* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16449 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

As GDPR draws close, ICANN suggests 12 conflicting ways to cure domain privacy pains

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Companies House, anyone?

"Is there an exemption for the functioning of government ?"

Yes, providing, as you say, it's a statutory function. HMG seem to be trying to slip in some extra exemption in the current bill. If they get it through the Commons I can see a quick trip to the ECJ while there's still time. It would be pretty daft of them to do this if it ends up by costing equivalence post-Brexit.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: On GDPR...

"Somewhere in those terms and conditions is a legalese set of terms to allow them to do whatever they want with your data."

If so they should have taken better legal advice because that is an infringement in itself. And would probably be looked on as a basis for a bigger fine.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: A job application...

"2 downvotes for being rude about ICANN."

Never mind. Have an upvote despite your expressed tolerance of over-priced fizzy drinks. Just stick to the 50-year old hard stuff.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"There is a complete absence of thorough worked examples for many scenarios."

What makes you think that there should be? The ICO don't know your business or your systems. The legislation is there. You need to look at how your business is affected by it, just like any other piece of legislation. Would you, for instance, expect a thorough worked example of how to fit fire doors to your premises so you could comply with legislation on fire protection?

Corpse! of! Yahoo! drags! emails! of! the! dead! case! to! US! Supreme! Court!

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"I'm a dinosaur, and therefore I use discrete email clients"

Thee & me alike. But getting access shouldn't be impossible for nearest & dearest providing you didn't encrypt the hard drive. Just take it out & mount it in another box. It doesn't require a trip to court. There's always a downside to "convenience". Security is one. Inconvenience when you need something out of the ordinary is another.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

This assumes that the email was left on the mail provider's servers. Why? It's just open to abuse by anyone with access, legal or otherwise to the server. Download, delete from server, delete or save locally as appropriate. Backup as appropriate.

You want it on multiple devices? Copy it to multiple devices.

Secret weekend office bonk came within inch of killing sysadmin

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: And sometimes the flood is concrete

It's just as well it only leaked into the relay room. Just think how much concrete they'd have poured in if they'd tried to fill the entire Victoria line.

Digital version of Universal Credit still pricey, wobbly, failing to deliver – MPs

Doctor Syntax Silver badge


"n seems to me that the Universal Credit cock-ups all serve to add weight to the argument in favour of Universal Basic Income."

Really? Who'd be responsible for it? The same people who are responsible for UC. That alone should guarantee it would never get off the ground.

TalkTalk to splash £1.5bn laying full fibre on 3 million doorsteps

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Would it not be better to force providers to upgrade or install in areas where the others are not operating first?"

Then it wouldn't happen. If they can't pick the areas where they reckon they have best RoI they won't do it.

Austrian privacy chief handed leash to EU's data protection beast

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: It's a regulation

"However that does not stop states creating legislation that goes further than an EU regulation"

There was an article here a week or so ago about the EU getting at upset that countries hadn't adopted it yet: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/01/25/eu_gdpr_infringement_procedure/

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"if after brexit we are no longer under the ECJ then who is going to issue fines in the UK under the GDPR and if it's an EU related issue how will they collect from a UK company without any legal options?"

The GDPR has to be implemented in local legislation in each country. That's why there's a new Data Protection Bill going through Parliament now. When it received Royal Assent it will become the new Data Protection Act. Like the others, the ICO will be the body in day-to-day charge. The ECJ doesn't come into it. This will be the situation from this May and unless a subsequent govt. tinkers with it it'll remain. Any govt would be mad to tinker with it except in one specific circumstance because it would greatly harm all manner of trade with the EU, or at least such as survives Brexit.

The one circumstance is that the EU changes or replaces GDPR in which case we'll have to make parallel changes without having had any input into the EU process. It's called "taking back control".

MPs: Lack of technical skills for Brexit could create 'damaging, unmanageable muddle'

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hmm


You need to add two more:

C The Irish border will not be moved to the middle of the Irish sea.

