Tag Archives | Security

Security by Hunter S. Thompson


Security by Hunter S. Thompson

Security … What does this word mean in relation to life as we know it today? For the most part, it means safety and freedom from worry. It is said to be the end that all men strive for; but is security a utopian goal or is it another word for rut?

Let us visualize the secure man; and by this term, I mean a man who has settled for financial arid personal security for his goal in life. In general, he is a man who has pushed ambition and initiative aside and settled down, so to speak, in a boring, but safe and comfortable rut for the rest of his life. His future is but an extension of his present, and he accepts it as such with a complacent shrug of his shoulders. His ideas and ideals are those of society in general and he is accepted as a respectable, but average and prosaic man.… Read the rest

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How to Deal with a Burglar While You’re Home

A burglary occurs every 15 seconds in the United States, proving that break-ins are all too commonplace in this day and age. You can’t even turn on the news at night without seeing stories about multiple home invasions. So, how are people handling this nightmarish situation?

Despite taking great precautions on a daily/nightly basis, everyone is vulnerable to a break in at some point. You never want to believe something as terrifying and invasive as a burglary could happen to you, and who could blame you? The unfortunate truth is that this can occur at any moment.


No matter how protected your home may be, there’s usually still a risk of a break in. Image by Wetsun.

While just getting your home broken into is enough to rattle your cage, what if you’re in your home when it happens? Your adrenaline begins pumping and your instincts take hold. It can be easy to let emotional reactions affect your decision making when something like this happens.… Read the rest

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How To Navigate A Data Leak

r2hox (CC BY-SA 2.0)

r2hox (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Welcome to the 21st century. The age of the Data Leak and web security breaches galore. Virtually no website is secure from determined data-miners and hackers alike. On Tuesday, user info (including addresses and partial credit card numbers) was leaked from the site Ashley Madison and has left the web and real world in an uproar. The leak came in two parts. Another info drop was made yesterday and seems to be info from the website owners and internal site goings-on, supposedly including internal site emails.

Very little of our internet deeds or misdeeds are truly secure. This is the era of leaked celebrity nudes, internal email breaches, and security insecurity. For those in the know, it’s easy enough to “cover” your tracks online through a series of email accounts and a few pre-paid credit cards, but on the whole, most people do not go through that much trouble to hide their actions online.… Read the rest

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Security is Not a Crime—Unless You’re an Anarchist


Jannes Pockele (CC BY 2.0)

Nadia Kayyali and Kattza Rodriguez write at Electronic Frontier Foundation:

Riseup, a tech collective that provides security-minded communications to activists worldwide, sounded the alarm last month when a judge in Spain stated that the use of their email service is a practice, he believes, associated with terrorism.

Javier Gómez Bermúdez is a judge of Audiencia Nacional, a special high court in Spain that deals with serious crimes such as terrorism and genocide. According to press reports, he ordered arrest warrants that were carried out on December 16th against alleged members of an anarchist group. The arrests were part of Operation Pandora, a coordinated campaign against “anarchist activity” that has been called an attempt  “to criminalize anarchist social movements.” The police seized books, cell phones, and computers, and arrested 11 activists. Few details are known about the situation, since the judge has declared the case secret.

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Secret Manuals Show the Spyware Sold to Despots and Cops Worldwide

elhombredenegro (CC By 2.0)

elhombredenegro (CC By 2.0)

via First Look:

When Apple and Google unveiled new encryption schemes last month, law enforcement officials complained that they wouldn’t be able to unlock evidence on criminals’ digital devices. What they didn’t say is that there are already methods to bypass encryption, thanks to off-the-shelf digital implants readily available to the smallest national agencies and the largest city police forces — easy-to-use software that takes over and monitors digital devices in real time, according to documents obtained by The Intercept.

We’re publishing in full, for the first time, manuals explaining the prominent commercial implant software “Remote Control System,” manufactured by the Italian company Hacking Team. Despite FBI director James Comey’s dire warnings about the impact of widespread data scrambling — “criminals and terrorists would like nothing more,” he declared — Hacking Team explicitly promises on its website that its software can “defeat encryption.”

Read More: https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/30/hacking-team/

Sign up for the disinformation newsletter to get weekly updates with our most popular stories and news.… Read the rest

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WikiLeaks Spy Files


via wikileaks.org/the-spyfiles

via Wikileaks Spy Files:

In early September 2014 WikiLeaks released its last batch of leaked Spy Files –  which it had started releasing in 2011. To mark this anniversary, data journalist Alice Corona cleaned and structured the data to build an interactive database combining the three Spy Files releases.

