There's still "only" 21.5-million federal employees whose personnel data have been stolen, but the Office of Personnel Management now admits that they've found that the number of individuals whose fingerprints were swiped is up to 5.6 million.
Thursday, September 24, 2015
Emphasis mine. Please note, this is a very informed opinion, but still only speculation.
NOTE ABOUT JOURNALING FILESYSTEMS AND SOME RECOMMENDATIONS (JUNE 2004)
Journaling filesystems (such as Ext3 or ReiserFS) are now being used by default by most Linux distributions. No secure deletion program that does filesystem-level calls can sanitize files on such filesystems, because sensitive data and metadata can be written to the journal, which cannot be readily accessed. Per-file secure deletion is better implemented in the operating system.
Encrypting a whole partition with cryptoloop, for example, does not help very much either, since there is a single key for all the partition.
Therefore wipe is best used to sanitize a harddisk before giving it to untrusted parties (i.e. sending your laptop for repair, or selling your disk). Wiping size issues have been hopefully fixed (I apologize for the long delay).
Be aware that harddisks are quite intelligent beasts those days. They transparently remap defective blocks. This means that the disk can keep an albeit corrupted (maybe slightly) but inaccessible and unerasable copy of some of your data. Modern disks are said to have about 100% transparent remapping capacity. You can have a look at recent discussions on Slashdot.
I hereby speculate that harddisks can use the spare remapping area to secretly make copies of your data. Rising totalitarianism makes this almost a certitude. It is quite straightforward to implement some simple filtering schemes that would copy potentially interesting data. Better, a harddisk can probably detect that a given file is being wiped, and silently make a copy of it, while wiping the original as instructed.
Recovering such data is probably easily done with secret IDE/SCSI commands. My guess is that there are agreements between harddisk manufacturers and government agencies. Well-funded mafia hackers should then be able to find those secret commands too.
Don't trust your harddisk. Encrypt all your data.
Of course this shifts the trust to the computing system, the CPU, and so on. I guess there are also "traps" in the CPU and, in fact, in every sufficiently advanced mass-marketed chip. Wealthy nations can find those. Therefore these are mainly used for criminal investigation and "control of public dissent".
People should better think of their computing devices as facilities lended by the DHS.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015
Now, the old airport at Tempelhof is about to find yet another incarnation: sheltering some among the massive surge of the migrants and refugees flooding into Germany. Berlin's mayor, Michael Mueller, told the RBB broadcaster over the weekend that one of the airfield's former hangars will be used to provide a roof – a lofty one at that - over the heads of about 800 asylum-seekers, as early as this week.
The need is great. Since the start of the current influx, the German capital has been receiving about 1,000 newcomers a day. More than 65,000 people have arrived in Germany this month, and the yearly tally may run to 1 million or more, officials now acknowledge. With winter fast approaching, housing is a crucial concern, with venues like a disused convention center and former military barracks being pressed into service.
Saturday, September 05, 2015
It's a new city pilot program to track how you , when you drive, how fast your drive and how much gas you use.
The Department of Transportation says it will help fix street problems. Others say its like Big Brother is watching you, CBS2's Marcia Kramer reported Friday.
It's a tiny black box about the size of a pack of gum that is installed right under the steering wheel. It will allow city officials under a program called "Drive Smart" to collect and access data about how you drive — if you drive like a maniac, or if you're Mr. or Mrs. Slow Poke.
"It can tell the g-force of hard stopping or hard acceleration and a hard turn," DOT senior project manager Alex Keating said. "So the driver, as well as the service provider, are able to look at speeds, hard-breaking events, time of day and basic ."
City officials say they'll use to information to make the streets safer, but drivers can also allow various DOT partners to use the information. Allstate, for example, will give you insurance discounts of 10-30 percent, and Metropia will get you home faster with less congested routes — all of it hooked up to smartphone apps.
- How long before that system gets extended to track your dog? Dog poo is an issue in NYC.
- How long before that system gets used to track your beloved bicycle? Hmm? Why should you frigging hipster dicks get a free ride?
- How long before you pay a pedestrian tax? Signals cost money, sidewalks are expensive. Water ain't free. Pay to breathe, maybe? We could live to see it.
Friday, September 04, 2015
BUDAPEST — After a day of defiance by increasingly desperate refugees, the government of Hungary metaphorically threw up its hands Friday and said it was offering to bus thousands of migrants to the Austrian border, sending the crisis spinning closer to the heart of the Continent.
An aide to Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in a statement that the buses would transport the thousands still thronging the Keleti railroad station in Budapest and the approximately 1,200 people who stormed out of the train station earlier on Friday and set off on foot toward the Austrian border.
People will die from exposure. At first just the very old and the very young, but soon the middle aged, anyone who needs medication, anyone whose shoes are too tight, and so forth.
Thursday, September 03, 2015
Police have stood down at Budapest's main railway station after a two-day standoff with refugees, sparking chaotic scenes.Witnesses said people rushed platforms after the station's doors were opened, but officials said no trains would be running to western Europe.
Amid the confusion and an intial pause in which the station ran no services at all, some domestic trains were allowed to leave platforms headed for towns not far from the Austrian and Slovakian borders.
But reports from Hungary suggest refugees were hauled off those trains at the first stop west of Budapest, amid a hardening of the rhetoric surrounding the crisis from the Hungarian government.
The big tweet from this cluster fuck is the line, "We won't be taken to camps!"
And of course, inevitably, instead of making the most of it and getting their shit together, they pissed it away on socialism, beer and skittles. The first fifty years I believe were peaceful due to the constant threat of the Soviet Union, the last thirty have been an orgy of stupidity as ever more asinine economic and political maneuvers have taken hold of the West.