D The DUP will continue to prop up HMG.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hmm

"Them spineless bastards wouldnt dare build one themselves and it is better for the Irish not to have a border."

So how is this issue going to be handled? Any hint that the border moves to the Irish Sea and the Home Sec of Downing St will be visiting HM to ask for a dissolution of Parliament.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hmm

"So the EU's opening- you will pay X Euro (X being a moving number often calculated by laughter), EU courts over EU citizens remaining in the UK (more laughter) and the EU want a wall and the UK will pay for it (think of trump as you say it and so even more laughter). And that is before they are willing to negotiate."

Beggars can't be choosers. Did you think any different. That doesn't just apply to negotiating with the EU, BTW. It applies to negotiating all these supposedly wonderful trade deals with the rest of the world.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hmm

"it doesn't matter how small and agile government is if you don't have a clear driection on where to go you won't get there."

Nor does it help if where you want to go isn't accessible.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hmm

"We voted out"

Slightly more than half of those who voted did. That means less than half didn't. In an advisory referendum. So instead of doing the sensible thing and starting a feasibility study the govt rushed head first (a few months is a head first rush in govt terms) into triggering Article 50 without even thinking about what the due process was until their arm was twisted. Then they discovered that as supplicants negotiating is a lot harder than they thought even though that should have been obvious.

In a couple of years time your going to be hard pressed to find anyone who'll claim admit to having voted Leave.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Well Duh!

"Not changing the spec every week/day/hour."

For anything Brexit related the real spec isn't going to exist until well into next year. What, if anything, is presented as a spec is going to vary wildly depending on which wing of the party (and anyone else) ministers are trying to placate this week - or just today.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Anti-competitive?

"Well, anything we can source more cheaply elsewhere, we will - there's mostly no chance of us simply producing it ourselves - we'll simply change where in the world our money goes."

"Simply" is probably an exaggeration. If the only existing component is for some product is sourced in the EU then going elsewhere might involve a redesign. And that's not including the more convoluted supply chains where stuff goes backward & forward.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Clueless on everything

"Yep can negotiate, they just cant come into force until we leave the EU."

You're probably right on this one. Negotiate, yes. Succeed when everyone knows we're over a barrel?* It depends on the definition of succeed.

*The same applies to negotiating leave terms. Apparently nobody told HMG that beggars can't be choosers.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Clueless on everything

"Same as always. Staying in power."

And, same as always, failing.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Do they think they can finish doing that the week before B-Day and then flick a switch to put the new programs in place?"


Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"we just don't follow them"

We can't. We don't have the IT in place.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: But it will be worth it

"The MPs don't need to worry about the local elections."

Although not necessarily reliable they're pointers to what the electorate is thinking. MPs must already be looking a few years a head, even without the prospect of the DUP throwing a wobbly and there being another general election shortly afterwards. They'll be worrying.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: But it will be worth it

"And we'll be getting blue passports."

We'll need them to escape.

CLOUD Act hits Senate to lube up US access to data stored abroad

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

These include a motion to quash or modify the legal process if it believes the customer isn't a US citizen and that disclosure "creates a material risk" that the firm would violate the laws of another government.

Who's going to be responsible for this? If it's the data subject they're not going to be told until after the event if at all. Even then it means having to defend themselves in the US when they live elsewhere.

I see you're writing a résumé?!.. LinkedIn parked in MS Word

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Assuming this is running on the corporate Office 365 it can also email your manager/HR drone or whoever that you're looking for a job.

MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Sending it Mars?

The real trick would have been to have brought it back and parked it on his drive.

Assange fails to make skipped bail arrest warrant vanish

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Re: A Flagrant Rotten Denial of Justice and a Blot in the UKGBNI Landscape

"Surely the fact that he is still being persecuted/prosecuted long after removal of disputed facts, is grounds enough for reasonable cause that justice has not and is not being served and servered by judges?"

Skipping bail is an offence in its own right. The magistrate lays out the law quite clearly in the judgement.

