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Comment Voice recognition? (Score 1) 49

OK, this is the sort of question that could be answered by RTFA, however when it's a 40-minute long video, I don't feel as bad.

When configuring Siri for voice activation, you go through some steps that give the impression that it's tuning the activation for your specific pattern of speech. Which presumably is to prevent false activation when somebody next to you is using the feature on their phone.

Assuming this is actually happening, would that prevent this sort of attack?

Comment This article is ridiculous (Score 3, Interesting) 279

Phones are different than computers, yet people still try to apply the computer mentality to it. You don't just buy a smartphone and sit back and use it until it breaks. Unlike Windows XP, your smartphone OS has a very limited window in which it will receive security and other software updates. For iPhones, it seems to be a few years. For Android, it is worse and generally always less than two years. For some of the discount Android phones on discount carriers, the phone may have been abandoned before you even made the purchase!

In what world do you buy a smartphone and use it for the rest of your life? An upgrade plan that includes Apple Care "bad for most"? Hint to the author: You can't extrapolate your personal opinion to apply to the rest of the world.

Comment Re:Know Thy DNS IP's! (Score 4, Informative) 31

Yeah, that helps for sure. The other option is to see if there's a 3rd-party firmware for the router. The firmwares that come with home equipment out of the box are often pretty poor. And are often abandoned after they are shipped. However, something like dd-wrt / openwrt / tomato is likely to be better supported.

Comment Unforeseen consequences (Score 2) 200

When doing security testing of any system, one must consider the possibility of unforeseen consequences. That is, while you think that your test may be harmless, you'll really never know this for sure until you perform the test. And even then, you might not know of all possible damage that was done to the system.

Just as system architects and developers make certain assumptions that may introduce vulnerabilities, a security tester may make assumptions about the consequences of their actions. The problems happen when these assumptions don't map up to reality 100%.

Yes, airplanes' computer systems should receive security testing. But to perform any sort of testing without authorization and when there are potential safety (human life) consequences is inconceivably irresponsible. Regardless of whether or not the tester suspects any damage will occur.

Comment Ridiculous article title (Score 4, Informative) 629

The student observed the teacher's keyboard while the password was typed in. The student then used that observed password to unlawfully gain access to the system in question.

This has nothing to do with the wallpaper. The student leveraged unauthorized access to a system to do something.

"Love your country but never trust its government." -- from a hand-painted road sign in central Pennsylvania