I.T. Security and Linux Administration

May 31, 2014  5:43 PM

R.I.P. TrueCrypt

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


This marks the end of an era with TrueCrypt ceasing operations.  Granted, it was nothing more than a distant memory for the longest time as better solutions came around, at least on Linux, such as dm-crypt. Its still sad to see this day come since I’ve used TrueCrypt a lot from the moment I got into IT a good 10 years ago.

April 30, 2014  9:47 PM

Lavabit bit the dust…again

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


For those who aren’t familiar with Lavabit, it was a service that offered encrypted email service that got cease-and-desist sort of letters form the government once the Edward Snowden event happened.  This was mostly a “we want those emails, give them to us!” email, which Lavabit eventually said “you want all?  you have none!”

Not really sure what they expected, though, when the US system is what caused the issue to begin with.

April 30, 2014  9:42 PM

Google Hacks reCAPTCHA

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


This is the problem with “improving” features.  You make a change in one spot of the code and you break a million other things.  Though I think it is admirable that Google admitted to this issue.  Now to just hope they fix it so they don’t end up like AOL…

April 30, 2014  9:36 PM

Strong Push to Pure-SSL?

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


Should the entire Internet be encrypted?  No.  I don’t see the point of encrypting a website about my neighbor’s dog, for example.  Do I think it should be enforced/mandated for sites that hold sensitive information?  Most definitely.

I think this heartbleed thing has blown things out of control a little too much.  We need to fix the issues we have now before we mandate a whole new list of rules.

April 30, 2014  9:29 PM

Reddit censors things?!

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


The company that owns Reddit doesn’t, but the mods who run (ran?) the technology community removed posts silently that included certain words.

This is done most likely by a “bot” someone made to check for new posts and delete all posts that had any words in a blacklist.

Ultimately this won’t stop me from visiting the site but since people think censorship is a major thing still, why not offer an opinion?

April 30, 2014  9:14 PM

BitCoins for Donations

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


So again people are trying to push the BitCoin rave to be for governmental donations.  With the recent movements towards people accepting it as a valid form of currency, I wouldn’t be surprised if it gets approved.  But, even if it does, who will use it?

Currently no physical stores (that I’m aware of) accept it, and even to get a BitCoin it tends to be rather expensive time-wise.  Would it be worth it to spend that on a political donation?

April 30, 2014  9:07 PM

DarkNet, meet DarkMarket

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


Truthfully I’m shocked it took this long, especially with BitCoin being around for a long while now.  But, then again, BitCoin (BTC) is finally being considered a legitimate form of currency, so hey.

While I have no intention of using DarkMarket, it makes me think of DarkNet, which is essentially another Internet that is only accessible via Tor.  This might be worth keeping an eye out, though.  Even if this doesn’t take off, the code is open sourced which can make it pretty viable in the future.

April 30, 2014  8:53 PM

AOL Talks Breach

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


AOL still exists?

But, seriously, this is interesting to say the least.  The idea of spam itself causing a security breach is intriguing.  Changing security measures by sending out a mass amount of email full of viagra…genius.

I use AOL only for the instant messenger portion these days.  Not sure if this is going to make me be concerned or not, though.

April 30, 2014  8:47 PM

Bug Bounty Program Critique

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen

Bug bounty programs have really become a popular tourist attraction for IT security pros.  The premise is that a company will pay $x for finding an exploit, based on various criteria like severity, impact, etc…

However, it seems more often than not, people are reporting exploits that should be paid for, and getting refused for whatever reason the bounty head wants to claim.  It feels more like hiring a pen-tester to test the network, getting a report and never paying them for the services.

I’m not saying to pay for every XSS exploit found (these days XSS doesn’t even seem to be a threat), but how is this not worthy of at least something?

April 30, 2014  8:32 PM

Should the Government Release Info?

Eric Hansen Eric Hansen Profile: Eric Hansen


This is a big article that can be boiled down to this: “the American government (specifically NSA) won’t always disclose information.”

Some people might get in an uproar about this, but why?  Because we’re not told everything?  Because the government is withholding information?

Around Easter a couple of weeks ago I was watching a documentary on catching the Boston Bombers.  Now, what is real and fabricated in that is left up to the imagination as far as I’m concerned, it did mention a major detail.  The FBI felt it was in the best interest to not disclose information about the bombers.

While this ultimately lead to the capture of one and death of the other, we were still withheld information until the FBI had their backs against the wall.  Yet, no one gets in a fuss about our lives possibly being in danger.

I don’t condone what happened, but I also feel like we shouldn’t shake our finger at one person and tip the hat to the other for doing the same thing.

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