* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

The AA's copped to credit data blurt, but what about car-crash incident response?

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Re: Do such things really exist?

"Also Nationwide ... but then you have to weigh the cost to yourself of a strop :) moving all accounts would be a *lot* of work, and end up spiting me."

I've done that twice - not with Nationwide because I've never been with them. If they give bad/negative customer service then don't stay as a customer.

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Re: Not comprimised?

" The data in the leak was no different to what you find in the dustbins on every gas station forecourt where someone pays by credit card, then throws the receipt in the bin as they pass it on the way back to the car."

That's the customer's choice. The AA leaking data isn't. There's a difference.

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Prompt disclosure to be mandated by the GDPR isn't just some piece of arbitrary red tape. It's because it's a Good Thing. The fact that it's the best part of a year from becoming mandatory doesn't make it less of a Good Thing right not. It's not yet being mandatory in no way excuses the AA from acting properly.

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Re: Pages rule of life ...

"companies that have handled their fuck ups properly."

Do such things really exist?

'My dream job at Oracle left me homeless!' – A techie's relocation horror tale

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Re: Oracle treating employees badly?

The hiring manager took it personally and took to calling me at home and telling me I had "Insulted Oracle".

That sounds like a compliment. It's not an easy thing to do.

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"The last few decades have seen a fairly steady decline in real wages for a large swath of the working population while the costs of food, housing, and life in general have continued to climb."

There's nothing particularly recent about that. It was the same in the 70s. An FY fund is invaluable but almost impossible to put together when you need it most.

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Re: my relocation bundle

"nobody at the local council offices or the bank spoke a word of English"

I wouldn't be too certain of that :)

In England they might be able to but not necessarily bothered to.

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Re: my relocation bundle

"the new employer should be understanding"

"Should" is the key word. In this case the employer was Oracle.

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Re: Surely Oracle could have found him somewhere to live

"Apparently Oracle have at least one slow, old boat that they're not doing anything with right now."

Yes, but it cost a lot and they'd have to charge a big rent on it to get their money back. Remember, this is Oracle.

Ex-GDS man to pluck tech strings at UKCloud

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"CTO at the DVLA for more than two years."

IME that's not a great recommendation.

Ransomware-slinging support scammers hire local cash mule in Oz

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“fraudulently set up three Australian companies"

How would one set up a company fraudulently? I suppose one could use a false name. Otherwise one could legitimately set up the company even if the intent was to use it fraudulently but deciding on intent would be a matter for the courts to decide. Without evidence to the contrary it's entirely possible that this bloke thought he was being offered a genuine business deal.

The police wouldn't be trying to prejudice the trial would they?

G20 calls for 'lawful and non-arbitrary access to available information' to fight terror

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" I'm also believing that the governments would really like to read our thoughts too."

Funny that you should say that ... https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/07/10/darpa_brain_interface/

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"It is time we, in the global open source community, really invested in creating an open equivalent"

The guts of this, PGP, or GPG if you prefer, already exists. The trouble is that it isn't mandatory in any protocols.

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"Our governments know (they must) that it isn't possible to provide this ad hoc, on demand 'illumination' without fundamentally weakening encryption as a whole"

I'm not sure that they do. As a group they include few with any technical nous and probably reckon that the experts are telling them it can't be done simply because it's a bit hard and they, the experts, just don't want to be bothered doing it. After all, they, the governments, are legislators and fully entitled to say what has to be done, the rest is just implementation for the ordinary people to get on with.

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"In line with the expectations of our peoples we also encourage collaboration with industry to provide lawful and non-arbitrary access to available information where access is necessary for the protection of national security against terrorist threats."

Translation: people expect us to be up to no good.

HPE PointNext globo boss grilled by El Reg

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‘look the nice thing about you guys is that you’ve been my data centre player’

Interesting use of the past tense.

Insurers may have to adjust policies to reflect 'silent' cyber risks

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"56% of respondents to a survey confirming that they had a formal cybersecurity strategy in place"

I wonder if the AA was one of these.

Bloke takes over every .io domain by snapping up crucial name servers

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"So which is it el 'reg?"

Oh, come on. You know the rules round here. A headline needs only have a passing resemblance to the article's content.

In this case the resemblance is that nearly half of DNS queries for any of all the .io domains could have become dependent on one of the server domains he'd taken over. ISTM that that's a better than average justification for an el Reg headline and a rather alarming one at that.

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"Don't serve them. That'll get you a call back quick!"

According to TFA he didn't. That would mean that the query would then fall back to another server until it found one that did.

Trump to world: Forget moving to America to do a startup

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Re: If...

