Showing posts with label Theft. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Theft. Show all posts

January 19, 2017

Take One--Even The Table

It's so nice when people give things away for free.

Here someone made a table of throw-a-ways and invited people to take what they wanted. 

But there was one catch...
FREE STUFF
Please Take What You Like
Please don't take the table
Gee, I guess there are people out there that would really take the table or the kitchen sink, as they say. 

We have to remind people where the red lines are.

If only our last President has remembered our nation's red lines rather than let 500,000 be slaughtered in Syria (and with chemical weapons) and our ambassador murdered in Benghazi. 

But as he said as he commuted the sentence for Chelsea Manning who stole 750,000 pages (including classified information) from the government, "justice was served"--this after only 7 years of a 35-year sentence--just 20%--that's justice for our exiting President. 

Chelsea Manning took what he liked and the table too!

And we're the laughing stock of the world again as we let the theft of classified documents leave the country to Wikileaks, but that goes right along with his letting hundreds of terrorists out of GITMO with 30% returning to terrorism

We're full of free give-a-ways aren't we--even when we're being robbed blind--what's his approval rating again?  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 17, 2016

Returning The US Drone

So I love and respect China, and think they are one of the greatest nations of the world.

However, it is wrong that their military stole a US drone in international waters. 

Bullying and theft is a violation of the rule of law and a challenge to America on the international stage. 

So far, our leadership from behind approach has again done virtually nothing, except like a child, ask for it back (after they have already taken whatever they wanted from it). 

Moreover, this is not the first time China has captured our assets and people--less than 6 years ago, they collided into one of our EP-3E surveillance aircraft and captured, interrogated , and held the crew for 11 days!

And hence our planes and ships keep getting buzzed, our citizens captured and humiliated, our assets confiscated illegally, and our secret intellectual property unabashedly hacked and copied.

Moreover, we are seeing a resurgent Russia in Georgia, Ukraine and Syria; a militarized China expanding and weaponizing the South China Sea, a belligerent North Korea with ever further reaching ballistic nukes, and an Iran that violates their nuclear deal at will and now runs amuck with military operations from Iraq to Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and more. 

Oh, and surely let's not forget ISIS and the global wave of Islamic terrorism that is unabated from Paris to Orlando. 

Despite our outspending the next leading 8 nations combined on the military, we continue to be the laughing stock internationally with world leaders calling our Presidents everything from the devil to an SOB

No one would dare do this with Putin's Russia!

Why? Because they know the ridiculous price they would pay. 

We have long since passed the time when we should've stopped the whining, begging, and acting the victim, and instead start to do something real to defend ourselves and once again establish a no-nonsense deterrent, rather than a joke of red lines and hollow threats.

Our Commander-in-chief, instead of laying blame at the doorstep of Congress or world leaders doing the wrongdoing, should start to act his position. 

Perhaps, just perhaps, it's a single phone call to whoever has our drone that says something like, "You have exactly 2 hours to return the drone unharmed or the ship that was responsible for stealing it will pay the consequences--and the clock starts ticking now!"

The funny-sad thing is that bullies don't stop bullying until you stand up to them once and for all. 

A real Commander In Chief protects his nation and his people and doesn't let them be victimized in a endless cycle of violence and shame...and he does it before something really bad can happen. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 15, 2016

Why Can't We Keep Our Secrets

Well after the now notorious email scandal and other information security mishaps galore, this advertisement in Washington, DC is really quite the rage. 
"Keeps classified data classified."

As parents tell their children about keeping private things private:
"If you can't keep it a secret, then how do you expect the other kids to keep it to themselves?"

There are lots of secrets in DC, but there are also a lot of big mouths, security negligence, and even corruption. 

This gives our adversaries the opportunities they need to get our countries vital information. 

We work too hard to develop the best intellectual property for national security and our economy as well as the critical policies for advancing human rights and democracy around the world to let it just be easy fodder for others to help themselves too. 

Technology won't solve the gap in certain big mouths and sloppy Joes around town. 

