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Comment Not going to happen. (Score 1) 129

I applaud and vigorously support Mr. Snowden's suggestion that our rights MUST (my emphasis) be encoded into the programs and PROTOCOLS on which we rely every day. I seriously and sincerely doubt however that anyone, let alone the entrenched interests who construct and maintain the Internet, will in any way be moved to action.

As instance I cite the farce that is known as email. Architectural and design decision were made which did not consider the mass adoption of email by billions. Nor were the possibilities of incompetent, untrusted and malevolent actors considered. As a small illustrative example. Why, aside from the godlike feeling of absolute power conferred, do these servers allow sysadmins (or anybody who has hacked their account) to view or search the CONTENT of emails. The mail server programs implementing these flawed protocols were and continue to be kludges requiring near genius levels of competence to correctly configure and maintain.

These flaws were and are directly responsible for the tsunami of email spam and malware which began all of twenty years ago. The response was NOT to realize that the protocols were flawed and that serious refactoring was required. Instead castles of sand were built on top of quicksand. Heuristic Bayesian spam filters I'm looking at you here. This non response has directly enabled hundreds (if not perhaps thousands) of millions of dollars worth of damage and computer fraud yet still the protocols and programs were and still are not redesigned !!!

One could go on and on with similar critiques of virtually every piece of tcp/ip's fundamental infrastructure. IPV6 is not a counter example as some twenty years later it formats approximately four percent of internet traffic. These, not merely, and in addition to, the presence or absence of cryptography, I believe, are the privacy busting facts to which Mr Snowden alludes and refers.

If such serious monetary damage cannot impel substantive action this poster asserts that it is difficulty to imagine Mr Snowden's totally laudable revelations and prescriptions having any effect whatsoever.

Comment Citizens are powerless and alienated (Score 1) 610

The American political system is so corrupted that the general public realizes that, despite all the feel good exceptionalist propaganda, there is absolutely nothing that they can do. They realize that they are powerless and that Empire cannot be cured and must be endured. Until, of course, like Sampson and the Temple, they utterly destroy the only known living planet.

Comment Hardware encryption (Score 1) 75

I note that the Hierofalcon and some of the Avoton Atom SoC have hardware encryption co-processors. Given that, post Snowdon, many many ordinary and corporate consumers will be switching to https and using Tor and ciphers much more regularly are there any plans to release hardware encryption to other market segments additional to the micro server market ? I think there's a real opportunity for pc and laptop makers here. Additionally, would any /.ers care to speculate as to the possibility that the NSA may have leaned on Intel and AMD in an effort to compromise these co-processors ?

Comment ummm ... privacy ... N.S.A. (Score 1) 555

ummm ... let me get this straight ... say I'm running my own private cloud or social media instance so that google or whoever can't access or analytic my content without sending me one of those nice National Security Letters or specifically hacking my instance ... so if google et al have their way I, as a private citizen, not as a corprat or pornmeister, have absolutely no option but to have my content/intellectual property/commercial in confidences as an open book ?

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Stinginess with privileges is kindness in disguise. -- Guide to VAX/VMS Security, Sep. 1984