Currently, there are 559 leaked company documents, and 15 location tracking reports from WikiLeaks Counter Intelligence Unit (WLCIU). The 559 files disclose to the public internal documents from more than 100 companies specialized in intelligence and (mass) surveillance technologies.

These technologies are sold both to Western governments and to dictators, and have been used by the Syrian government. The 15 documents from WLCIU reveal the timestamps and locations of 20 members of these companies, whose whereabouts WikiLeaks has decided to track in order to show where the main surveillance contractors are sending its people. But what does the Spy Files database actually contain?

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5 Million Gmail Account Passwords Were Leaked


You can check to see if yours was leaked here: https://isleaked.com/en.php (or you could just change your password for good measure!) Note that you will probably get a Bad Gateway error, but I think that’s because so many people are checking. If you keep trying, you will eventually get through.

I checked mine and it was leaked, but the password is an old one that I haven’t used in awhile (which seems to be the case for a lot of people).

via The Mary Sue:

Almost 5 million Gmail addresses and their passwords have been compromised and leaked on a Russian Bitcoin forum. Admins on the forum have removed the passwords from the text file, but the Internet is forever, so if your username is among those that have been hacked, you should change your password immediately.

Luckily, there’s a quick tool you can use to figure out if your account information was leaked.

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How The NSA hacks your devices

NSA-octopusFrom The Register:

“It’s not as bad as you thought – it’s much worse.”

A leaked NSA cyber-arms catalog has shed light on the technologies US and UK spies use to infiltrate and remotely control PCs, routers, firewalls, phones and software from some of the biggest names in IT.

The exploits, often delivered via the web, provide clandestine backdoor access across networks, allowing the intelligence services to carry out man-in-the-middle attacks that conventional security software has no chance of stopping.

And if that fails, agents can simply intercept your hardware deliveries from Amazon to install hidden gadgets that rat you out via radio communications.

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From North America to Europe, the ‘National Security’ Apparatus Is Being Bought off by Big Oil t

Pic: Quevaal (CC)

Pic: Quevaal (CC)

And here I thought I was a centrist.  Nafeez Ahmed writes at the Guardian:

Over the last year, a mass of shocking evidence has emerged on the close ties between Western government spy agencies and giant energy companies, and their mutual interests in criminalising anti-fracking activists.

Activists tarred with the same brush

In late 2013, official documents obtained under freedom of information showed that Canada’s domestic spy agency, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), had ramped up its surveillance of activists opposed to the Northern Gateway pipeline project on ‘national security’ grounds. The CSIS also routinely passed information about such groups to the project’s corporate architect, Calgary-based energy company, Enbridge.

The Northern Gateway is an $8 billion project to transport oil from the Alberta tar sands to the British Columbia coast, where it can be shipped to global markets. According to the documents a Canadian federal agency, the National Energy Board, worked with CSIS and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to coordinate with Enbridge, TransCanada, and other energy corporations in gathering intelligence on anti-fracking activists – despite senior police privately admitting they “could not detect a direct or specific criminal threat.”

Now it has emerged that former cabinet minister Chuck Strahl – the man appointed by Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper to head up the CSIS’ civilian oversight panel, the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) – has been lobbying for Enbridge since 2011.

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TSA: What Is it Good For?

The-Simpsons-vs-the-TSA(TSA) isn’t as effective at detecting suspicious characters as one might think. The Government Accounting Office (GAO) has reviewed the TSA’s Screening Passengers by Observation Techniques (SPOT) program was evaluated at being “the same or slightly better than chance.”

The SPOT program since 2007 cost $900 million. The TSA has failed to collect consistent data to prove the effectiveness of the behavioral detection program; worse yet, the SPOT program was initiated without any scientific validation. For reason, the GAO has recommended that Congress cut off funding to this program, something that the Department of Homeland Security disagrees with.

You think that’s bad? That’s only the tip of the damning iceberg.

Anti-TSA activist Johnathan Corbett, who filed a lawsuit against the agency on the faulty nature of their body scanners found a particularly revealing document that declares the probability of terrorists hijacking planes in the United States.

VIA TechDirt

Jonathan Corbett, a long-time vocal critic of TSA body scanners, has been engaged in a lawsuit against the government concerning the constitutionality of those scanners.

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