back to article CNN 'tech analyst' on NAKED CELEBS: WHO IS this mystery '4chan' PERSON?

"If your password is password, change the 's' to a dollar sign." That's the advice from US news network CNN's "technology analyst" Brett Larson, who also thinks that 4chan is some sysadmin bloke who knew how to "hack things" so he could leak saucy, private photos of Jennifer Lawrence and other female celebrities. The confusion …

  1. Sheep!

    CNN is nothing more than airport lounge music.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      CNN: Computer N00bs News

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Their political analysis is on the same level.

        1. James O'Shea

          No, unfortunately. They know vastly more about tech subjects than they do about politics.

          1. Mike Flugennock
            Coffee/keyboard

            D'aahhh ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha hahhh

            "No, unfortunately. They know vastly more about tech subjects than they do about politics.

            M'eh, that ain't sayin' much.

        2. Alan Brown Silver badge

          EVERYTHING is at the same level.

          "news organisations" are blatently wrong about so much stuff in areas that people who do know their shit about can pick it apart. What gives you any confidence that they're any more accurate in areas you don't know about?

          There are very few actual journalists and even fewer specialist journalists.

          1. Rick Giles
            FAIL

            Journalistic Integruhty

            The thing that tickles me shitless is that they still call people that break into systems for nefarious purposes 'hackers' when the term they need to use is 'cracker'. Once they use the H word, I have to move on to the next thing because I know that the rest is just hot air.

            1. Terry Barnes

              Re: Journalistic Integruhty

              "they still call people that break into systems for nefarious purposes 'hackers'"

              Usage defines meaning. Much as it may pain you, hacker is the right term.

              1. Rick Giles

                Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                So, people that break into safes are safehackers?

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Happy

                  Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                  Actually, yeah. I define hacking as manipulating a system in an unexpected way to achieve an optimal result. Now the expected can be legit, or not (cracking), totally off-the-wall, whatevah. And the system can include people, not just hardware. Cracking is just one sub-type A and the safe-hacker will, I'd bet, look in all the places people hide the combination in which case he/she is doing social-hacking as well.

                  I'm engineer by inclination as well as professionally. I've been hacking everything, even doing the dishes or my laundry. I suppose that falls under chemical/process engineering. Again whatevah. It keeps my mind always looking at the systems around me which is always to the good. And BTW, I do them by hand.

                  Over fifty years a hacking and not letting the grass grow under my feet (which is logically impossible, so far).

                2. Terry Barnes

                  Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                  "So, people that break into safes are safehackers?"

                  I don't believe such a term is in general usage amongst the population, so no.

                  The use of "hacker" to mean a person who gains unauthorised access and use of a computer system *is* in general usage.

                3. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                  "So, people that break into safes are safehackers?"

                  No, because that's what's known as "a different word", with "a different meaning".

                  In the same way that "table" does not mean the same thing, when those letters are used in the word "unstable".

                4. Bob Dole (tm)

                  Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                  >>So, people that break into safes are safehackers?

                  Rick, it's time to give up that fight. It was lost YEARS ago.

            2. Lamont Cranston

              Re: Journalistic Integruhty

              Doesn't "cracker" have a totally different meaning, in the US (other than "biscuit")?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Journalistic Integruhty

                Cracker is either a racial slur against whites or someone who strips out copy protection or DRM.

            3. Stevie

              Re: Hacker/Cracker

              Oh dear. Someone who actually read those 45 pages at the start of a unix textbook.

              Sorry mate, that war was lost almost as soon as it began.

              And you can say "safehacker" if you want. You'll sound silly unless the rest of your circle start saying it too, but it's a free country.

          2. stu 4

            Al Jazeera

            I'd suggest are an order of magnitude more competent than any other news org.

            there's tv coverage, and website news is 2nd to none.

          3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            What gives you any confidence that they're any more accurate in areas you don't know about?

            Why, the Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect, of course.

            Personally, I find the GMAE bites the hardest while watching police procedurals, which these days do so love the Stupid Computer Tricks. They're obviously just magic that the writers appeal to whenever they can't, or can't be bothered to, figure out a sensible way to advance the plot. Procedurals that pretend to be about forensic science are the worst - Fox's Bones is a particular offender.

            But then I never watch TV news, so I'm spared the sort of thing described in the article. I read the newspaper and other sources, but they rarely do interviews so at least I needn't witness the grim spectacle of some self-professed expert making idiotic pronouncements.

            (Except when the expert is me, of course. And I enjoy that.)

            1. Tim Bates

              "Procedurals that pretend to be about forensic science are the worst - Fox's Bones is a particular offender."

              I don't even question the stuff on Bones - it's so fantastical that it just registers as sci-fi on my scale.

              A recent episode of Major Crimes on the other hand... They physically took some servers and their tech geek says this: "The data will still be intact, but you're gonna need some help getting through their firewalls."

              But as if that wasn't enough, they went on with the train wreck:

              "Well, mom, these are most likely load-balanced servers running Apache. Or, uh, maybe Fedora under Linux. Nothing advanced I could probably get these booted up and reset the root passwords."

