Eavesdropping Antennas Can Steal Your Secrets

“At the RSA computer security conference last week, Gary Kenworthy of Cryptography Research held up an iPod Touch on stage and looked over to a TV antenna three meters away. The signal picked up by the antenna, routed through an amplifier and computer software, revealed the secret key being used by an app running on the device to encrypt data. An attacker with access to this key could use it to perfectly impersonate the device he stole it from—to access e-mail on a company server, for example.

The antenna was detecting radio signals “leaking” from the transistors on the chip inside the phone performing the encryption calculations. Transistors leak those signals when they are active, so the pattern of signals from a chip provides an eavesdropper a representation of the work the chip is doing. When Kenworthy tuned his equipment to look in the right place, a clear, regular pattern of peaks and troughs appeared on his computer screen. They could be seen to come in two varieties, large and small, directly corresponding to the string of digital 1s and 0s that make up the encryption key.”

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OWS Hackers Reveal Thousands of Cops’ Personal Data

Computer hackers are avenging the Occupy movement by exposing the personal information of police officers who evicted protesters and threatening family-values advocates who led a boycott of an American Muslim television show. In three Internet postings last week, hackers from the loose online coalition called Anonymous published the email and physical addresses, phone numbers and, in some cases, salary details of thousands of law enforcement officers all over the country. The hackers said they were retaliating for police violence during evictions of Occupy protest camps in cities around the country, but law enforcement advocates slammed the disclosures as dangerous. “I hope the individuals behind these cyberattacks understand the consequences of what they are doing,” said John Adler, president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association. “There are very dangerous criminals out there who might seek retribution” against any of these police officers.

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Apple Plots Its TV Assault

Apple Inc. is moving forward with its assault on television, following up on the ambitions of its late co-founder, Steve Jobs.
In recent weeks, Apple executives have discussed their vision for the future of TV with media executives at several large companies, according to people familiar with the matter. Apple is also working on its own television that relies on wireless streaming technology to access shows, movies and other content, according to people briefed on the project. In the recent meetings with media companies, the Apple executives, including Senior Vice President Eddy Cue, have outlined new ways Apple’s technology could recognize users across phones, tablets and TVs, people familiar with the talks said.

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Another Nail in Privacy’s Coffin

This January, the FAA will be proposing new rules on the use of drones in American airspace — a possibility some see as positively Orwellian, but others, including some journalists, see as an opportunity.Drones play a controversial role in a largely unseen U.S. war carried out beyond the country’s declared battlefields. Iran claimed to have shot down a U.S. drone along its eastern border Sunday. In Pakistan, U.S. drone strikes target terrorist networks in the northwest. In Yemen, a U.S. drone killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a propagandist for al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and killed his 16-year-old American son. But drones are moving outside the military sphere and into the private sector. The FAA has allowed for more the two hundred permits on civilian drone applications, the Los Angeles Times reports. And though it has not opened the national airways to everyone, it seems less a question if they will allow drones, and more a question of when they will…

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Sleepless? Then Stop Taking Your iPhone To Bed

Mobile workers just don’t put the phone down, according a new report from iPass, which provides Wi-Fi and 3G network access to enterprise clients for use by their employees. The company surveyed more than 3,500 people from 1,100 large corporations worldwide and asked them about their mobile device work habits. The results may not be all that surprising, if you’re a mobile worker, but they are somewhat terrifying (or maybe just really depressing). iPass found that mobile workers have a hard time being physically separated from their smartphones, even when it’s ostensibly time to sleep. More than half at 61 percent of those surveyed keep the phone in the bedroom, and 41 percent have it within arm’s reach of where they sleep. Those figures jump to 77 and 60 percent respectively when you’re talking about the younger crowd (respondents between the ages of 22 and 34). Just over a third at 35 percent of mobile workers check their email before doing anything else when they wake up in the morning, and another 38 percent admit to checking their email at various times during the night.

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A Look Into the iPhone FaceTime Glitch Claims

There have been many articles on the web this week suggesting that Apple’s iPhone 4 could be secretly taking pictures of users. I would like to look into these claims and use a little common sense to see if any of this actually makes sense, or if it’s some kind of misunderstanding or joke.

The issue was first reported on Apple’s support forum, where a user says an old picture of her and her boyfriend at work froze on the screen when she tried making a FaceTime call. This could be a believable glitch if the picture was from the last time she used FaceTime, but she says that, although she has used FaceTime at work, her boyfriend has not. So where did this picture come from? Is the iPhone actually taking pictures when we don’t know it? Or is this user just making stuff up?

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Conversions can be fun!

I got these from my friend Tom, they are priceless…

1 million microphones = 1 megaphone
1 million bicycles = 2 megacycles
365.25 days = 1 unicycle
2200 mockingbirds = 2 kilomockingbirds
10 cards = 1 decacards
1 kilogram of falling figs = 1 fig Newton
1000 grams of wet socks = 1 literhosen
1 millionth of a fish = 1 microfish
1 trillion pins = 1 terrapin
1 million billion picolos = 1 gigolo
10 rations = 1 decoration
100 rations = 1 C-ration
10 millipedes = 1 centipede
3 1/3 tridents = 1 decadent
10 monologs = 5 dialogs
5 dialogs = 1 decalog
2 monograms = 1 diagram
8 nickles = 2 paradigms
2 wharves = 1 paradox


The Metric System is UnAmerican!

I saw this on Gizmodo today… There are only three countries in the world that don’t use the metric system: Liberia, Myanmar and yes the United States of America – So even when our government gives in as I expect at some point they will I will still use standard US or SI units proudly. In fact in school whether it was an engineering problem or just a simple math question, anytime units were used I would always convert any non SI unit to SI – it would drive the professors crazy at times because they’d have to convert it to metric to match their answer key but they couldn’t mark it wrong!

Today’s Texting Teenagers Are Ridiculous

Teenagers! Always on call. Especially here in Boston, where many of them—we’ve come to discover thanks to the Boston Globe—sleep with cellphones under their pillow. Important texts (“Seeing if you’re awake”) simply cannot be missed! Brookline, Boston proper, even suburb Waltham—it matters not. Teenagers are texting all the live long day and continue to do so even when they enter their Twilight-covered sleeping chambers for what sounds like the most restless, unproductive, vibration-under-the-pillow sleep I’ve ever heard of…

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