PATH: BS | Technology

U.K. ISP Tiscali "Taken Down By Spammers"

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[Spam]
Spammers have knocked out the e-mail service for many of the customers of internet service provider (ISP) Tiscali, the firm has said.

BSA's take on this is that Tiscali, long having had a reputation for bad security, has allowed their customers' zombied PCs to run rampant, and now have been wholesale blacklisted by many other ISPs around the world, who are fed up with this service provider being a constant source of junk e-mail.

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World of Warcraft Player Gets Griefed For Griefing

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[Mean People]
What happens when you play online computer games and harass someone else's character? Well, you find out quickly if you make the mistake of telling them where you live and that you dare them to do anything about it.

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-05-15 16:43:25 | Comment on this Article

Windows Vista Protection System Doesn't Offer Much Protection

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Microsoft Windows latest version, Vista, supposedly provides a "much more secure" environment to make using your computer safer. In Vista, MS has created a new scheme where Microsoft-approved applications are "protected" and cannot be altered or tampered with by other applications. You might think this is a nice security feature, but many feel this was done mainly as a way to integrate DRM (digital rights management) to keep people from playing songs and movies without proper rights.

In any case, Microsoft is playing Vista up as a big, more secure version of Windows.

There's only one problem... Hackers have already figured out how to circumvent Microsoft's security, and they can make their own malware run in protected mode so software like Antivirus programs can't remove it. Oh Goody! Microsoft's new feature can actually make it even harder to remove bad software from your system.

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Webcam Too Much for Small Children, Lactose Intolerant

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[Video]
Oh, you've seen live webcams. Some of them weren't even porn...there were baby pandas to watch, Swiss Alps to check weather conditions on, even live executions in dangerous parts of the world that you really wish you hadn't seen. But you've never seen this kind of live webcam before. It's so suspenseful...so shocking...that you might just not be able to handle this much excitement.

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-04-03 10:57:42 | Comment on this Article

Google Rolls Back Map Imagery - Makes Katrina Damage Disappear

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[Environment]
Google's popular map portal has replaced post-Hurricane Katrina satellite imagery with pictures taken before the storm, leaving locals feeling like they're in a time loop and even fueling suspicions of a conspiracy.

Scroll across the city and the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and everything is back to normal: Marinas are filled with boats, bridges are intact and parks are filled with healthy, full-bodied trees.

UPDATE: Accused by a Democrat in the U.S. Congress of "airbrushing history," Google said it has now replaced pre-Hurricane Katrina satellite images of the Gulf Coast region with more recent aerial photographs.

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Unpatched Microsoft Security Hole Being Exploited Online

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Reason # 45,234,101 to switch to Firefox: Yet another major vulnerability in Windows which affects Internet Explorer and Outlook. Users can become infected by merely visiting the wrong web site -- no interaction necessary, or under Outlook, viewing a message. Beware!

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A Tale Of Two Registrars And 75,000 Screwed Customers

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What happens when you do business with a seemingly professional domain registration company and then they blip off the Internet and you lose control of your domain? Well, you might be dealing with the New Jersey-based domain company called "RegisterFly" - whose management team tried to oust each other, which resulted in their customers getting shafted and not having access to their domains. The CEO of the company is accused of mishandling funds. The web site has been up and down, and now there are actually two separate versions of the same web site online at .net and .com that look to be run by different groups.

What does ICANN, the authority that's supposed to regulate this industry have to say? Apparently not much other than, "Hey, don't do that!"

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2007-04-17 20:50:30 | Comment on this Article

Cats and Dogs Protect Web Sites From Spammers

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[Eureka!]
If you've been online for any length of time you know that many web sites now have a system called CAPTCHA which is a "human recognition system" that tries to stop automated programs from posting messages online. This is usually done by tossing up an annoying image with distorted numbers and letters and asking a user to repeat the phrase. Sometimes even humans can't read the stupid images.

Enter Microsoft with their Asirra project. They're working on a new human-detection technology which also has the added benefit of promoting animal adoption. In combination with Petfinder, they display images of animals and ask the user to identify the difference between cats and dogs. This system is apparently much harder to defeat than regular CAPTCHA, and you could end up with a fuzzy new companion in the process!

READ MORE | 1 comment since 2008-08-18 16:18:40 | Comment on this Article

MPAA Caught Pirating Software

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The Chairman of the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America). You remember the MPAA right? This is the high-and-mighty organization that is in charge of convincing and threatening people with legal action if they violate copyright or licensing terms of movies and music.

It turns out the MPAA blog is run by a piece of software called "Forest Blog" - a Freeware blog, and one of the few things the author asks is that if you use the software in a commercial environment, pay about $40 for the registration, and don't remove the links to the author's original site.

Of course, the MPAA apparently installed the software, didn't register and removed the links and credits from it before they let their executives use the blog software to rant and rave about the evils of piracy.

To make matters worse, the MPAA ignored the author's initial requests to legitimize the software, until it became public, then they pulled the site and sent him a letter saying the blog they installed was a "proof of concept" and didn't have its own domain, so therefore it wasn't an issue. Even though then, they didn't pay for the software!

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"Vagina Institute" Poorly Disguised Sham

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[Sex]
Finally...a group devoted to serious scientific study of female sexuality. "The Vagina Institute specializes in collecting and processing, data and information about the vulva and vagina." Or is it?

