the smoldering DIGITAL wreckage.

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FBI takes gag out of Cloudflare's mouth after three-year legal battle

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Re: Frightening

I mean the FBI ought to be the good guys

Watch J. Edgar: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1616195/

Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

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Crims shut off Ukraine power in wide-ranging anniversary hacks

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Re: How sure this is not hype

Well, shall I shed tears or what?

Ukraine pretended to investigate and in reality did f*** all (if not assisted) in more than 8 cases of blowing up the grid pylons between mainland and Crimea with dynamite. They got whacked in return.

Let's say you are making a living off software and you cannot work for days because the Ukrainian police are standing around smoking and giggling while "freedom fighters" attach dynamite to a grid pylon. Let's say you do some of the gray (if not black) hat stuff to make a living. Are you going to be pissed. I would.

There are plenty of people entirely unrelated to Putin and the Russian state living in Crimea (quite a few of them way towards the black part of the hat color). Some of them are even on the FBI most wanted list (you can check last well known locations for them - at least 2 were in Crimea last time I looked). So the Ukraine grid being knocked out as a retaliation does not surprise me. In the slightest.

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This'll be the next thing Trump crows about: Apple assembling servers on American soil

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Re: assemble its own servers

assemble its own servers

It is cheaper to build your own then to buy for Cloud if you are someone the size of Apple.

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Devil

Tax Dodge once more

The idea of a foreign trade zone is that it is a transit destination for goods allowing companies to improve logistics and/or perform assembly and manufacturing specifically for exports in a reduced tariff environment.

Declaring your datacenter a foreign trade zone beats the Irish "not registered here" dodge by all accounts in terms of creative accounting. What's next? Move HQ to the moon for tax purposes or declare Steve Job a CEO again as it is more tax efficient to have a dead one?

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Anti-smut law dubs PCs, phones 'pornographic vendor machines', demands internet filters

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Re: Japan now inaccessible from North Dakota!

Oh fuck.

503 Service unavailable, cross the state line and retry your request.

Though the more appropriate will be for the state legislature web site to return 418. It is one case where this error code is spot on way too many levels.

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St Jude patching Merlin@home heart kit

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Re: How about we be given the option of audits…?

A real audit or a pen-test by a proper crew is expensive. You are looking at sums north of 200K for a pop. 99% of PHBs will balk at that number and do it only if it is a regulatory requirement.

So unfortunately, if these devices are to be audited or pen-tested there are only two options.

1. Short the stock and have the hacker make the money there. Make this is the norm and do not complain when it is being done to you.

2. Make the auditing/pen-testing a regulatory requirement and create a market where you can hire crews to do so.

A beneficial side effect of both is that some of the grews operating in the grey (or even black) area today may move to more white hat jobs so either case is win-win (provided that you do not have congressmorons adding them to embargo lists without a shred of evidence to support it).

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For Fark's sake! Fark fury follows 5-week ad ban for 5-year-old story

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He was cleared, and an article was written about it complete with the – to be honest, pretty innocent – image that had got him into trouble in the first place.

Hehe... I see the reg is not taking any risks as far as losing their own ads. No images, not even links.

And people were furious about Facebook trying to censor history...

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Google nukes ad-blocker AdNauseam, sweeps remains out of Chrome Web Store

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Re: Give me the option

Here is a good answer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fi8kYcl2Y38

the one you are going to get.

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Devil

Re: Maybe they should've thought the whole video ad thing over

text-only ads won't be able to force malware onto a device because there's no javascript,

There is. To load it as the alternative is server code which is not feasible. Otherwise agree.

There are several issues here:

0. There is no Google. The company should be called is Doubleclick. It subsumed Google and Google adopted its advertising practices after it "took over" it (quotes needed).

1. Text only ads need a very high degree of relevance in order to generate significant click-through rates. Google decided to forgo the relevance level for sake of more realtime ads and trending. This is the so called dumb-ass to smart-ass transition ~ 9 years ago. In reality - that was the moment of internal takeover by Doubleclick - as the ads stopped being relevant they had to become Doubleclicky shout in your face crap (primary reason Google text ads took most of Double's market).

2. We are back to a point where the lion share of ad spend on the market are from big brands. These do not rely on clickthrough at all - they are per-impression ads. They are there to "maintain presence". They are also the ones who have marketing departments with budgets sufficient to feed the ad agencies to generate the flashy video crap. If Google decides to switch to text this revenue goes elsewhere. As it is now a public corporation a 90% drop in revenue is not going to work well with its shareholders.

It is a classic lose-lose situation where the only solution is the emergence of a new player which does text only ads. That unfortunately is not likely to happen as there is no way for a newcomer to push out Google from the search space which is both its relevance info provider as well as primary opportunity to serve ads.

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Devil

Re: Come on

As for El Reg - not one ad appears although I guess with AdN they are generating the revenue even with a big fat zero on viewability.

That is exactly Google's problem here. It is not malware for user's PC. It is malware for their advertising system and financial streams.

