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Submission + - How the FBI Hacks around Encryption (

Advocatus Diaboli writes: To hear FBI Director James Comey tell it, strong encryption stops law enforcement dead in its tracks by letting terrorists, kidnappers and rapists communicate in complete secrecy. But that’s just not true. In the rare cases in which an investigation may initially appear to be blocked by encryption — and so far, the FBI has yet to identify a single one — the government has a Plan B: it’s called hacking.

Hacking — just like kicking down a door and looking through someone’s stuff — is a perfectly legal tactic for law enforcement officers, provided they have a warrant. And law enforcement officials have, over the years, learned many ways to install viruses, Trojan horses, and other forms of malicious code onto suspects’ devices. Doing so gives them the same access the suspects have to communications — before they’ve been encrypted, or after they’ve been unencrypted.

Submission + - Is curl|bash insecure? thinks not ( 2

taikedz writes: I can see several flaws in these arguments, so much so that where I previously dismissed the curl|bash offer as non-indicative of Sandstorm's security otherwise, I am now not so sure.

What do you think? From the article:

Sandstorm is a security product, so we want to address that head-on.

When you install software on Linux, no matter what package manager you use, you are giving that software permission to act as you. Most package managers will even execute scripts from the package at install time – as root. So in reality, although curl|bash looks scary, it’s really just laying bare the reality that applies to every popular package manager out there: anything you install can pwn you.

Realistically, downloading and installing software while relying on HTTPS for integrity is a widely-used practice. The web sites for Firefox, Rust, Google Chrome, and many others offer an HTTPS download as the primary installation mechanism.

Submission + - Google Fiber: A Customer Service Love Story (

kstatefan40 writes: Customer service in the telecom industry has a long-held tradition of being awful. When my Google Fiber went down this past week, I initially thought that Google had regressed to the industry standard after my initial positive experience during installation nearly a year ago. I'm pleased to report that I was very wrong — and the rest of the industry has a lot to learn from the customer service I received from Google.

Submission + - This is What a Real Bomb Looks Like ( 2

szczys writes: You see them all the time in movies and TV shows, but is that what an actual bomb looks like? Probably not... here's what a real bomb looks like.

This story stems from a millionaire gone bust from gambling addiction who decided to extort riches back from the casino. He built a bomb and got it into the building, then ransomed the organization for $3 million. The FBI documented the mechanisms in great detail — including the 8 independent trigger systems that made it impossible for them to disarm the thing. The design was so nefarious it's still used today as a training tool.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: How do I recover from doxxing?

An anonymous reader writes: I've been doxxed on a popular forum, by one of the moderators no less. The forum owner doesn't care, the hosting company doesn't care. I'm getting bombarded by email and social media, even via GitHub. How does a person recover from this? I don't want to create a whole new identity or shut down all my web sites, social media etc. Can't really change my real name either, at least not without an incredible amount of hassle. The police don't care, and since the forum owner is on the other side of the world it's unlikely there could be any legal consequences, and even if they were they would probably only draw more attention to me. I've tried to clean up Google's search results about me. How do I fix this? What does a fix even look like?

Submission + - Amazon appears to be experiencing a major failure (

XB-70 writes: The whole buying/order system is down for everyone. It is not possible to get through to customer support. Phoning gets you: "Please hang up and try your call again."
Amazon Instant Video is not working. Posts in the seller forums confirm this.

Submission + - The life and death of the creative computer virus. (

antdude writes: Hopes&Fears reported "The life and death of the creative computer virus — The early 90's were a renaissance for a certain type of computer virus. Today, we think of a virus as an insidious thing that hides and wreaks various forms of havoc like destroying a nuclear facility; never peaking its head up intentionally. But there was a time when viruses were more playful and made their presence known with creative and occasionally funny graphics or animations via 'payloads.' We recreated the payloads of old school viruses..."

Submission + - "Tough Day" Indeed - Symantec Issues Rogue Google Certificate

jack_babylon writes: On September 14th, Symantec's subsidiary certificate authority Thawte accidentally released a "small number" of " "inappropriately issued" security certificates, apparently intended for internal testing only. However, the fact that these were logged in the wild by Google (and, apparently, DigiCert) seems to indicate that they escaped the lab, at least far enough for a false cert to raise the appropriate red flags.

This sounds similar to the recent acts of poor judgement that got CNNIC's certs removed entirely from Firefox and Chrome, if more limited in scope and more quickly addressed (through, among other things, termination of some Symantec employees).

(And like all reports one hopes go away quietly, these were released in the dead of a Friday night — h/t BoingBoing for noting this news.)

Submission + - What do you think about boomeranging back to a former job?

lano1106 writes: Opinions are mitigated. Some are saying that if you left in good terms, a come back could be an opportunity to seek the higher level position that you were desiring and to negotiate favorably a salary raise. Some says, including me, that you should avoid that situation as much as possible as it not the best path to move forward your career. What is your take? Did someone got an happy come back where the experience met the expections that you have set for your return?

Submission + - Microsoft has built a Linux distro (

jbernardo writes: Microsoft has built a Linux distro, and is using it for their Azure data centres:
"It is a cross-platform modular operating system for data center networking built on Linux"
Apparently, the existing SDN (Software Defined Network) implementations didn't fit on Microsoft's plans for the ACS (Azure Cloud Switch), so they decided to roll their own infrastructure. No explanation why they settled on Linux, though — could it be that there is no windows variant that would fit the bill?
On other news, Lucifer has been heard complaining of the sudden cold.

Submission + - Why You're Still Having High School Anxiety Dreams (

An anonymous reader writes: Tossing and turning in the middle of the night you can vaguely feel the first drops of sweat on your forehead. Half asleep and then fully awake, your head pops up out of bed and you wake with your heart pounding. "WHERE'S MY LOCKER?" It seems no matter how long it's been since you graduated you still keep dreaming about screwing up school. And you're not alone. The vast majority of people report having the exact same dreams. Why?

Submission + - Why The Black Hole Information Paradox Is Such A Problem (

TheAlexKnapp writes: Really nice explanation of the Information Paradox for those who are unfamiliar with it. Lays out the basic gist — that right now if you take two black holes, one made from the collapse of one type of star, and the second from the collapse of a different type, you can't tell which is which. Rightly points out that Hawking's big announcement was really just a small step heading towards a possible solution, and highlights that the paradox highlights the incompleteness of our understanding of some types of Physics.

Submission + - New release of the Trinity Desktop Environment

mescobal writes: A new relase of the Trinity Desktop Environment (TDE) is out. TDE is "a computer desktop environment for Unix-like operating systems with a primary goal of retaining the function and form of traditional desktop computers" which translates into a fully functional KDE 3 style Desktop. Something is missing in the new generation of DEs since some people (perhaps more than "some") feel at home with Gnome 2 or KDE i3.
They have repositories for Debian and Ubuntu-based distros. The submitter is now using it on Ubuntu 15.04, amazed about how well thought things were in the previous generation of DE. We may have gained some things with Gnome 3 and Plasma 5, but also lots of good things are gone. TDE brings them back

A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you. -- Ramsey Clark