As if the serious grammatical error in the very sentence describing the institute's mission weren't already a dead giveaway that something is up here, it takes about five seconds to figure out that the site is a gigantic fraud...not-very-good porn and, what's more, propaganda for various ineffective techniques to "enhance" women's naughty bits poorly disguised as clinical study of real medical and sexual issues. (URL withheld because we don't want to help its page rank...Google it if you must see for yourself.)

I've got no problem with porn, and hey, the Internet is unregulated...if you want to put up a site suggesting that poontang is ugly and needs dubiously effective, costly fixes at the earliest possible opportunity, have at it. But come on...let's at least be honest about it. The sad thing about this site is that a few women might actually come here looking for information about their vaginas and whether they are "normal," and come away convinced that they need to spend thousands of dollars on "natural, non-surgical solutions" before any guy would ever deign to look at them down there. (After all, everyone knows that looking is the #1 priority for guys when they've got a willing naked woman on their hands.) This site is no different from spam telling you how to make your penis bigger, except that it's not as up-front about it.

READ MORE | 4 comments since 2012-07-08 03:21:40 | Comment on this Article

Microsoft Windows Vista May Destroy iPods

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If you have an iPod, Apple is now recommending that upgrading to Microsoft's new Windows Vista may be a big mistake -- aside from the previous rants about the software nerfing your XP license, not allowing downgrades and other issues, the latest is, according to Apple, Vista could destroy your iPod!

READ MORE | 11 comments since 2008-08-18 18:06:44 | Comment on this Article

Spammer Faces 101 Years In PMITA Prison!

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[Spam]
[Good News]
Spamming scumbag Jeffrey Brett Goodin has been convicted under the 2003 CAN-SPAM Act, the first person in the U.S. prosecuted successfully under the law. He is facing a sentence of up to 101 years in a federal prison after being found guilty of numerous illegal acts. According to prosecutors, Goodin was convicted on multiple counts in addition to the CAN-SPAM conviction, including wire fraud, unauthorized use of credit cards, misuse of the AOL trademark and attempted witness harassment.

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U.S. Launches Multi-Million Dollar Geosynchronous Paperweight

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[Faulty Products]
[Technology]
U.S. officials are unable to communicate with an expensive experimental U.S. spy satellite launched last year by the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office.

Efforts are continuing to reestablish communication with the classified satellite, which cost hundreds of millions of dollars, but "the prognosis is not great at this point," said the defense official, who asked not to be identified.

Rumor has it this colossal waste of taxpayer money might be the product of Boeing and Lockheed. But remember, if we find out which corporate contractors make crappy products, the terrorists win.

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Keystone Missile Defense

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[Military]
[Technology]
A Navy drill off the coast of Hawaii to demonstrate the U.S.'s ability to destroy two incoming missiles at once from the same ship failed. This second test failure was due to a computer configuration error (Navy techs had inadvertantly installed spyware while surfing www.naughtymidshipman.com) and caused the first interceptor missile of two to misfire and the test to terminate. So on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor, we find ourselves once again unable to defend that port.

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Nintendo Worried About Uncoordinated Wii Users

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[Faulty Products]
With the Wii console due to be released in Europe tomorrow and already out in other major territories, Nintendo execs have acknowledged media reports of uncoordinated gamers causing damage to televisions, furniture, and even fellow players.

The next-generation, motion-sensitive controller that Nintendo's new videogame uses is apparently causing gaming nerds to flail about in their living rooms, causing damage.

Nintendo's response to the issue? It's telling gamers to "calm down."

Calm down? After you stood in line for several days in the freezing cold to pick up these units, maybe they're just flailing about to bring circulation back to their limbs?

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Just When You Thought Your Network Was Secure

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Check out this video from England demonstrating what people can find out from you in very short order... and you thought you were taking precautions so nobody could get access to your computer or data right?

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Electronic Voting Gets Punk'd

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[Technology]
Electronic voting machines may be worse than hanging chads. A Dutch anti-electronic voting group demonstrated how easy it is to actually steal votes from one group and assign them to another with only brief access to the machines before an election. They were even able to get one machine to play chess!

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Adobe PDF "features" Leave Users Vulnerable

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[Faulty Products]
A British security researcher has figured out a way to manipulate legitimate features in Adobe PDF files to open back doors for computer attacks.

David Kierznowski, a penetration testing expert specializing in Web application testing, has released proof-of-concept code and rigged PDF files to demonstrate how the Adobe Reader program could be used to launch attacks without any user action.

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The Church of Google?

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Their web site states, "The Church Of Googlism believes a convincing argument can be made stating that the search engine Google is the closest mankind has ever come to experiencing an actual Deity. It is the ultimate bridge between people and information.

Deities are typically described by their unique attributes such as being all knowing, being everywhere at once, the ability to pray to them (and have your prayers answered), immortality and their sense of morality. Google exhibits all of these characteristics perfectly."

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Cable Companies Create Fake Net Neutrality Groups

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Back in March, Common Cause released "Wolves in Sheep's Clothing," which detailed the activities of nine groups masquerading as think tanks and public interest organizations when in fact they were front groups for telephone and cable companies in the net neutrality debate. Now they've added another five groups to the list: "For example, Hands off the Internet sounds like activists wanting to protect the Internet. Actually, it's a telecommunications industry-backed organization that was spending $20,000 a day on television commercials aimed at eliminating long-standing net neutrality protections so that telephone and cable companies can maximize profit and minimize competition on the Internet."

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