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You have the right to be informed: Write to UK.gov, save El Reg

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Re: re. Quadsys

Except they're not allowed to do that. First they have to take it to arbitration with the regulator

1. You missed "approved" in the definition of the regulator

2. 90%+ of the Internet press does not want to be anywhere near the currently approved regulators and cannot agree on founding a new one and carrying it through to approval. This includes el-reg too as it is not a member of an approved regulator if memory serves me right.

This is the rub here - that this is a restriction on the freedom of expression (article 10 of ECHR) through a roundabout way. The regulator can enforce specific limits on what the press says without any judicial oversight and it is given a court statute without any basic rule of law in its rulings. The government giggles in the background as it has achieved its objective to control the press based on the demands of its paymasters without being seen to do so in the open.

In addition to that, this creates a registration regime for the press and ensures that only the privileged few are free to speak. This was somewhat the case courtesy of UK libel law, it is now made even more discriminatory. Freedom of speech? Article 10? Yeah. Bollocks - it is only for the privileged ones who are members of an "approved" club (so the law says). Everybody else is not entitled.

This is exactly why this should be taken with the ECHR Court - it is a clear violation of article 10 (if the UK libel law gets nuked as a collateral, well, only more to celebrate). This also needs to be done before May pulls UK out of that to join Belarus in the club of countries where only approved can speak freely only on approved matters expressing only approved opinions.

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Voland's right hand
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Kick of an article 10 lawsuit while you still have time

Well, this is a fairly clear violation of article 10 of ECHR.

1. It is specifically designed to stifle the freedom of expression and has no other function.

2. It does not fall under the exemption statutes specified in 10.2

So, in the short amount of time remaining before the High Chancellor(ess) Theresa May pulls us out of that convention I suggest someone kicks off a lawsuit against UK on this one *.

(*) I suggest that person applies for asylum somewhere else too as he will be one of the first to join the population of Lark Hill after the next elections.

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Asteroid nearly gave Earth a new feature, two days after its discovery

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I'd rather stick with Robert Duval and Mary McCormack

At least they had the right attitude: " Well, look on the bright side. We'll all have high schools named after us. "

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Re: What if it had hit?

At least in the movie...

If memory serves me right, the book while not openly stating it as the first implies it was the first hit.

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Renault goes open source with next-gen electric buggy you might generously call 'a car'

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I wouldn't want to take something that small on a motorway

Imagine this one in Paris, Rome or on a bad day Madrid. It fits right in. So even if it will get on a M-Way it will be the city stretch, speed limit at 80 or 100 km/h and only for a few km.

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Re: Electric Kit Car

It has become significantly more difficult to get them on the road - both certification and insurance.

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Let's go ARM wrestling with an SEO link spammer

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Why are you surprised?

I am the main editor at [website promoting bodybuilder supplements].

I thought you know what these do to your brain...

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NGO to crowdfund legal challenge against Investigatory Powers Act

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Re: Chipped in and gift aided

While there is still time.

In any case, even if we kill it will be reinstated in 2019. Britain uber alles.

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Man jailed for 3 days after Texas cops confuse cat litter for meth

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Re: I carry a whole bag in winter

After watching that video id suggest taking the handbrake off and not gunning it

That video also looked like he was trying to start in first instead of second (or even third on some cars). The tires would have gotten him a few points on his license anywhere but UK too. Not road legal in most of Eu from Nov to March.

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Voland's right hand
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Re: I carry a whole bag in winter

You should look into Liquid Snow Chain Spray.

Different use cases. Getting out of being stuck vs driving. You usually get stuck on ice or very compacted snow where snowsocks, winter tyres and even snow chains may not be enough. You need to get out to somewhere where you can drive with your current tire set. The classic remedy is sand and that is what you can replace with cat litter.

Driving on snow for a period of time? With a spray-on gimmick? No thanks. I saw the tires on that Seat in the video, in any European country trying to get onto the road with this tyre in snow would be an immediate 3-6 points on your license (*)

Disclaimer - all of my cars have either a proper set of winter shoes or all-weathers which are known to be good up to 5cm. Even the UK resident ones. Even my 4x4 has a set of proper winter shoes to use between November and March. I use them in proper snow though (the kind you see this winter in Europe). I also have a set of proper snow chains in the boot just in case (even on the 4x4). And 25l cat litter bag too.

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Voland's right hand
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I carry a whole bag in winter

It is the best replacement for sand in winter while weighting only a fraction of the weight of a bag of sand. Two small shovels full under the wheels can get you out of a lot of trouble without having to dig out the vehicle.

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Stop us if you've heard this one before: Seamen spread over California

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Devil

Re: Great Minds Think A Like

You are a bit late to the party. So is USA. By 20+ years.

Read up on this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P-700_Granit

Third paragraph.

And thanks god, this has never been fired in anger.

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Pharma hate figure Martin Shkreli suspended from Twitter

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He has a ticket for the inauguaration

Shkreli has a first row ticket for the inauguration? Why I am not surprised in the slightest...

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CES 2017 roundup: The good, the bad, and the frankly bonkers

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Re: My fav useless item of the show.