Ghost in the DCL shell: OpenVMS, touted as ultra reliable, had a local root hole for 30 years

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Wasn't VMS...

"Interesting to note the parallels with the downfall of Sun"

There seem to be parallels with HP and IBM as well. It seems to be a management anti-pattern.

UK Home Office grilled over biometrics, being clingy with folks' mugshots

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Home Office bods have denied that retaining millions of custody images of people who were never charged falls foul of case law, while asserting that automatic deletion is not technically possible."

No problem. Just delete the lot. If they can't do it whilst keeping within the law they shouldn't do it at all.

Insurance companies now telling you what tech to buy with um-missable price signals

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Re: Definition of an actuary

" Love Actuary."

You should be ashamed of yourself. Have an upvote.

South Wales cops crow about facial recognition arrests on social media

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"luckily these types all dress in the same uniform."

And wear DMs on their feet.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: @Lee D

"however you look at it this stuff is cheap!"

And worth what you paid for it - ~10p a go in the example you gave.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Nobody much complains about human Police spotters identifying trouble makers at football matches. So is this just luddite objections?"

I have no experience of Police spotters at football matches as I've assiduously avoided football for my entire adult life. So I'm open to contradiction in this. But as I understand the comment spotters would be looking for known individuals who shouldn't be there. If that's the case then their visual identifications would be subject to more robust checks on identification. If automatic facial recognition is being applied to the lousy images from typical CCTV as the only evidence then it's far from being a Luddite objection. The initial ID, human or AI, needs to be tested and distrusted until it's tested. A violent arrest as in the Denver case linked above really shouldn't be conducted on the basis of such ID.

It's really like the blood test kits we used to give to SOCO - and used in the lab as well. The technical term was a presumptive test (it worked by detecting peroxidase activity which haemoglobin shares with several other substances such as fruit juice). The presumptive test highlights something to be followed up to decide not only is it's blood but also what species.

Facial ID seems to be at the presumptive level - useful to tell you what's worth looking at but too liable to give false positives to be used solo.

I see from the linked article that the FBI have ditched hair evidence. I never could understand why they were keen on it. It always seems hopeless. In 14 years I only ever used it once and that was to give an ID of a body where there were 3 alternatives; fortunately I could exclude 2 as couldn't be and that left one that could have been.

No, Windows 10 hasn’t beaten Windows 7’s market share. Not for sure, anyway

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"the headline percentage of UK exports to the EU has gone down"

The main nonsense in this is that the UK doesn't export to the EU. The EU is part of the home market. It's a hell of a chunk of the home market to be losing and the Home Sec of Downing St has just said that that's what's going to happen. Of course as soon as she needs to placate the other wing of her party or Ireland she'll say something else.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: MS is not the one to worry here

"For business, you can also buy a PC without an OS license."

And not just for business. In the UK PC Specialist will sell PCs without OS to anyone.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: StatCounter = irrelevant, amateurish

"This would skew the stats."

It will also skew the stats against people who don't download and run random bits of Javascript. In fact use the things which will skew the stats about users showing up on Statcounter will be expected to show some correlation with use of blocking the enforced W7 > W10 downgrade.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: And they were so close...

"And you cant make sites that require IE automatically select it like you can in Edge."

Are you seriously suggesting that even considering using sites that require IE shouldn't be a sacking offence?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: "No in place updates for you!"

"Not with Windows you don't - it updates on the fly."

You wrote that as if it were a good thing. A lot of users seem to disagree.

You've only gone and committed to becoming cloud native

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Where do you start?"

With a letter of resignation.

Lauri Love judgment: Extradition would be 'oppressive' and breach forum bar

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"its not as bad as everyone on here makes it out to be. I think you all have watched The Shawshank" etc.

If you want people to read what you write do the work of starting sentences with capital letters. If you can't be arsed to take that amount of care in writing why should I be arsed to put in the extra effort to read it.

