The Hazards of Recommending

Think twice before you agree to recommend someone on LinkedIn. They may be a logic bomber. You may have already read about the fired Fannie Mae sysadmin who allegedly placed a virus in the mortgage giant’s software. The virus was a bad one: it was set to execute at 9 a.m. Jan. 31, first disabling …

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The Problem With Memory Sticks

… is that you forget you have them in your pocket. According to Credant Technologies, a Texas-based security company, about 9,000 USB sticks have been left in people’s pockets in the UK when they take their clothes to the dry cleaners. This is based on a survey (no link available; sorry) of 500 dry cleaners …

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Still Sneaky After All These Years

I still retain the capacity to get bummed out by the intrusiveness of software from companies you’d think would be trying to make us happy these days, not make us madder. My friend Scotty, the Winpatrol watchdog, has been doing a great job of keeping an eye on these things. The culprits either try to …

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Radio Australia stuff, Jan 23 2009

For those listening to my slot on Radio Australia’s Breakfast Show, here’s what I was talking about: Inauguration fever: How it may have tipped the way we use the Net, just like the election did. (People who weren’t there weren’t googling, they were twittering and facebooking.) ‘Dark ages’ White House:The White House runs on ‘six …

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Malware Inside the Credit Card Machine

(Update, July 2009: A BusinessWeek article puts the company’s side; maybe I was a little too harsh on them in this post.) This gives you an idea of how bad malware is getting, and how much we’re underestimating it: a U.S.. company that processes credit card transactions has just revealed that malware inside its computers …

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Virus Hits British Defences

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about how KL’s airport information system had been infected by a virus. I shouldn’t have gotten so het up. Turns out that the UK’s air force and navy have bigger problems. ITV News reported on Friday that the Ministry of Defence’s computer network has been shut down “because …

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Another Facebook Hole?

(Update: Facebook have confirmed the flaw—although it’s not as serious as it looks—and have fixed it. See comments.) The complexity of Facebook makes it likely there are holes in its privacy. But this one, if I’m right, seems to suggest that it’s possible to access someone’s private data by a social engineering trick outside Facebook. …

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The Big Chill Hits Google

So is Google, like, the new Yahoo? Google is closing some of its services, or at least no longer supporting them. Which for me is a tad sad, since I’ve always loved prodding around inside the Googleplex, convinced that one day all these disparate services would come together in the same way Google Docs, Calendar …

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Directory of Distraction-free Writing Tools

(2009 June: added two no delete editors) Editors A working list of tools to reduce writers’ distraction. I’ve been using some of them for a while; I was inspired by Cory Doctorow’s latest post on the matter to collect what I could together. All are free unless otherwise stated.  No backspace/delete editors Typewriter “All you …

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