              1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

                I don't even question the stuff on Bones - it's so fantastical that it just registers as sci-fi on my scale.

                Agreed, but sometimes it's painful even then, like the bit a couple years back where the wizard ("hacker") used his magic powers ("hacking skills") to infect some system through RFID stickers on library books. Ow.

                A recent episode of Major Crimes on the other hand... They physically took some servers and their tech geek says this: "The data will still be intact, but you're gonna need some help getting through their firewalls."

                Yes, that one still stings too. And usually Major Crimes avoids the IT stuff entirely, which makes it one of the more-watchable procedurals in my book.

    2. Rick Giles
      Linux

      "CNN is nothing more than airport lounge music."

      For tone deaf people...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I changed all my nudie pics passwords to "pissword" years ago and no-one has guessed it yet.

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge

        Aha

        I changed all my nudie pics passwords to "pissword"

        Now we know your account name, officercrabtree

  2. Ralph B

    "We've all done these things"

    "We've all done these things ... in front of cameras" said the CNN "technology analyst".

    Have we? Really? Am I really alone in never having taken a nude selfie?

    I think you've all gone mad.

    1. frank ly

      Re: "We've all done these things"

      I suggest that you start with a picture of your naked feet. You can then build on that in a manner and over a timescale that you feel comfortable with. [creepy voice] Join us.

    2. MyffyW Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Re: "We've all done these things"

      Er... no we haven't.

      Really chaps and chapesses keep your frocks on unless the plot justifies it or the money and avarice overcomes the embarrassment you'd feel having Great Aunt Flossie seeing your mary-jane.

      1. Tom Wood

        Re: "We've all done these things"

        In the old days perhaps the best reason for not taking photos of your embarrassing bits (aside from the more obvious concern that nobody wants to see *that*) was that the lady behind the photo counter in Boots would get to see them.

        Now, just replace that lady behind the photo counter with someone at Google/the NSA/The Sun and you still have exactly the same good reason for not taking photos of your embarrassing bits.

        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

          Re: "We've all done these things"

          But I have no embarrassing bits!

          I mean, all bits are objects of equal pride and joy!!1!

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "We've all done these things"

            Yup it says so on the new US digital declaration of Independence:

            "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all bits are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Social Media, Uncensored Selfies and the pursuit of kitten videos"

            1. Otto is a bear.

              Re: "We've all done these things"

              Ah, so the ultimate goal is for me to post a picture of myself naked and smothered in kittens on facebook.

              Well it might be better than the ice bucket challenge.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "We've all done these things"

          Now, just replace that lady behind the photo counter with someone at Google/the NSA/The Sun and you still have exactly the same good reason for not taking photos of your embarrassing bits.

          You have more reasons: the digital variety is easier to replicate and distribute on a truly *vast* scale.

        3. P. Lee
          Trollface

          Re: "We've all done these things"

          I hear that if you paste them into an excel file, OneDrive will, er, encrypt them for you...

      2. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: "We've all done these things"

        "Really chaps and chapesses keep your frocks on unless the plot justifies it"

        'This is a nude scene! I'm not doing it unless the plot absolutely justifies it!'

        'What'd she say?'

        'She said that she wouldn't do it unless it was absolutely essential to the plot"

        'Ah. Will $5000 cover it?'

      3. Rick Giles
        Childcatcher

        Re: "We've all done these things"

        I propose that we all get naked.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "We've all done these things"

          "I propose that all the women get naked."

          FTFY

    3. big_D Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: "We've all done these things"

      If I tried to take naked selfies or naked photos of my other half, I'd be single again in a flash!

      1. brooxta

        Re: "We've all done these things"

        > in a flash

        I see what you did there. Have an upvote.

    4. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

      Re: "We've all done these things"

      When my naughty bits were worth photographing, the selfies would have been daguerreotypes.

  3. Efros

    Think of the children... or not.

    I think possibly for the only time ever in recorded history the religious right may be correct, abstinence is the only answer. You don't want your pink bits displayed to all and sundry, well don't immortalize them in digital form. It's the only way to be sure...

    1. DropBear

      Re: Think of the children... or not.

      Complete non sequitur. I can immortalize them as much as I please provided I don't keep them online or some other place that can reasonably be expected to be hacked.

      1. DropBear
        WTF?

        Re: Think of the children... or not.

        Some people seem to be under the impression I took those with a smartphone or some such - they're welcome to attempt to haxxor my SD card and/or the fully non-smart non-wireless-enabled compact camera it resides in. Take your time, I'll wait...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Think of the children... or not.

          "Some people seem to be under the impression I took those with a smartphone or some such - they're welcome to attempt to haxxor my SD card and/or the fully non-smart non-wireless-enabled compact camera it resides in. Take your time, I'll wait..."

          So speaks a man who has somehow never heard of the word "burglars".

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Think of the children... or not.

        If the very purpose of taking this kind of picture is to share it with someone else or view it later, then you're likely to keep them around in some form, otherwise you can't use it.

        If you're thinking that it is safer not to put it online, yes it is, but not completely safe. Remember these celebrity videos stolen from their home? Smaller chance, but still a chance.