Only vigilant, smart people can protect the nations vital information that is the fuel for our success and survival. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 20, 2015

Violation of Home and Person

So I took this photo of a newscast recently about women being followed into their homes and attacked. 

What can be more frightening and violating?

A home is one's castle and sanctuary--that is where we go for shelter, safety, and unconditional love. 

When the the home space is violated, then fear and panic ensue as all bets are off to what can happen to everything one loves and holds dear.

Think of basically any scene where the ancient city walls are being broached by a marauding army, and you'll immediately see men, women, and children running and screaming, but alas the city burns and the people are doomed at the hand of their invaders. 

Similarly, when people are followed or suffer a home invasion--their privacy and security is violated to the core--and they easily become victims of theft, rape, and assault. 

I remember when growing up in New York how one local neighborhood kid was followed home one day by a gang, and they started beating him in front of his home until some neighbors came and chased the attackers away. 

But it didn't end there, because this kid was vulnerable for months afterward, not knowing if and when the attackers would return for more. 

It's like when people threaten someone and say, "I know where you live!"

That puts the fear of G-d into people, because it's not only themselves, but their home and family at mortal risk--and not knowing when or how it may happen...people can just piss their pants. 

The opposite is true as well, people tend to be big shots and aggressive when they feel they are anonymous--when their faces are covered by masks, and they have no identifiable insignias--you don't know who they are or where they are from. 

With anonymity, people feel they can do what they want without fear of reprisal. 

But someone who can be identified, they better behave themselves, because they can be found afterwards and "made to pay" for the bad things they did. 

Ultimately, peace comes from having both safety in the home and the serenity of mind that comes with not having to look over your shoulder all the time. 

Everyone should be able to feel safe in their homes and neighborhood, and the attacker be caught, killed, or damned. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 23, 2014

Not Just Business


This was a funny sign on the parking meter.

"All May Park. All Must Pay."

Another way of saying this is like at the dry cleaners, "No tickee, no shirtee!"

This reminded me of a conversation that I was having with some colleagues about whether individuals or organizations can be evil?

(Note: True story, but I've embellished for the sake of demonstration.)

One colleague said, "Individuals are not bad, but people in groups definitely [often] turn bad!"

Another said, "No individuals can be bad, really bad--think of Hitler and so many others who have murdered, tortured, raped, enslaved, and impoverished--it's the individuals that can and do turn an organizational culture bad."

A third person replied that, "Indeed, it can be the other way around as well, where bad organizations make or encourage it's people to do the wrong things--whether for profits, power, or punishment."

Then someone blurted out, "Well, business is business, right?" In other words, it's okay to do something wrong because everyone does it in business--that's the name of the game and what you have to do to compete and survive!

Then I said sort of annoyed at what the last person said, "Business is not business--that is our test to be G-dly, moral, and ethical in all our dealings [in our personal and professional lives]!"

Of course, we don't always succeed--no one does/we are not angels--but we have to try every time, learn and grow and become better people. 

If you do wrong, you will pay--whether in this world or the next. ;-)
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September 7, 2014

Handbag All Alone

I took this photo of this neglected bag in Starbucks today.

Someone just left their handbag on a chair and went off to line up for coffee with their significant others.

I'm not sure they needed to save the table given that the place was fairly empty this morning.

However, it did strike me that this bag was all alone, far from pretty much anyone, and no one was watching it!

Also, not only was this handbag left unattended, it was also completely open at the top, sort of inviting double trouble. 

As you can see, no one else seems to be paying much attention...so if someone wanted, I think this large, full handbag could've been a crime statistic in a moment. 

Trust is nice, but this handbag is crying out for company. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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May 24, 2014

Driving Identity Theft

It's been only about 4 months since my mom passed, and now my dad becomes very sick from chemotherapy and ends up in the hospital for a week.

His red and white blood count were extremely low, but thank G-d, the doctors were able to save him.


However, he is in a drastically weakened state and now looks like he will need regular assisted living just to get by every day. 


This has been horrible to see someone who has always been so strong, smart, and there selflessly for all of us, to be in this condition. 


We found a nice place for him, but even the nicest place isn't his place and doesn't allow the independence he (and we all) always cherish. 


