Autonomous Robotic Weapons

We already have some highly sophisticated weapons systems that use computer technology and electronics to do things on a battlefield undreamed of even a few decades ago.  This does include robotic weapons systems.  The important ingredient in all this tech is the presence of human control.  At this point in time it still takes a human to drive these war machines.

But we are not the far from being able to create ...

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Is Phone Phreaking Still A Thing? Recent FBI Arrest Says Yes

Phone phreaking refers to the exploration of phone systems and networks to discover how they work.  It also refers to the exploitation of telephone lines and systems in order to make free long distance calls.   Like the term “hacking,” it can refer to both the curious and the criminal.

Time to climb into Mr Peabody’s WABAC Machine for our history lesson.  Phone phreaking got its start in the ...

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Who Is The Real Inventor of Blockchain?

It is widely believed that Satoshi Nakamoto is the inventor of an encryption technique called “blockchain.”  I just read a new book by Sarah Westall titled “FIRST: Meet the Inventor of Blockchain” that credits Dr Kelce Wilson as the true inventor of blockchain, a concept he developed between 2000 and 2001 while serving in ...

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FBI + Geek Squad = Illegal Search

When I was a self-employed computer repair professional, it used to drive me mad when I got called in on a repair AFTER the customer had taken the computer to the Geek Squad.  Their service could be highly variable, and often the original problem was not fixed.

The Geek Squad started as a great little local IT shop founded in Minneapolis by Robert Stephens, ...

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Current Events Round-up

Seems to be a busy summer so far.  Barely finished up with WannaCry and now we are dealing with Petya.  Here are some useful links

About Petya:

I have followed with great interest the ...

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Another Lottery Scammer Nabbed by the Feds

We have reported previously about Operation Hard Copy.  This is from the US Department of Justice: The US Marshall’s Service arrested another member of the North Dakota lottery scam in Jamaica recently.

“United States Attorney Chris Myers announced today, that the U.S. Marshals Service, working with Jamaican law enforcement, has located and apprehended another man charged with participating in an international organized crime advance fee “lottery scam” which defrauded at least 90 mostly ...

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Compliance is not Security

I am often asked to explain the difference between a security compliance audit, a vulnerability assessment, and a penetration test.  These exercises do many of the same things, but to a different degree.  A security compliance audit is like a 5K fun run, where a vulnerabilty assessment is more like a marathon.  A penetration test is an iron man competition.

In the course of ...

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Tax Dollars At Work: FTC and US-CERT Resources for SMBs

US-CERT sent an announcement on May 9th about new resources for small and medium size business owners and managers.  Protecting Small Businesses can be found on the FTC website.  It includes information about:

  • Protecting your business from scams
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data breach response
  • Protecting personal information

There are also helpful videos about:

  • Building security into software development
  • Controlling access to data
  • Defending against ransomware
  • Fraud
  • Data ...
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Report and Recover from Identity Theft with New FTC Service

Identity theft is a crime that can take years to recover from.  One of the early problems for an identity theft victim has been the requirement to file a police report.  Many police departments do not devote much effort to identity theft, so sometimes getting the police to actually create a report and provide you with a report number can difficult.  If the ...

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