Monday, April 10, 2017

I'm Gagging I'm Gagging I'm Gagging for You

Let's start with Internet of Things right out of the gate!
A guy buys a remote control garage opener. Unfortunately he has a brain aneurysm and gets an IoT garage opener. He isn't satisfied with it and gives it a bad review on the net. The head of the opener company bricks his account, so now the garage door does not open.

PRO TIP: avoid IoT toilets.

  • Our good friends at Microsoft have finally released what information Windows 10 collects from you and will allow more specific choices. Not mentioned are the back doors and NSA access.

A Kanye West album has gone platinum.

  • Some enterprising soul has put up a GoFundMe page to help purchase a $15,000 engagement ring for his girlfriend. I suppose I need to recategorize my charitable giving from cancer patients to this poor soul, who can't afford a house-size rock.

Here's an informed view on ISP data privacy from the head of the FCC. Notable is that the Mainstream Media Washington Post did not use this as an excuse to skewer Trump.

  • I made it just a few items before returning to the Internet of Things, plus this is a whopper!  The particular device in question is the Siime Eye Sex Toy. For the sake of science, it's a vibrator with a camera, so you can share whatever you like with whomever you like (tactful, no?). You transmit the video over wifi, of course. Here's where the fun starts: if someone happens to be near your home, they can intercept the wifi signal. The credentials are hard-coded (admin, password=blank); this is horrible.  Hijacked feeds are already showing up online (no, I don't have the urls). Once someone hacks in, they have full access and the ability to own the device. The organization that did the penetration testing reached out to the manufacturer three times, starting in December 2016, with no response. Buy one and share your parts with the whole world!

Break out the party hats and squeaky devices - we bombed Syria!  It's been so sad lately for arms manufacturers and now it's Christmastime! We wouldn't want Grumman to go away hungry, would we? Fire up the bombs, ship the bombers, open up the long-range video so everyone can watch the 'targeted' bombs drop - Let's Roll! 

The president who campaigned on America First has bombed another country, in the fine tradition of other recent presidents.  President Trump, we're very disappointed in you, after we specifically stated we didn't vote for you but we were going to wait and see, giving you a chance to walk the walk. Instead you used National Security to bomb a country that allegedly poison gassed its own citizens. Aren't there other countries, perhaps closer and more affected, who could lead this nightmare? Exactly what part of our national security does Syria affect?

  • Now that we've gotten the IoT sex toy dealt with, some person is locating insecure IoT devices from the internet and disabling them. The problem here, if there is one, is do we qualify this person as a vigilante, do-gooder, terrorist, or used car salesman? This software is called BrickerBot, because it bricks the device (renders is as functional as a brick). As amusing and ironic as this is, it's not really going to be helpful: while your device will no longer spy on you, it also won't work.

They say everything's bigger in Texas, including the hacks. Someone got access to the emergency alarm sirens in Dallas. Do you have any idea what 156 emergency alarms sound like for 90 minutes? Apparently Dallas does

This is just emergency sirens. Let me throw a few words at you and you can think on them: electrical grid, train signals/controls, utility plants...

  • PANIC: by the time you read this, extended support for Windows Vista will have ended.

The United Airlines Public Relations Machine is in high gear. Again.
They overbooked a flight. This is legal and industry practice (our first question). They needed volunteers to give up their seats before the plane could take off. Oops, no volunteer. Oops, someone got volunteered. Apparently he didn't want to go, resulting in Security dragging him off the plane, with a nice bruise from his head hitting the arm rest. The man was identified as a doctor, headed home to work. As one would expect, many videos were taken by passengers. "United apologizes for overbooking."

  • Marshall's progress: today we took him for surgery. The price was outrageous and they wanted it up front or there would be no surgery. The pet credit cards were virtually worthless. At least we'll eat until I get paid again and at least Marshall will be ok. That's an order.
  • The financial considerations were conducted right out in the open.
  • This is for one ear. A second surgery may be required.
  • Two previous ultrasounds were unviewable by the surgeon, requiring a third.
  • The #*@&ing original vet cost us an unbelievable amount and prolonged this issue. The second vet, same practice, sent us directly for surgery. We were played because we're not veterinarians. A few pounds of flesh are in order.
  • Marshall will need to stay overnight, due to the seriousness of the surgery. Poor guy.
  • Please think good thoughts for him.

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