I've heard of folks using photographer's jackets in the same way.

If you show up in gear like that at an airport expect the metal detector to buzz on you slightly later than you would expect after you pass through it.

They have the observation officer's "attention to this person" button now wired to the buzzer (at least at LHR) and they openly discriminate against people wearing fishermen jackets and cargo pants. I have had it buzz on me 3 times lately - all because of wearing cargo trousers with 10 pockets (4 front, 2 back, 2 thigh, 2 ankle).

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Paris Hilton

Re: Well...

A single belt can be worn with many different trousers

Especially if it is black. I still have some fond recollections of a slightly-built female acquaintance of mine I was walking home after a night out my first year in Uni.

She told me off to stop trying to be a hero and shoved me off to the side to crack the skulls of two 2m tall, 90kg+ gorillas in the subway (she was definitely slightly built - 45 kg, 1m 60cm). She did have a belt in the right color scheme. Nicely matching her ... err.. jeans..

So if you are really uncomfortable with carrying, going, etc in a particular are either do not do it at all, or do it with the right person (even if that person is your dear self).

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ZTE laying off 3,000

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Re: "front companies to get around sanctions on Iran"

Ah, do not worry about that. USA is about to score itself the biggest self-goal of the century.

The new strategy of Trump's transition team is that it wants to enforce the agreement strictly. That will be even more fun than trying to repeal it.

It is something the other parties (Iran included) will immediately agree with provided that any disagreement goes to court (f.e. one of the the arbitrage courts regularly hearing state vs state or corp vs state claims). That will be fun to watch. BIG FUN as there is so far a single violator on that agreement and it is not Iran.

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Microsoft goes retro with Vista, Zune-style Windows Neon makeover

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Devil

Re: retro?

I was here when Atlantis was a thing.

I thought it is still a thing - just in the Pegasus galaxy and you need a ZPM to dial a Pegasus prefix code on the Stargate.

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FBI let alleged pedo walk free rather than explain how they snared him

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Devil

Re: School Teacher

Nope, Germany too

For the cases which you are quoting the crime of data theft and/or violation of various secrecy laws were committed _OUTSIDE_ Germany. After that the data was given to the German tax office within German law and used as a basis for a suspicion for a search warrant to be served on the local German bank which in turn resulted in data for the prosecution.

So, while dubious and involving theft early on by a 3rd party outside Germany, it does not involve the German police doing something outright illegal like stealing the data themselves or trading with the mob to buy zero days or exploit toolkits to install on hijacked servers. That sort of hijinks is pretty much unique to the FBI. No other law enforcement agency around the world does it on such industrial scales.

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Devil

Re: School Teacher

This is USA - its constitution prohibits searches without a due cause and its precedent base disqualifies any evidence obtained in a search without a reasonable cause from court (variation of the poison fruit doctrine). FBI refused to produce evidence that its search was reasonable and compliant with the warrant they were working on. Case closed.

The guy would have been convicted in the UK where fruit of the poison tree does not apply. UK is one of the only two countries in the world without a written constitution and where evidence obtained by illegal means is admissible in court. The other one is Saudi Arabia.

Elsewhere - not so much. There, the laws on searches and evidence in court all have some form of the poison fruit doctrine.

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BOOST! LEGO's computing future and its ground-breaking past

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Re: One of the world's great companies

as benign as it is possible to be

They did try to use patents to ensure that you cannot manufacture compatible ones.

It is the well known "lego case".

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Former car rental biz staff gave customers' details to phone pests

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Re: Buying stolen details

Presently it is not. It will shortly be.

This is the only way the government(s) can get to the likes of Assange as there is no criminal offense for which they can nail them today.

So it is not a matter of if handling stolen data will be handled like fencing stolen goods. It is a matter of when will this happen.

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Dodgy dealer on Amazon lures marks towards phishing site

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I am surprised the address is visible

Amazon actually obfuscates, removes and redirects any address put by the merchant into email or pages to point to its system so it can track it. I had a couple of dealings with various cheap electronics suppliers from china and they had to make the address into an image and insert it into the email for it to go through.

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D-Link sucks so much at Internet of Suckage security – US watchdog

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Re: Sympathy for the Devil

I suspect occams razor,

More likely Hanlon's razor: "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity,"

In the specific case of DLink it is: "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by outsourcing,". Dlink does not write any of the software for its devices. It does not do hardware either. It slaps a label on something built to a spec defined by marketing. This approach looked quite cute 10 years ago as it allowed to cut costs and let go all those pesky engineers located in high cost locations. Well, I am not sure it looks cost effective any more. Lawsuits from the like of FTC and compliance to consent decrees mandated by the likes of FTC cost way more than any cost savings from not having your own engineering.

Not taking into account a possible tactical nuke from FTC is even worse as it opens you up to fiduciary duty/FEC strategic nuke.

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Re: WTF

Complaint is not on CVEs. Complaint is regarding misrepresentation - Dlink is presenting its products as secure while, as we all know, they leave a lot to be desired in that area.

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