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Comment Re:Holy crap ... (Score 1) 65

Every card issuer has a set prefix that belongs to them. The first four digits of any card number indicate who issued it. This applies to every kind of card from credit cards you can use anywhere but also things like branded gas station credit cards only good at that one chain, and so on.

This leaves only so many additional digits for card numbers, and from that pool of course some are active. Others have been issued to other cardholders but replaced, so those card numbers are also off the available list. Stolen card numbers are also off the avail list. The end result is that there are only so many possible unused card numbers.

It is also important to remember that not all cards are issued the same: Amex issues most of its cards itself. They have only a few prefix numbers. But card issuers like Visa and Mastercard use thousands of member banks and credit unions to issue cards and each of those issuers will usually have their own prefix numbers.

In other words, most Amex cards start with 37***. This leaves 10 digits for individual cards for the entirety of Amex customers, past, present, black listed, all of them. Amex segregates different types of cards based on the first five digits so not all combinations are possible and available to issue.

But your Chase Visa card will have 5678 and your Bank of America Visa will have 6789 (not their real numbers) which are unique to each bank. This means EACH of these banks has 11 digits they can use even if the other banks also use the same 11 digits for a card. It won't matter because the prefix is different.

Amex and the other banks can have more than one prefix. There are public lists of which bank is which.


Comment Re:Holy crap ... (Score 1) 65

It's 2015 and the US is still trying (and apparently failing) to implement chip-and-pin. So no, clearly they are not trying.

NO they are not. Most US card issuers are implementing Chip-and-Signature, which is NOT the same thing as Chip-and-Pin. The cards LOOK the same and have the same chip but this method happens to be far less secure. What a surprise. Does the US ever do anything with high security?

The only thing Chip-and-Sig does is crack down on fake mag stripe cards because copying the chip is harder to do. But for the signature part, almost nobody ever actually looks at or checks signatures much less asks for ID.

Only a handful of US card issuers are actually doing Chip-and-Pin, mainly small banks and a couple credit unions.

Comment Name drop (Score 1, Insightful) 90

Can we please try to name drop some more schools into the teaser?

I am SURE somewhere we missed somebody's school affiliation that, while having jack shit to do with anything, merits a mention. Surely a janitor who attended night classes at Yale Lock Academy or somebody's third cousin Louis who once had cheese from a shop near Rutgers deserves the same accolades.

Seriously, why the hell does it matter where all these people went to school and why does this need to be in the teaser? You know what was MISSING from the teaser? A reason why anyone should care.

Comment Re:I could be missing something (Score 1, Informative) 95

You are correct. But this sort of ignorant "X times to a lesser value" bullshit math is rampant. I use it to easily spot stupid people for me.

Sometimes I will ask them, please draw for me on a blackboard how you would work "20 times less than X" and laugh at them when they can't do it.

  But the scary thing is how many people don't understand what's wrong. It is simply that you cannot multiply and reach a lower value. 10 times less can't work. Ever.

One tenth can. But fractions are apparently impossible.

Comment Re:Lost in Space? (Score 1) 166

Probably not healthy to hate Speed Racer that much. How can anyone hate a show where the car had more gadgets than James Bond, and in particular, the car had a fucking camera drone 40 years before anyone else ever thought of that idea.

Lots of characters died, not so much in the edited version but they still did.

And you missed the 1996 remake version (no not the movie) where the car got some serious upgrades and ultimately a sort of FTL warp drive which spawned huge plot of about a demonic empire from the future trying to kill everyone. The remake show also had one of the most powerful, meaningful ending themes ever used on an anime series. Absolutely epic.

Comment The past repeats (Score 4, Interesting) 166

Back in the 60's, Star Trek had to compete with Lost in Space as some viewers and a lot of TV execs considered them basically the same. Which is silly. Star Trek rarely had costumed monsters of the week. Lost in Space never missed them.

Both shows shared some writers, directors, guest stars, and even monster props by the same people. So the two shows DID have some things in common. But not premise or most content.

And now, Netflix is remaking Lost and CBS is launching a new Star Trek series. They shall compete again.