Paragraphs are useful too.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: tin foil hat

US is only trying to stave off other idiots (i.e. warmongers) from trying to hack into their systems so they need to make an example of each one fix their piss-poor security.


Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Justice ?

"Charging him in the UK would require evidence which the US does not need to supply for an extradition."

Whether it needed to supply evidence or not, look at the judgement; link in TFA. There's a brief summary of evidence in paragraph 9. It includes the mention of the fact that some of the evidence was gathered in the UK. And look at paragraph 126 where the judges bat the whole thing back at the CPS & US to provide a full case for a prosecution.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Sympathy

"However, given that he has not been prosecuted here"

This case was essentially about where. Without that being settled it's irrelevant to go on about him not having been prosecuted here. Follow the link to the judgement & make your way to no 126. Th paraphrase it for you the judges are telling the CPS to get their finger out with a Uk prosecution and the US to put up or shut up - all in legal language, of course.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: The argument makes me sick

"USA will simply has to wait until we are finished with him"

Careful there, you're into double jeopardy territory. It's one jurisdiction or the other for a give set of events, not both.

GCHQ unit claims it has 'objectively' made the UK a less desirable target to cybercrims

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Good stuff

" I also know some of the guys on the ground there."

So and anonymous poster says guys he says he knows but can't or won't name are doing good work.

Convincing. Really convincing.

Accused Brit hacker Lauri Love will NOT be extradited to America

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

If they're trying to extradite from here, then ALL they need to do is to SAY that they have evidence sufficient to generate "reasonable suspicion" (without presenting it), and in the absence of unusual circumstances (as, fortunately, in this case), that is enough for us to bend over, and take it from behind.

The later Register article has a link to the judgement. Paragraph 9 outlines the evidence which seems to point to there being a prima facie case with some of the evidence coming from the UK police:

In October 2013, the Federal Bureau of Investigation asked the National Crime

Agency [“NCA”] for assistance in its investigation, which led the NCA to begin its

own investigation. Its purpose was to “gather evidence with a view to mounting a

potential prosecution in the UK, whilst being equally aware of the US investigation,

should material relevant to their investigation become apparent....” The investigation

obtained evidence linking Mr Love to the hacking offences. On 25 October 2013, the

NCA executed a search warrant at Mr Love’s parents’ house. He lived there with

them. This is explained in the witness statement of Mr Brown of the NCA dated 29

March 2016, made in connection with proceedings which related to the return of

property taken during the search. One of Mr Love’s computers was logged on to an

online chat room using the nickname “nsh”. A preliminary review of some of his

computers revealed that some of the data stolen during unauthorised access was on his

computers, and these intrusions had been discussed in online chats. Mr Love was

arrested on suspicion for offences under the Computer Misuse Act 1990, made no

comment in interview and was released on bail.

Reading through the rest of the judgement it seems clear that a UK prosecution would be a possibility and this seems to be a factor in the decision. See paragraph 126:

The CPS must now bend its endeavours to his prosecution, with the assistance to be

expected from the authorities in the United States, recognising the gravity of the

allegations in this case, and the harm done to the victims. As we have pointed out, the

CPS did not intervene to say that prosecution in England was inappropriate. If proven,

these are serious offences indeed.

In other words CPS & the US are being told to put up or shut up.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Barrister Not Present.

"And surely, one barrister not turning up, even if he was certain he was going to lose, is pretty much the definition of contempt of court?"

There'd be a junior there. In this sort of situation I'd expect it to be business as usual. Why would the leader need to be there?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Barrister Not Present.

"Wonder why this was?"

Probably he was in another court earning a fee there. Even if he'd won he wasn't going to have to get up on his hind legs and present an argument about sentencing. If he wants to appeal he will have to work out the grounds for that and it's something he'd do in chambers anyway. There'd be no reason not to just send a junior along to court.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"However the CPS require evidence that provides a reasonable probability of a solid conviction in order to proceed"

The CPS hasn't got too good a track record on requiring evidence that there's even been a crime, let alone that they've got the right person.

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