Hey hey! Remember me? No? I finished a law degree, so here is hoping I can post more stuff on here. As a sign of good faith, here is a collection of interesting web bits:
- Fred Kaplan writes in Slate why he believe Edward Snowden should not get clemency.
- Writers at the Verge use the work of Professor David Harris (author of Failed Evidence), to argue current US evidentiary procedures for DNA are struggling to keep up with technology.
- Everyone awaits the decision of the US High Court on the legality of NSA hacking interventions. Wired explains why it is possible the court may overturn lower court decisions allowing it, but this is not guaranteed.
- Pro-Asaad hackers the ‘Syrian Electronic Army’, infiltrate Twitter and Skype arguing that Microsoft is misusing user data (which, they are).
ZDNet has an interesting article on the blackmailing of Singaporean males by “women” in foreign countries who take photos or record the men masturbating / being other wise embarrassing during webcam sex.
This kind of scam is not at all rare, and would appear at least from my observation to be on the rise. There was an Australian case last year of man using a fake recording of a woman to force web cam using males on the other line to perform sexual acts – then he would threaten to use the recording if payment was not made (link on the way).
Micah Scaffer has a great article over at Wired, advocating that we move beyond framing the issue (and law reform) of prosecution in the Aaron Swartz case to that of ‘good hackers’. Instead, he calls for compassion and critical thinking about the aggressive prosecutorial approach and lengthy sentences now given to all computer crimes. He rightly notes that most hackers are young, and many do not come from the privileged backgrounds of ‘white hats’ like Swartz. His most cutting line comes in his appeal to online/offline consistency:
How do we explain to a young person who hacked their school’s website that they might be imprisoned for five years? Yet if they had physically destroyed the web server with a hammer, they would have faced no more than one year.
Two oldish articles of note over at ZDnet:
- The US Department of Homeland Security has sent a serious warning in regard to networking devices such as scanners, printers, computers, and routers; which may be at risk due to vulnerabilities in the UPnP or “Universal Plug and Play” networking protocol used. The threat is considered so serious that the Department is recommending users disable UPnP, or risk possible breach by hackers.
- Feds struggle as Anonymous launch ‘Operation Last Resort’ campaign (video below) by attacking Federal government websites and threatening to release government information. The attack appears partly motivated by the death of Aaron Swartz and is driven by a call for law reform.
So, our favourite quasi-supervillans have certainly been keeping me amused this morning:
- Megaupload founder (and.. wait for it.. Mega HANDS ON founder), known for his extravagant press stunts and lavish lifestyle, has live tweeted his helicopter emergency landing in the middle of nowhere (source Gizmodo Australia).
- Fellow Aussie and narcissist Julian Assange is set to run for the Senate in the September Australian election. His mum thinks that’s pretty cool (source The Age).
- Finally, the eccentric story of John McAfee set to become not one, but TWO films (source Indie Wire).
… and these were just what I stumbled upon this morning.
An Ohio man who found his police booking photo on mugshot websites is suing those sites on the basis that the mugshot publishing industry is violating his right of publicity (Read more on Wired).