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Router Flaw Is a Ticking Bomb | Mike Lynn Has Integrity^3
Topic: Technology 4:01 pm EDT, Aug  2, 2005

Wired has done a great interview with Mike. It should clear up a number of the questions people have had with recent events.

I would like to specifically point out one part of this interview:

WN: So ISS knew the seriousness of the bug.

Lynn: Yes, they did. In fact, at one point ... they apparently didn't get it, and they actually wanted to distribute the full working exploit very widely inside the company.... I was told ... "Give this to all the sales engineers and to all the pen testers."

WN: Why would they want you to do that?

Lynn: Well, because it bruises Cisco, remember? Mind you, this was something that Cisco hadn’t gone public with yet and that's not useful to pen testers because what do they advise their customers to do (to protect themselves if no information about the vulnerability has been released yet)?

I told them, "You do realize if you do that, it's going to leak?" And (one of the ISS guys) says, "That's Cisco's problem." And then (another ISS guy) turns to me and says that they need to understand this could be their Witty worm. I was like, Whoa, what meeting did I walk into?

(The Witty worm was a particularly aggressive and destructive code released by someone last year that targeted computer systems running a security program made by Internet Security Systems and even more specifically targeted military bases using the software. It infected more than 12,000 servers and computer systems in about an hour. Because of the worm's speed in spreading and its creators' apparent knowledge of who ISS' customers were, some security experts speculated that someone working for or connected to ISS might have been responsible for writing and releasing it.)

At that point, I told them all no, and they fought it and I resigned right there on the spot. And this was about a month ago.

I thought they were handling this in a non-ethical manner. Because it was just way too fast and loose with who can see this.... I mean, I don't even want people to see it now. (ISS talked him out of the resignation by agreeing to give him control over who could see or have the exploit.)

All I can say is WOW. A big "wow". Caps, bold, and feeling.

Anyone who says that Mike is not on the level needs to reference this. This says truly horrible things about ISS. This should cost them some serious reputation capitol.

One thing that Mike did a great job of in this interview is getting the idea out that in order to defeat the "bad guys", you must run faster then them. It is the only option.

Case in point, via the Wall Street Journal:

"The vulnerabilities are out there on the Net in full broadcast mode," said Gilman Louie, a tech-industry veteran who heads In-Q-Tel, a venture-capital firm backed by the Central Intelligence Agency. "The bad guys get to it faster than everybody else. I'd rather have disclosure and let everybody respond."

Disclosure is a great thing, but it must be done properly. I would argue that Mike did it properly. I would argue that he has displayed the best kind of ethics through this entire mess. Given the content of this Wired interview, I would argue that ISS has its head up its ass.

Router Flaw Is a Ticking Bomb | Mike Lynn Has Integrity^3

And Now Bombings in London: Can Islamic Terrorism be Stopped? (by Falsafay Ghaalib) - Media Monitors Network (MMN)
Topic: Miscellaneous 7:18 pm EDT, Jul 12, 2005

Yes, it could be stopped. First, we have to look at the root cause for this mayhem. We have to accept the fact that a group of people with a high level of education, coordination and sophistication, scattered around all over the world, cannot become crazy and willing to commit heinous crime simultaneously without any reason.

Obviously written by a non-native English speaker, look past the missing pronouns and definite articles. While I doubt any of these things will happen with the current political climate, I think he's right in thinking his course of action would minimize Islamic terrorism.

And Now Bombings in London: Can Islamic Terrorism be Stopped? (by Falsafay Ghaalib) - Media Monitors Network (MMN)

Unveiling Iraq's teenage prostitutes
Topic: Current Events 4:27 pm EDT, Jul  5, 2005

The story of a Sunni girl from Fallujah selling herself in a Damascus nightclub represents startling new fallout from the Iraq war, one human rights organizations and experts are only beginning to address. An increasing number of young Iraqi women and girls who fled Iraq during the turmoil are turning to prostitution in Syria, although there are no reliable statistics on how many girls are involved. That might partly explain why so little reporting has been done on the topic. For journalists and human rights workers, securing contact with Iraqi sex workers in Syria is difficult and dangerous because the topic is taboo.

This is an interesting article around the desparation that many Iraqi refugees are feeling, but it's not really just because of the war. One person quoted in the article said it pretty clearly - prostitution isn't new, there's just a lot more of it. Many of the economically pillaged countries with high populations and few jobs face this kind of problem every day. Go to Bangkok, Singapore, Shanghai or Beijing and see how prevalent prostitution is there, and not just locals - the bars and clubs are full of women from the Phillipines, Indonesia, Russia, Vietname, you name it. The war is certainly the biggest factor in the economic depression that Iraq is experiencing, but ending the fighting won't solve the problem, either.

