Choices of Edward Snowden

Every day I am hearing more details about Edward Snowden. He is the whistleblower that leaked information about the NSA spying on US citizens. Snowden previously worked for the CIA as a security guard. He most recently was employer by Booz Allen Hamilton, a government contractor. Snowden's worked on a contract for the NSA. There he found that NSA had set up the abiltity to track phone calls, emails, and who know what else with tech companies. Then he went public with the information.

Why did this guy do this? I think he only had a high school degree. Still he was pulling down a fat salary living in Hawaii, where he had a hot girlfriend. Now he is on the lam running from the US government. Is this guy some sort of patriotic hero? He did seem to give up a whole lot to expose the dirty deeds on the NSA. I guess he was fully committed to outing the government. You got to give the man credit for that. Now he is allegedly hiding in Hong Kong.

The real question is what is going to happen to the spy programs set up by the NSA? Tech companies like Verizon, Google, and FaceBook are already in bed with the NSA. The suspicious detail is that all these companies are under a gag order to ensure they do not cough up details of the access they have provided the NSA. Man are we moving in to a police state or what? Perhaps we have always been there, and Americans just want to ignore it at their peril. Myself included.

Operation Troll the NSA

In reaction to the latest evidence of the NSA spying on US citizens, somebody has come up with a plan to DDoS the data collecting machines. The pitch is to overwhelm the email and phone circuits on Wednesday with juicy keywords. You know, words like overthrow, blueprints, bomb and such. See the full script at Operation Troll the NSA.

Now the idea might sound interesting in theory. Overload the listeners. However I doubt it will have any effect. Since the NSA could detect that such a scheme was going on, they could explicitly filter out all the trolling. This is especially true if participants follow the exact script. However at least this is a start.

I did LOL that the only link on the trolling page was an Gmail contact link.

Car Jacked

Thieves have been breaking into and stealing cars as long as cars have been around. But now there is a new twist on the robbery. Most cars these days have keyless remotes, power locks, and security systems. Some high tech crooks are now using some strange device to remotely open your car doors. They sneak in without any fanfare. And they get away with your ride. Police are stumped as to what this device is. Fail.

Teenager Build a Sub

Justin Beckerman has just built a submarine. It cost him two grand. Took him six months to build. The sub goes 30 feet under water. It can stay submerged for over two hours. It is self propelled.

Justin had built subs before. They were not as advanced as this one. His last sub could only go down to a depth of 5 feet. The latest is a new and improved version. Now here is an engineer in the making. Dude is still in high school.

Reminds me of a guy I went to high school with. This guy built a robot. Then he upgraded it with rocket launchers. That thing was definitely not legal. LOL. The best part was that he controlled the robot with an Atari computer. Sweet.

Phone Charger Attack Vector

A couple of guys are gong to present a way to install malware on an iPhone at BlackHat 2013. Apparently Apple can install secret software using their charger. Now these guys can too. They built a cheap prototype that does just that. I can see how this would make it easy to infect an iPhone or iPad. People ask to use my iPhone charger all the time. I could just say, "No problem." Then I laugh as they get the payload.

I guess it just goes to show you that you can't trust anything these days. As a side note, there seem to be a number of talks addressing how to hack into mobile devices. It is not just limited to Apple products. This is probably due to mobile being hot right now.

Creating Your Own Cola

I just finished reading directions on how to make your own cola. This is called OpenCola. The ingredients are somewhat hard to find. There are dangers mixing and storing the ingredients. There are also hazards from choosing the wrong kind of ingredients. And it is difficult to get that fizzy carbonation. But it is possible to brew your own cola.

I know I spend a fortune on cola. That would be Coca Cola to be exact. I buy it frequently at fast food joints. And I get 12 packs of 12 ounce cans like it is water. I do try to buy that darn stuff when it is on sale. It would be nice to mass produce the stuff at a seriously wholesale price.

Might be time to set up my lab.