On top of it, I get a letter in the mail with more than half a dozen tickets on his car.


It's impossible, because he hasn't been driving due to his illness.


We run down to check his car, and sure enough someone stole his plates (and replaced them with another set). 


They did this to his car that has handicapped tags.


In the meantime, they are driving around through tolls and doing G-d knows what.


The police were helpful--they came as soon as they could--took a report, the plates that were switched onto his car, and dusted for fingerprints.


I will never forget standing there just after my joint surgery--when not three hours before, I thought to myself, maybe things are finally calming down. 


Hopefully, the police will catch whoever did this. 


In the meantime, I take comfort knowing that G-d is the ultimate police force. ;-)


(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)

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March 7, 2014

We're Giving It All Away


Nice little video from Mandiant on "The anatomy of a cyber attack."

Despite the typical firewalls, antivirus, and intrusion detection system, cyber attacks can and do penetrate your systems.

This happens through social engineering (including phishing attempts), automated spam, and zero-day exploits.

Once inside your network, the cyber attacker takes command and control of your computers, surveys your assets, steals user names and passwords, hijacks programs, and accesses valuable intellectual property. 

Mandiant performs security incident response management (detecting breaches, containing it, and helping recovery efforts), and they are known for their report "APT1" (2013) exposing an alleged significant government-sponsored cyber espionage group that they state "has systematically stolen hundreds of terabytes of data from at least 141 organizations."

Another fascinating report on a similar topic of advanced persistent threats was done by McAfee on Operation Shady Rat (2011) that reveals over 70 organizations (governments, commercial entities, and more) that were targeted over 5 years and had terabytes of information siphoned off. 

The overall risk from cyber espionage is high and the McAfee report states:

- "Every company in every conceivable industry with significant size and valuable intellectual property and trade secrets has been compromised (or will be shortly), with the great majority of the victims rarely discovering the intrusion or its impact."

- "What we have witnessed...has been nothing short of a historically unprecedented transfer of [intellectual] wealth - closely guarded national secrets...disappeared in the ever-growing electronic archived of dogged adversaries."

In short we can't keep a secret--we're putting endless gobs and gobs of our information online and are not adequately protecting it in cyberspace, with the result that our adversaries are able to access, exfiltrate, disclose, modify, or destroy it.

In short, we're giving it all away - why? 
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March 6, 2014

Beware of Botnets



Interesting video demonstration of how botnets work and can literally take over your computer.

In essence, your computer becomes a zombie under the command and control of the botnet sender.

Computers get infected through a trojan or worm, and then the sender has you--they control your computer and information.

Generally, they do this to send spam, steal information, or send out other malware, all under anonymity. 

Once infected, the sender has complete control over your computer and can exfiltrate, delete, or change your data, turn on the keyboard lights, add a tail to your mouse, and even format your hard drive. 

The malware often can even disable your firewall.

The sender can turn on a keylogger and log your keystrokes, and capture your user ids and passwords to banking and financial institutions, and draw out your money. 

The video demos an example of botnets with a variant of the Zeus trojan. 

Worth a watch.

Makes me wonder whether our adversaries are infecting more and more computers, until they have almost everyone--eventually a virtual army.

Then at the time of their choosing, they can conduct one big massive attack, or incremental ones, logging into peoples accounts, stealing their identities and savings, sending out misinformation, destroying data and computers en masse. 

We need to be aware of what's possible, maybe even probable. 

Is your computer infected and you don't even know it yet?
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November 3, 2012

A Little Issue of Trust

When we went to a local DQ and tried to use the restroom, the door was locked. 

Realizing there was no one inside, we went to counter and asked for the key.

The lady behind the counter pulls out this long, heavy chain with this little key on it. 

Apparently, they have had an issue with people walking off with their bathroom key, and they didn't want to trust their key to just any holder. 

But with this mamouth keychain--literally a chain--this was not going to happen to them again. 

Now the problem is what do you do with it when you are in the bathroom? 

Perhaps, this could be a spin on walking and chewing gum at the same time. 

Good luck with this one! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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