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Comment In other news ... (Score 5, Interesting) 246

In other legal news from the great State of Florida, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office has been caught recording defendants' privileged conversations with their attorneys, and, on occasion, providing said recordings to prosecutors.

Hey, other countries get along fine without civil rights. Who needs 'em, amirite?

Comment Re:Coal-fired transport? (Score 1) 491

Even if that were the case, the power plants would be more efficient than internal combustion engines, and have much better emissions controls.

But it is not the case. Coal-fired plants are being phased out under new environmental regulations, and with the gas boom, everyone's trying to convert to gas.

Electric cars are more efficient than internal combustion, too. They don't use power while you're stopped at a light. They can use regenerative braking. They don't generate as much waste heat.

Comment The real problem (Score 1) 491

Having lived in the SFBA without a car, I say with confidence that Americans who can afford cars will never use buses in great numbers until someone finds a good way to make the buses less disgusting. Kick out the lowlives who drop food on the floor or spit on it, the ones who clip their toenails in public, the ones who haven't bathed in three days, the ones who play the music they like with no thought of whether others want to hear it, and I'll gladly use them.

Public transit works in Japan because Japanese people are polite and consider others. It will never work in the US until Americans learn to do the same.

Comment Re: using SHA-1 (Score 3, Informative) 108

True. As mentioned in the article and a linked tweet, Google plans to migrate to SHA-256 by the end of 2015. Why it will take them so long is not stated.

In the meantime, their certificates only last three months. Probably only NSA and GCHQ could forge a cert in that short a time — and they don't need to. (Though I'm sure they would prefer a nice quiet forgery to issuing an order that someone might blow the whistle about.)

Comment Re:misleading title (Score 3, Insightful) 60

I think it's more like, thank goodness $POWERFUL_PERVASIVE_SECURITY_THREAT made everyone realize their security was worse than crap, because otherwise they would never have gone to all the trouble of fixing it. Plus various suggestions for how to fix this state of affairs.

He seems unaware of the issues with compromised hardware, which will require either a political solution or a whole lot more work than software solutions, but as a call to action, it has some merit.

Comment Take them at their word (Score 1) 455

Good morning, Anonymous.

In an ongoing court case, the US Drug Enforcement Agency has argued that citizens have no "expectation of privacy" for any medical records that are ever provided to any third party.

You mission, should you choose to accept it, is to take them at their word. Find the medical records of as many of the following people as possible: members of the DEA, attorneys for the DEA in this case, and any judge at any level of the US judiciary who has ever ruled against citizens' privacy. Publish said records. After all, according to the DEA's own argument, they have no expectation of privacy. No harm, no foul.

Good luck, Anonymous. This posting will self-destruct in five seconds.

Comment Likely outcome (Score 5, Insightful) 105

I suspect the agencies will make a great show of reluctance, then reveal what they did to some protocols and algorithms -- those where the backdoors are most likely to be noticed, or have already been found, such as Dual_EC_DRBG. The crown jewels, those least likely to be noticed, will remain secret. Nothing to see here folks, move along.

NSA and GCHG couldn't care less about the public interest. They have a mandate to spy on as much as possible on the off chance that it may prevent some terrorist act. They will continue to do so in any way they can unless the legislative bodies or courts in their respective nations rein them in. This seems moderately likely in the US, quite unlikely in the UK.

Comment Re:News? (Score 1) 314

And which of those would cover sending money overseas? If they were grabbing your own books, that would be your papers and effects, but that's not what they're doing.

If a US citizen was suspected of espionage during the War of 1812, and part of the evidence was that he had been receiving money from the UK, do you think SCOTUS would have ruled that evidence inadmissible? I don't think so.

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