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Comment: Re:THIS is a "golden age"? Yikes. (Score 1) 66

by hawk (#49383705) Attached to: We're In a Golden Age of Star Trek Webseries Right Now

I'm sorry, the fan-made "Star Trek" stuff is terrible, because the actors are terrible. It's as simple as that. They get pretty much everything right, otherwise, but without decent actors, it doesn't matter. I mean, the acting is high-school-level bad.

Err . . . how would this make it any different than Star Trek???


Comment: Re:Good! (Score 1) 326

by Minupla (#49356913) Attached to: RSA Conference Bans "Booth Babes"

I disagree - I am a professional in the security space. I go to conferences for professional reasons.

I'd like the conference vendors to behave in a professional manner too and not insult my intelligence by implying that I'm more likely to sign off on a 6 figure deal because they have women dressed in biker leathers.

If I want to find scantily clad people of either gender, I can figure out where to look, trust me. I'm at a conference on my company's dollar, doing research on products we might want to invest in, I want to talk to someone who knows the bleedn product, not the woman they hired for the week because of her looks.


Comment: Re:I guess she got tired of blaming weed... (Score 4, Interesting) 353

There's no need for corporal punishment, just bring back "punishment" in general, and make it consistent and fitting

This. My daughter knows that when Daddy starts counting down from 5 that she had better clean up her act NOW before the counter runs out. She knows this because I've consistently used that as a message to her that she has crossed the line since she was 2. Typically I only need to say 5, or hold up 5 fingers, and she changes her behavior (often she decides she needs a timeout and takes herself to her room).

That having been said, this is a technique that works with MY kid. Just like adults are different and if you interact with them assuming otherwise you're going to have issues, so are kids. Figure out what makes yours tick and use that knowledge and you'll both have an easier time of it.


Comment: Re:greedy liar (Score 1) 451

by Minupla (#49290527) Attached to: Lyft CEO: Self-Driving Cars Aren't the Future

Hey - if I had the choice to buy an iphone (I'm an android guy actually) and not have all the hassles and expenses of car ownership when I don't need them (there are days I don't drive, but my car still depreciates, gets one day closer to service, gets one day closer to breaking down, etc.). That'd be a trade I'd make.

I mentioned to my wife last night that it'd be great, I could nap with her and the kidlet, instead of being awake because they frown on napping while driving!


Comment: Re:Its Never Too Late (Score 2) 205

by Minupla (#49237619) Attached to: Ask Slashdot - Breaking Into Penetration Testing At 30

A good coverage of the technical stuff, I'll add some of my personal thoughts on "how to get there".

1) There is a community out there, find your place in it. Go to conferences, look for local meetup groups.

2) Become comfortable with PEOPLE. Many technical people are not, but you will be a LOT better at your job if you are. People build systems, people break them. A computer never wakes up in the morning and decides to hack something. If you understand people, you can guess what shortcuts they'll take and know where to start poking.

3) Go watch past defcon videos. There's gold in there. Not in the "oooh exploit" sense (although it's true that some people never get around to patching the old ones) but more importantly to understand how the people in the videos found the holes, and how the people not in the video left the holes to be found.

4) Find a mentor. Someone who's traveled your path before and can help you avoid the potholes before you get there. This is (imo) especially important if pentesting is calling you, as the legal potholes there are many and deep. Someone who's local will know what particular quirks your jurisdiction has.

5) Get a get out of jail free card. Others have covered this to death, but it's worth mentioning again. O&E insurance if you're ever doing this freelance is something I'd also consider to be mandatory underwear.

6) Find a safe playground. There are places you can practice your craft safely. Think the google bug bounty program. Look for these places, read their rules and make sure you stay inside them. too.

Hope that helps. Enjoy the ride, it's been good to me over the years.


Comment: Re:Interesting idea, nasty downsides (Score 1) 93

by Minupla (#49173121) Attached to: New Seagate Shingled Hard Drive Teardown

Depends on your risk scenario planning. But yes, it does. A full rundown of our data integrity program would exceed the tl;dr scope on Slashdot, as well as violating NDAs :).

In general though I'd point out that disk based vaulting technologies have advanced considerably in the last few years and if I were providing advice to someone I'd point out that there are cloud based solutions which are write-only type solutions if your risk tolerance permits the use of third parties to store your data (e.g. CrashPlan). Avamar may also be an option depending on costs and resources.

That's where the professional part of IT professional comes in. You weigh your risks and have an honest discussion with your partners on the business side without fear mongering and you all decide on what your risk tolerance is, and have those discussions regularly (hint: Google's risk tolerance was different when they were in a garage then as a publicly traded company :)).

Comment: Re:Back office (Score 1) 309

by Minupla (#49133307) Attached to: Moxie Marlinspike: GPG Has Run Its Course

We encrypt using GPG at the DB extraction point so that when the file is sitting on the SFTP server in the DMZ waiting to go out it's not in cleartext. Also it allows us to sign the file and our partner can confirm that it's not been tampered with prior to them opening it in whatever trusted environment they process in. We need encryption at rest, as well as in transit, using GPG allows us to leave the 'transit' part up to the systems architects/developers because we know that whatever they do past db extraction is not reverent from a security pov.

Didn't get into it in the first post because I didn't think anyone would be interested :)

Comment: Back office (Score 4, Insightful) 309

by Minupla (#49125893) Attached to: Moxie Marlinspike: GPG Has Run Its Course

I partially agree with Moxie, GPG/PGP as an email encryption standard is never going to reach the "my mother uses it" point of say Skype. That doesn't mean its run its course. I also think it's disingenuous to imply that the number of keys on the public key servers is a useful proxy for utilization rates.

In my company we use GPG every day. Most people who work there have no idea that we do. It's used in sensitive communications at high levels between organizations, e.g. to send documents to auditors. It's also used in a huge number of automated processes to encrypt data during the DB extract process so we can move that data out of the DB network and send it to partners.

We don't send those keys to a public keyshare. That would provide attackers information and we don't do that (ya, security through obscurity sucks if it's your only line of protection. If you're using it to make life just a bit more difficult for an attacker tho, well I'm always for that!)

Now all that having been said, I have great respect for Moxie, and maybe he has the Next Great Thing up his sleeve. I hope to see it at Defcon :).


Comment: Re:Competency (Score 1) 231

by Minupla (#49019595) Attached to: Canadian Supreme Court Rules Ban On Assisted Suicide Unconstitutional

I have a few more examples - mostly because of situations I've been in over the years, and I know that the decisions get made today. Blind eyes get turned, "Oh dear, I appear to have left you way more drugs then required. Make sure they don't overdose on them." and then the death is ruled natural causes, all obvious evidence to the contrary.

I think overall this ruling is good, because it will remove the necessity for such "natural cause" deaths and ensure that the framework is followed instead. There's always going to be messy corner cases in law. There are people who get sentenced for murders they don't commit too. We can't ignore the problem because the solutions are going to be imperfect.

In the wake of this announcement there was someone who called into the local radio show. He said he had injected his loved one with a lethal dose of medication ("enough to kill a horse"). Imagine the guilt and suffering that person has gone through since, as they were unable to seek help, or therapy, etc, because what he did was technically speaking murder. We are not serving the greater good with the status quo.

The next step is for the competent government (federal most likely in this case, since the existing law is federal, although there's a non-zero chance that the feds might leave it up to the provinces through inaction) to take a stab at answering all the messy issues like "What does competent mean in this case". Then there will be court challenges, until we come up with a law that is acceptable within the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and acceptable to the government(s) of the day. It's not pretty, but it is democracy.


"Success covers a multitude of blunders." -- George Bernard Shaw