"At least both major political parties are equal offenders when it comes to security, so, citizen, you have no option."

Other parties are available. And please don't come back with the usual reply; your vote does count but only if you cast it.

Multics resurrected: Proto-Unix now runs on Raspberry Pi or x86

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"Honeywell 36-bit machines running GCOS (originally GECOS for General Electric)."

That also had at least a small influence on Unix: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gecos_field

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Re: Primos

We had access to a Prime run by the Home Office. Its main use was to run a Lockheed bibliography database. It was possible to write well tuned queries for that, a characteristic which Google, Amazon and eBay seem to remorselessly root out of their query engines. The responses were in the form of references to microfilms of the original papers which were supplied to the labs which used it. Elsevier would have a blue fit if that were done today. The database was written in FORTRAN; for some reason a query managed to get it to start regurgitating the source code but I never managed to get it to repeat that trick.

We also had Pascal available. I can't remember what use I made of that but I must have done. We got our Onyx Unix box a little later and I sacrificed one of the TTY ports to connect to the link to the Prime (we must have had some sort of multiplexer on the Prime link). We didn't have tip, cu or the like on the Onyx so I explored the possibilities of fork() (and, indeed C which was new to me at the time) to write a simple equivalent so I could get on to the Prime from my lab instead of having to go down to the library. If I'd just been wanting to use the Prime for a literature search I'd have had to go to the library anyway to use the microfilm.

Again, thanks for a reminder of times gone by.

GSM gateway ban U-turn casts doubt on 7.5-year prosecution in Blighty

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Re: @ alien overlord

"if he ran one of these he did break the law"

That might not be a settled matter. If the ban on a COSUG was contrary EU law it could well be that the Appeal court could make the same ruling for a COMUG were the case to be put to them. It certainly would not be in the public interest to continue the case when the ban itself has been rescinded and there's a possibility of the Court of Appeal throwing it out were it to get that far.

Judge used personal email to send out details of sensitive case

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Re: Bah!

"Drive with the tax disc out."

Tax disc?

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Re: Weird

"Most people who have a domain name use the rubbish mail that is given as a freebie as part of the hosting package."

My previous comment applies. There is nothing at all in the article to say that this is the sort of service being used here.

"I rest my case"

I haven't seen you produce anything that resembles a case worth resting.

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The draft judgement is maybe more of a worry than the final judgement unless the latter was sent out with some extra comment. After all, the judgement is a matter of public record.

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Re: "Internet e-mail is not a secure medium..."

"So, what sort of e-mail do I need to use?"


Local mail account on a Unix server?


How quickly we forget that email existed before there was an internet protocol for it.

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Re: Weird

"Sending an email using his sons crappy mail server"

Gordon, I'm glad you're not a judge as you seem to be unable to limit your conclusions to the evidence.

The article said it was a domain owned by the son. Owning a domain does not mean you run the server. Many of us own out own domains* but that doesn't mean we run the servers; it's possible to buy that as a service. Secondly, even if the son owned his own server there's still no evidence that it was crappy. For all we know the son might be running a mail service provider.

*It's a useful means of controlling spam - we can use it to issue temporary addresses or addresses specific to a particular company with whom we do business. Owning your own domain is also a good idea if you're running a business; $companyname.co.uk looks so much more businesslike than $companyname@yahoo.co.uk.

Microsoft drops Office 365 for biz. Now it's just Microsoft 365. Word

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" I can't use LibreOffice on everything as we have some iPads, and LibreOffice is, I think, GPL3 and so ain't ever gonna be in the Apple Store."

Collabora on Nextcloud?

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"The drone had no clue about MS 365, but could cough up a phone number. I haven't had time to call it. I will. This should be interesting."

Hope springs eternal.

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Re: As if they didn't have enough

"Subscription Katalogue Units"

I read that as "Subscription Kafkesque Units".

Former GCHQ boss backs end-to-end encryption

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Undoubtedly bodies such as GCHQ know what May & Rudd want, i.e. the govt only back door, is nonsense. They also know that they're not going to be any better off with a bigger haystack. And they probably realise the drastic consequences of the politicians' shopping list of entitled agencies getting their hands on surveillance. But they also know that any words of wisdom from themselves will fall/have frequently fallen on deaf ears and their conditions of service prevent them going public.

What I'd really like is someone who's sufficiently lost their rag to retire and go public to the extent of saying "I've told these idiots time after time but they're just too stupid to understand.".

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Re: "Oops, we voted for them :("

"If you live in the UK you voted for the party that appointed the current Home Secretary."

