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Discussions

sysrpl sysrpl
  • Chromecast

    Plex media software now has Chromecast support. Here is a recent demo:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yXTQN-IXxQ

  • The world's hardest riddle

    I turn polar bears white
    and I will make you cry.
    I make guys have to pee
    and girls comb their hair.
    I make celebrities look stupid
    and normal people look like celebrities.
    I turn pancakes brown
    and make your champane bubble.
    If you squeeze me, I'll pop.
    If you look at me, you'll pop.
    Can you guess the riddle?

    97% of Harvard graduates can not figure this riddle out, but 84% of kindergarten students were able to figure this out in 6 minutes or less. Can you guess the correct answer? Just repost this bulletin with the title "The World's Hardest Riddle", and then check your inbox. You'll get a message with the correct answer in it. Good luck!

    I believe the answer is NO! The last line in the riddle says "Can you guess the riddle? and most kindergartens would answer no.

  • XKeyscore - Screen shots of NSA search tools

    Here is more information regarding XKeyscore from a top secret presentation created in 2008:

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/interactive/2013/jul/31/nsa-xkeyscore-program-full-presentation

    It would seem that the NSA likes searching your word and excel documents, especially if you do something suspicious like use encryption. 

  • XKeyscore - Screen shots of NSA search tools

    Edward Snowden via Glen Greenwald shed more light today on what he meant when he said given an email address he could wiretap anyone:

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jul/31/nsa-top-secret-program-online-data

    What's interesting here is seeing the actual NSA analyst search forms which are simple browser based applications. An analyst fills out a keyword, email address or website name (wildcards can be used) and select a search reason from a limited drop list, then clicks "submit" and he/she can find out a whole lot about you. This includes your web browsing history, online chats, emails, locations you've logging in from. All this is done without a warrant.

    Discuss

  • NSA Spying Program

    @evildictaitor:

    United Kingdom (check)

    Devil's Advocate (check)

  • NSA Spying Program

    @dahat: Yeah, not to mention how costly it all is (1.7 billion for their new data warehouse). I guess what they are doing is continuing to improve their software and just storing everything off (which is why they need the new facility) until they get their software to the point where it can be parsed (pattern recognition) more intelligently.

    One thing is for sure, the government really wants to hold on to all this data (US citizens email, voice/video/text chat, photos, contents of cloud storage accounts like S3 skydrive google drive, video conferences, and social network activity details).

  • NSA Spying Program

    @evildictaitor: Are you sure that analysts running queries only go through business records? How? Are you sure software doesn't search through other records when a query is run? How? Are you overseeing all the software contractors are writing to which manages the massive amounts of private US citizens communication data cataloged every day by the NSA? Private US citizens communication data which is being stored possibly forever.

    Is your reason for trusting this data in the hands of the government and private for profit contractor is that it would against the law to parse that data (by human or computer means), and they won't break the law because they are such good guys? Or is it because Congress understands computer systems so well (Ted Stevens series of tubes anyone) along with the heads of government agencies and they have already explained everything is okay and there is nothing illegal happening?

    Or would it be more fair to say not everyone knows exactly what the NSA software does (even within the NSA). Or that people who actually worked with the NSA databases like Snowden, or the three ex-NSA officials who went on the record yesterday ...

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/06/16/snowden-whistleblower-nsa-officials-roundtable/2428809/

    ... actually might be blowing the whistle on illegal (but not against policy) activity?

    I am not sure, but how about this ... we stop letting the worst day America has had in fifty years (9/11) dictate what liberties we ignore for the next two decades. We can allow our most vulnerable panicked moment to justify almost anything (like we have been doing), or we can do the right thing: Take a step back, reconsider, and make decisions which help rather than suspect everyone.

  • NSA Spying Program

    @spivonious: More people die each year the hands of police than by terrorism. More people die each year by slipping in the bathroom than by terrorism.

  • NSA Spying Program

    @evildictaitor: The director of the clandestine government agency in charge of espionage (or spying) isn't exactly the proper person to ask for the truth. After all, deception is what they're trained to do.

    The Director of National Intelligence was caught lying to congress on this topic just last week 

    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/intel-dir-james-clapper-lie-congress-complicated/story?id=19390786#.UcCuz6BQl38

    But to the point, the Carnivore program, which was renamed DCS1000 in order to sound more benign to the public, did and does exactly that. It filters Internet packets and looking for email headers and then copies off that data. That process in itself is reading your email.

    And finally you also misstated what was communicated. Alexander didn't say that a warrant was needed to search their data as you claimed. Here is what was explained in the article you linked:

    "But then he says the NSA can do pattern analysis – just not until a query is active. It is unclear how wide the analysis can go based on any individual query."

    And queries are run all the time. They do not need a warrant or any other order to run them (it's up to the discretion of the analyst):

    http://www.politico.com/story/2013/06/dianne-feinstein-nsa-92760.html?hp=f2

  • NSA Spying Program

    I've been thinking about a question which has been burning itself in my brain for a while and have to ask somewhere, so I guess this is a good of a place as any.

    Why, in all the current NSA spying programs talk among our leaders (elected federal officals) and among all the well schooled journalists across america, is no one is discussing the NSA splitting closets installed at key Internet backbone endpoints across the USA?

    These closets located in rooms inside of big privately owned (AT&T) Internet switching centers are under lock and key of the NSA and contain equipment which receives a split copy of the Internet traffic of flowing through these key Internet junctions. There are quite a few of these closets and they've been installed for a while (at least six years, possibly more).

    http://www.wired.com/science/discoveries/news/2006/04/70619

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Room_641A

    And with the recent talk of the NSA Prism program, government leaders, journalists, and private business (Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook) claim that only a small amount of data is handed  over to the NSA. What, what, what? 

    Why do the afore mentioned groups continually fail to mentioned the huge pile of data copied directly at Internet junctions which is parsed and sent to NSA server farms? Then NSA contractors write software to search through and categorize all this data. Why do these people think they need to build a huge new data facility in Utah?

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/14/nsa-utah-data-facility

    Because they are running of space to store all this data, obviously. Do they really think that the NSA needs a new multibillion dollar facility just to store phone numbers, and times? No, they are storing a lot more data than that. The FBI's Carnivore program (which attempts to siphon off and store Internet emails with content and attachment) still exists, just under a different name and is operated by a Boeing subsidiary.

    And finally, putting the phone issue aside to say no one is looking or reading at your email or your Internet text/voice chats, this is very disingenuous. This is a weasel way of hiding what is almost certainly being done. Yes, no one human being at the NSA is reading your emails and chats, that is the job for their custom software running at their server farms. Just because a machine reads your conversations rather than a human doesn't make it any less illegal.