Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Hacking Religion With My "Soul-catcher" Clause

Back in 1984, I decided to test an unusual "honor system" of program licensing. I had Morris Jones (a member of my Cyber Privateering Fantasy League Team) write a little piece of software for the IBM PC. The program licensing agreement had a clause that said, "If you make unauthorized copies of this software and do not send us the $30 within 30 days, we will own your eternal soul and may sell it to the first Smoking Blood-Drenched Apparition With Fangs (SBDAWF) that meets our price." Interestingly, over the next year, we received lots of checks in the mail from people who didn't want any SBDAWF showing up to collect their souls. The Wall Street Journal even did a little piece on it.

I got the idea from my college days, when I met my first atheist. I told him he wasn't really an atheist and I could prove it. He got all huffy and challenged me, so I pulled out two quarters, fifty cents, and said, "If you're really an atheist, then sell me your soul for four bits. Since you're absolutely sure you don't have one, you make infinite profit, and there won't be any higher power in the picture to enforce the deal."

He sold me his soul, but by the end of the semester he was begging me to sell it back to him. Turns out, he didn't want to take any chance. My atheist friend was really an agnostic. I made enough money on the sale to get me home for Christmas.

I've met only one true atheist since then, and currently own his soul. Every Christmas, I let him know it's still in…ah…good hands.

Merry Christmas, John.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Hacking the 2016 Presidential Race

This ad ran in today's Wall Street Journal on page A5.  It was scheduled to run on the front page of the section, but late yesterday, the WSJ editor-in-chief vetoed running any political ads in that jewel box on page 1. And the deal about "hacking" the 2016 presidential race? Reality is, we're running a 21st century economy on a 19th century operating system.

Worst case, Scott Smith should really be considered for a Nobel Prize in Economics. Reportedly said by a former Federal Reserve exec: "Why the hell hasn't anybody thought of this before?"

Sunday, September 20, 2015

FBI Plays Russian Roulette, Literally!

The FBI has Hillary Clinton's email server. Chances are it wasn't thoroughly wiped, or at least professionally wiped. The question is, how do they handle the data they recover? Three possibilities:

  1. They play by the rules and turn everything over the the justice department.
  2. They claim the files were professional wiped clean and that their recovery efforts didn't yield any fruit.
  3. They doctor the files that need doctored in order to prevent criminal charges to Hillary Clinton or embarrassment to the administration.
They probably won'd do #3, because several foreign governments can almost certainly contradict their efforts. And they probably won'g do #1 for all the reasons they might have tried #3. Hence, my prediction is that they'll do #2…all over the place. And then wait for one or more foreign governments to extort the US.


Friday, August 28, 2015

Cyber Privateering, Mossad Style

According to InfoWorld's 2015 Cyberthreat Defense Report (read it here),  fully 25% of all companies have no plans to invest in a "Threat intelligence Service" (see p. 12). My guess is that 100% of the market would make such an investment if approached with the following communication:

Attached is our documentation of a ZERO-DAY security hole in your computer infrastructure. Also included is a patch we generated to nullify this vulnerability, including source code. A certified hard copy of this information has been delivered to your IT department, along with an offer to license the use of this patch as well as the opportunity for site licensing our automated Threat Intelligence and Patching A.I. technology. Sincerely yours, Israeli Mossad Threat Remediation Services.

So what do you think? Would your company take more than 24 hours to commit to this kind of threat intelligency service?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Want A Built-in Virus? Then Buy a Lenovo PC!

I've been harping on this subject since 2011. Just type "supply chain" into the search box on the left and you'll get the picture.

Yesterday's U.K. Register verified why the U.S. Government (and several others around the world) prohibit their departments from buying computers made in China (read the story here). Turns out, they hide their "crapware" in Windos laptops' BIOS. This is called "roaching the supply chain," a subject on which I waxed poetic in February (see the story here).

Ahem. Is it true that Cisco routers are built and provisioned with software in China?

Taman Shud.