That, sir, is a libel.

There seems to be an odd notion about that because a (possibly slender) majority voted for something or someone then everyone must have done.

It's the same mode of thinking that enables Brexiteers to assume that the whole country voted for their madcap idea. They had a slender majority and it's very doubtful that if the referendum were to be repeated they'd actually achieve any majority at whole and yet they and, it seems, almost all the HoC are acting as if they have the entire country behind them.

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"I think you'll find that the opposition is also largely in favour of this nonsense."

One didn't have to vote for them either.

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"Oops, we voted for them"

Speak for yourself. I told my MP that I wouldn't be prepared to vote for him as long as May remained in charge. She has, I didn't. He isn't.

Trump backs off idea for joint US/Russian 'impenetrable Cyber Security unit'

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"Modern Presidential behaviour"

Maybe behaviour should have had a capital inital as well. MPB could be a useful abbreviation.

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Re: What a f@#$ing rube

"I hit "downvote" a bunch of times but it didn't work after the first one."

I'm sure we can provide you with a few spares.

Hard Rock hotels burgered up by Sabre breach

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Hypothetical musing

From next May, if an EU citizen's personal data were to be leaked by a PoS in the US would GDPR apply? After all, the US want their laws to apply here so why shouldn't ours apply there?

Is this a hotdog? What it takes for an AI to answer that might surprise you

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"Being in tech means you are naturally fascinated by the new. "

And being in tech long enough reminds you that the old is new again.

Largest advertising company in the world still wincing after NotPetya punch

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"the board can point the finger at $OUTSOURCER and deny responsibility."

And when it comes to court the court under GDPR will point the finger right back where it belongs. Or if it's something that affects financial performance the market will also hold the company responsible and amend its share price accordingly. You can't outsource responsibility.

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Re: How and Why?

"Accounting software gets updated as frequently as the taxation system changes, so at minimum once a year."

At a minimum indeed. Because if it's supplying companies trading in multiple countries there may be a whole raft of taxk changes happening at different times of the year.

But this is best done by keeping the executables as stable as possible and pushing the changes to tax rates as data, preferably human readable text data.

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Re: Worlds largest advertising company?!?

"Ad agencies are also known as creative agencies"

To themselves and their clients. To the rest of us they're known as pests.

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Re: Local admin rights

"Why on earth does an accounting application require local admin rights other than perhaps for installations?"

Because it's Windows and that sort of thing happens there.

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Re: Good practice

"sell shit to the victim at the lowest possible price"

Which, given the victim in this case, explains why the commentariat regards this with more than a touch of schadenfreude.

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"but then they themselves always were the only idiots to believe anything they say"

No, their clients believe what they (the advertising industry) say.

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Re: It us just you

Obviously not all of the +205k staff are British but a good number are.

Some of us have problems associating "good" with members of the pestering industry. That's part of the reason that Ledswinger's post got so many upvotes and fnusnu's got so many downvotes.

Web inventor Sir Tim sizes up handcuffs for his creation – and world has 2 weeks to appeal

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"You say ransom, I say purchase."

Fine, but those who purchase something want something they can keep. Big Content tries to sell the same thing over and over again, rather like prostitution.

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Re: Sir Tim is 62

"Yes, I'm proposing Communism"

No, you're not.

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Re: @AC "easy to copy"

Maybe it would be worth it for a college student who doesn't want to pay $200 for a textbook, but for a $9.99 paperwork, no way.

If the publisher were to sell their textbooks in paperback form they might sell more. Even without copying the $200 textbook is apt to be sold second-hand and third-hand if $200 is overpriced for its market.

Copying unprotected digital data on the other hand requires no investment of time or money. Well, unless you want to KEEP copies of every book you read and every movie you see!

Errm. What about people who simply want to keep copies of every book and movie they've PAID for?

There is a huge difference here, and it is silly to pretend that difference does not exist.

You've given examples of the supply side trying to manipulate the market. Don't be surprised if the demand side demands the right to respond in like manner. If vendors receive legal protection they should also be regulated to prevent them abusing that protection; at present this isn't the case.

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Re: Mixed feelings

"But on the other hand I reluctantly accept that this is the only model that intellectual monopolists will ever use to sell their wares, and if we actually want their "nice things" then we are forced to obtain them on their terms."

Trade is a matter of bargaining. If providers want to well to us then they have to deal with our terms. Success happens when a common set of terms can be agreed on by both sides.

The ongoing problem that Big Content has experienced has come from their trying to manipulate markets - segmentation by country etc. They have been very slow to grasp the idea that that doesn't work in the modern world.

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