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Comment: Re:Don't get a new card---get a new acc't no. (Score 1) 75

by davecb (#48686431) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With Companies With Poor SSL Practices?

Amex will provide single-use numbers for untrustworthy vendors. They purportedly will also do single-vendor numbers, so if you give such a number to a particular vendor, anyone who steals it will have it bounce.

I've tried to confirm the latter, with no particular success.

+ - Sony Hack Reveals MPAA's Big '$80 Million' Settlement With Hotfile Was A Lie->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "For years, we've pointed out that the giant "settlements" that the MPAA likes to announce with companies it declares illegal are little more than Hollywood-style fabrications. Cases are closed with big press releases throwing around huge settlement numbers, knowing full well that the sites in question don't have anywhere near that kind of money available. At the end of 2013, it got two of these, with IsoHunt agreeing to 'pay' $110 million and Hotfile agreeing to 'pay' $80 million. In both cases, we noted that there was no chance that those sums would ever get paid. And now, thanks to the Sony hack, we at least know the details of the Hotfile settlement. TorrentFreak has been combing through the emails and found that the Hotfile settlement was really just for $4 million, and the $80 million was just a bogus number agreed to for the sake of a press release that the MPAA could use to intimidate others."
Link to Original Source

+ - The Dawn of Trustworthy Computing

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "Nick Szabo writes that when we use web services, we are relying on an architecture based on full trust in an unknown "root" administrator, who can control everything that happens on the server. They can read, alter, delete, or block any data on that computer at will. Even data sent encrypted over a network is eventually unencrypted and ends up on a computer controlled in this total way. With current web services we are fully trusting, in other words we are fully vulnerable to, the computer, or more specifically the people who have access to that computer, both insiders and hackers, to faithfully execute our orders, secure our payments, and so on. Compare this architecture to traditional commercial protocols, such as ticket-selling at a movie theater, that distribute a transaction so that no employee can steal money or resources undetected. There is no "root administrator" at a movie theater who can pocket your cash undetected. On the Internet, instead of securely and reliably handing over cash and getting our goods or services, or at least a ticket, we have to fill out forms and make ourselves vulnerable to identity theft in order to participate in e-commerce.

Recently a developing technology, often called "the block chain", is starting to change this. A block chain computer is a virtual computer, a computer in the cloud, shared across many traditional computers and protected by cryptography and consensus technology. A block-chain computer, in sharp contrast to a web server, is shared across many such traditional computers controlled by dozens to thousands of people. By its very design each computer checks each other's work, and thus a block chain computer reliably and securely executes our instructions up to the security limits of block chain technology, which is known formally as anonymous and probabilistic Byzantine consensus (sometimes also called Nakamoto consensus). Instead of the cashier and ticket-ripper of the movie theater, the block chain consists of thousands of computers that can process digital tickets, money, and many other fiduciary objects in digital form. "I think we see every week now somewhere between one and three entrepreneurs come in with blockchain ideas," says Chris Dixon. "There's definitely some momentum behind it.""

+ - Adobe Flash Update Installs McAfee Security Scan Plus Crapware

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "If you get an update notification for Adobe Flash you will also be installing McAfee Security Scan Plus. This mornings update did open an Adobe webpage but did not give the option of unticking a box to prevent installation of McAfee crapware like previous updates have had. To uninstall — Start, McAfee Security Scan Plus, Uninstall, restart, cross your fingers nothing gets borked."

Comment: Re:Paralympics (Score 1) 232

by davecb (#48669463) Attached to: Should Video Games Be In the Olympics?
Indeed: its mostly tactics, reflexes, the ability to "see" the play as it develops and a dab of strategy. All the physical stuff to put those to use on a field instead of a controller are missing. To that you add a really high muscle "twitch" rate, that's probably not seen in the physical game, only in the simulation.

Comment: "Individually and Collectively" ? (Score 1) 515

by davecb (#48586501) Attached to: Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them
I don't know if you can do so in the US, but in Canadian law you can seem to be able to sue both an individual and the body of which he is a part. Strong unions or companies usually pay to defend their members and try to pay any fines, but if the offence is serious enough, the union or employer won't be able to afford it, and the individual will be punished despite their efforts. This can be use by good people against bad, or bad people against good, it doesn't matter: as an example, people sue city councillors and the city all the time.

Comment: Re:5th Admendment? (Score 1) 446

by davecb (#48510807) Attached to: 18th Century Law Dredged Up To Force Decryption of Devices
Yes: it's a so-called "writ of assistance" or "general warrant". They keep being outlawed, and keep coming back. The RCMP said they retired their last general warrant just a few years ago, but the government of the day seems to trying to recreate a subset for people who use the internet...

Comment: It has to be a crime in NZ, too (Score 1) 166

by davecb (#48492939) Attached to: Kim Dotcom Faces Jail At Bail Hearing

Countries will extradite their citizens if they've been charged with a crime, but it has to be a crime in both countries, and it needs to be of some severity. Parking tickets aren't enough to get me extradited from Canada, even though not paying them is a misdemanor. Similarly, charging me with blasphemy in Iran and asking for me to extradited won't work either.

NZ needs to have made copyright infringement an indictable offence, and they need to have done so before Mr Dotcom was charged.

If not, and if they wish to get rid of him, they need to ensure somehow that he doesn't have a lawyer, and then hope he can't defend himself adequately.

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