Nothing changes.

Comment Completely verified (Score 1) 47

As a new Comcast subscriber, I can confirm all of this is true. 100%.

Comcast's own hotspot finder app shows you a map of the hotspots complete with street address and even names in some cases. For this reason, I don't have one of their wifi hotspots running in MY house. Hell no. Do enjoy USING their hotspots when I am out and about. Works really well, far better than any other hotspot service I've ever had. Comcast wifi is all over.

And for validating, once your device (phone, laptop, whatever) authenticates once with Xfinity Wifi or Cablewifi, their system adds your MAC to the approved list and you don't need to login again. It's very handy.

Comment Intercepted in shipping + Fake Cisco gear (Score 1) 130

The CIA and NSA specialize in intercepting items in transit, modifying them, carefully repacking them to hide any sign of tampering and sending them on to the end recipient.

None of that is impacted in the slightest bit if customers are coming to a warehouse in NC to test it. So it tests clean and they sign off on it. And what happens next? It gets shipped. And if they want to intercept it, they will. And what has been accomplished? Nothing.

And of course this is separate from the OTHER big Cisco issue of counterfeit fake Cisco products dropping into the channel from unclear origins in China. Nobody knows for sure what the hell is in that gear. Is it firmware with malware in it, or malware made to act like firmware? Keyloggers or full blown remote access? Nobody knows. But a lot of businesses have bought that stuff as genuine and installed it and trusted it. The truth is, all bets are off.

Comment Misguided foolishness (Score 1) 275

When you have people openly (or at least semi-openly) plotting against you, what you want them to do is keep talking where you can see and hear it.

You do not want them to shut up and go covert because that makes your job much harder.

The Brits outlined how to do all of this with "Ultra" -they didn't go out and TELL the Nazis the Enigma machine had been compromised. No. They let them keep talking and planning and in the end even sacrificed some lives to ensure the Nazis had no idea they were being monitored.

Had the Brits (and it has to be said, the Poles who started decoding Enigma) gone and waved it in the faces of the Nazis, all it would have done is forced them to use some other covert method that nobody could monitor.

The bottom line from this or any other kind of speech is that it may be unpleasant to hear and see ideas and things you disagree with, be they hate speech or racism, bias, religious proselytizing, political pandering, or whatever. If you make the speech go away, if you make it fall out of the public eye, then all it does is fall into dark corners where the harsh light of judgment cannot easily see it. You won't stop it, In human history, nobody has ever stopped talking about something because someone else (parent, government, teacher, priest, etc) said not to. It isn't human nature to simply surrender ideas like that and stop thinking and talking about them, By trying to lower the boom on open chatter, you simply make such discussions hide and in so doing you make it much harder to monitor and squash.

Comment Stupid (Score 1) 129

Mining for gold like this is a fool's errand, as much as stocking up in warehouses in case the world ends.

Countries who do not have US (read US and other "free" nations) interests at heart control vast amounts of gold and other minerals which they CHOOSE to keep off the market for their own reasons. There is nothing stopping them from dumping their stock and making the bottom fall out of the markets at which point gold won't be worth mining or hoarding.

Everyone has to judge their own finances, but I find it absurd to considering investing in something like Gold where the value is set in large part by countries and peoples who would be happy if my country and people got vaporized. Now, everyone ELSE can invest in it if they want. I don't trust them and I won't invest in things I can't trust.

Comment Re: Does this mean??! (Score 1) 85

But none of this matters. No matter what humans call Pluto or how we classify it. whether we fight wars about it on /. or on a battlefield with guns, none of this matters whatsoever to the astronomical object we call Pluto. Every single atom it's made of will carry on the same regardless of what we call it, or whether indeed humans had ever managed to find out it was there at all.

So go on and argue about it. Someone will eventually win. And it will still make no difference at all. Pluto will carry on for billions of years after humanity has vanished from this universe. If life exists or develops on another body in the Sol system, perhaps Pluto will even get a new name which will also matter not at all.

"Atomic batteries to power, turbines to speed." -- Robin, The Boy Wonder