Unveiling Iraq's teenage prostitutes

BBC NEWS | Health | TV 'may stunt toddlers' learning'
Topic: Health and Wellness 4:26 pm EDT, Jul  5, 2005

The other [theory] is that the intense visual and auditory output from TV damages the child's rapidly-developing brain.

I'm telling you, Nerve Attenuation Syndrome is going to be real. (see Johnny Mnemonic)

BBC NEWS | Health | TV 'may stunt toddlers' learning'

Would you want to know if Alzheimer's is coming?
Topic: Health and Wellness 5:29 pm EDT, Jun 22, 2005

Would you want to know?

Would you want to know if, a decade from now, your brain will begin to deteriorate?

Even if you can't do much to stop it?

The questions sound like a science-fiction brainteaser. But they became real with the announcement this week that researchers may be able to predict Alzheimer's disease nearly a decade before symptoms appear.

Experts say predicting illness raises ethical questions for doctors and societal questions about insurance, workplace discrimination and privacy.

Would I want to know that in 5 years I wouldn't remember anything, and would be lost and alone in the world? Yes, I would, because I don't think I'd want to let myself get that far.

Would you want to know if Alzheimer's is coming?

PhreakNIC 9 Site Available
Topic: Local Information 1:51 pm EDT, May 13, 2005

The PN9 site is up and available for your perusal. Dates, hotel info, and mailing list signup info, among other things. Pass it 'round.

PhreakNIC 9 Site Available

Everything you wanted to know about the Nuclear Option
Topic: Current Events 1:48 pm EDT, May 13, 2005

] But there must be something different in the way that the
] Democrats are blocking Bush's nominees, right? The
] Republicans say that Democrats are doing is
] "unprecedented."

] Oh, yes they do. Just the other day on Fox News, Utah
] Sen. Orrin Hatch, the former chairman of the Senate
] Judiciary Committee, proclaimed: "We've never had a
] filibuster of judges in the history of this country." In
] a myth vs. fact sheet, the Republican National Committee
] says that "having to overcome a filibuster (or obtaining
] 60 votes) on judicial nominees is unprecedented."
] But that's not a fact. In 1968, Republicans led a
] filibuster against Lyndon Johnson's nomination of Abe
] Fortas as chief justice. And that isn't the only
] Republican attempt to filibuster a judicial nominee in
] recent history. During the Clinton years, the
] Congressional Research Service says, Democrats were
] forced to bring cloture motions on six judicial nominees.
] While the existence of a cloture motion doesn't always
] mean that a filibuster is in effect, in at least some
] instances it has meant just that: In 2000, Frist himself
] voted to support a filibuster against Richard Paez,
] Clinton's nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
] Ninth Circuit.

This article presents a very good assessment of just what can and can't happen along the lines of the "Nuclear Option." It's not as cut and dry as many would think.

Everything you wanted to know about the Nuclear Option

RE: Dementia on Linux Journal (#133) Cover
Topic: Technology 1:23 pm EDT, Apr 18, 2005

Rattle wrote:
] Sara Trice, SE2600 and NLUG regular, and also a MemeStreams
] user ( , is on the
] cover of the current Linux Journal.
] The cover of Linux Journal is like People for hardcore geeks.
] Way to go Sara!

Very, very funny.

Cover in question is:

And, no, that's not me by a longshot.

RE: Dementia on Linux Journal (#133) Cover

Lego Abu Ghraib
Topic: Current Events 6:32 pm EST, Feb  9, 2005

] He's just beginning his teens, but I've been house
] sitting long enough to watch him go from Harry Potter
] toys to Lego Mindstorms and Playstation 2. So on Saturday
] night when I arrived to the empty house, I got a beer and
] went into his bedroom to check out his toys. There were
] immediate telltale signs of "young man" everywhere... but
] there were some Legos left around on his toy chest. I
] looked once and was on my way out, but then noticed the
] configuration of the Lego assembly. It was a compound.
] And in the back, was a child's version of Abu Ghraib.
] Stunned, I took photos.

You have to wonder what made the kid decide to recreate this area. What kids (early teens) watch enough news for this to be ingrained in his mind as something to admire? Maybe it's a way of understanding what happened? I can only hope that it's not because a mentor has idolized what has happened there.


Lego Abu Ghraib

Fahrenheit 9/11 wins People's Choice Award for Best movie
Topic: Current Events 5:09 pm EST, Jan 21, 2005

] Last night, at the People's Choice Awards, "Fahrenheit
] 9/11" was named the Best Movie of the Year. It was a
] stunning moment for us. And, somewhere inside the Bush
] White House, someone there must have been stunned, too.
] 21 million people voted in the People's Choice Awards.
] They chose our film over "Shrek 2," "Spiderman 2" and
] "The Incredibles." If we can beat that many superheroes,
] surely we can survive the next four years.

I hope we can, anyway, and still have something resembling our rights when we're done.

Video file of acceptance on page.

Fahrenheit 9/11 wins People's Choice Award for Best movie

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