        1. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Think of the children... or not.

          "Remember these celebrity videos stolen from their home?"

          In most cases by the partner in boink, or some other trusted individual.

      3. Bob Dole (tm)

        Re: Think of the children... or not.

        >> ...provided I don't keep them online or some other place that can reasonably be expected to be hacked.

        ProTip: there is no such place.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Think of the children... or not.

      "...abstinence is the only answer"

      Not really. It's just a normal human activity; and like any other activity there are risks involved. It's relatively new, however, and the risks may not be that obvious to anyone not in the technology game. And the risks go way, way up when you're a young, attractive high-profile celebrity because there's more people who want to see you naked...a certain percentage of whom are going to be amoral with the necessary skills to ninja your phone. Get beyond a certain level of famous, and the result is pretty well inevitable unless you take countermeasures.

      Also, a big reason to take these photos in the first place is to send them to other people; which is doubling the risk. You're not only trusting their integrity; but their IT knowledge and personal security too. Plus the integrity of everyone who could get hold of the transmission.

      The choices are: i) Don't do it; ii) Put the effort in and learn what you're doing; or iii) Live with the results. Given that the people involved were young and in varying stages of love/drunkenness, the second option is the least likely to happen.

      I don't think anyone's career is going to be harmed by this. The response has been mostly sympathetic.

      1. P. Lee

        Re: Think of the children... or not.

        >>"...abstinence is the only answer"

        >Not really.

        I think they meant "abstaining from taking the pictures."

        But your anaylsis is correct - pictures are generally taken and sent by those who haven't yet realised the value of their reputation.

      2. Lamont Cranston
        Unhappy

        Re: "It's just a normal human activity"

        Really? Not taking pictures of my junk makes me abnormal?

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Typical CNN-level broadcast

    And the "expert" is highly qualified as well - for CNN that is.

    1. Zog_but_not_the_first
      Happy

      Re: Typical CNN-level broadcast

      Cut the chap some slack. He might have been a taxi driver who was mistaken for a technology expert.

      1. Zog_but_not_the_first
        Joke

        Re: Typical CNN-level broadcast

        A downvote!? Only kidding Mr Goma.

      2. Rick Giles
        Trollface

        Re: Typical CNN-level broadcast

        "Cut the chap some slack. He might have been a taxi driver who was mistaken for a technology expert."

        I doubt that. Even a taxi driver knows more than the tw@'s at CNN.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I AM 4CHAN!

    And so is my brother...

    1. fixit_f

      Re: I AM 4CHAN!

      I'm Brian - and so's my wife

  6. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    The other trick that stumps all hackers

    Turn the keyboard upside down and type: pɹoʍƨƨɐd

    1. Forget It

      Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

      if your not a member of the magic circle - pls do say how...

      Edit: oh I see:

      http://www.upsidedowntext.com/

      1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

        Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

        Nothing magical, just (ab)use of UTF-8 text. This page http://stackoverflow.com/questions/2995340/how-does-u%CA%8Dop-%C7%9Dp%E1%B4%89sdn-text-work explains it in a bit more detail. The encoding of the above URL gives a hint as to how this works.

        Edit: Looks like you found an automatic online tool to do it for you...

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. VinceH

      Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

      Or use the double bluff of using all asterisks for your pa$$word.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Mark #255
      Headmaster

      Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

      pɹoʍƨƨɐd

      Your "s"s have been mirrored, not rotated.

      1. Def Silver badge

        Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

        Your "s"s have been mirrored, not rotated.

        Shhh... that's how you confuse the hackers.

        1. Whiskers
          Facepalm

          Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

          I recently invented a variation on that (by accident of course); set up the password and then change the keyboard map. Well it kept /me/ out for a few minutes ...

      2. Trigonoceps occipitalis

        Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

        In that case start with "pa55word" then rotate.

    5. DarkWalker

      Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

      I prefer to use simple, impossible to forget words, such as supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

      (Though when I was using that I did pick a l33tspeak rendition of it and included two misspellings. Well, the misspellings were not intentional, but they did make the password harder to crack.)

    6. Rick Giles
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: The other trick that stumps all hackers

      Icon says it all...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's difficult to remember all those passwords

    So I like to use a handy aide-memoire, such as the name of my dog.

    That works very well, but now I am having trouble getting &eT6x_!"%pZ#12 to come back when I call him.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

      Nicely done, see icon; thankfully I have a washable keyboard for this, (and possibly one or two other) eventualities.

      More seriously : I'm always astounded at the lazyness of the media around tech issues. There are now millions upon millions of people on this planet who have a basic understanding of day to day techie stuff. Can the BBC / CNN / UK GOV not manage to track one down? Just one?

      1. big_D Silver badge

        Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

        That would require them to understand how to use a computer and Google...

      2. Gannettt

        Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

        And the annoying way presenters seem to revel in their ignorance of tech: "So, what's this internet selfie thing all about? I haven't got a clue about anything like that!"

      3. ecofeco Silver badge

        Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

        "There are now millions upon millions of people on this planet who have a basic understanding of day to day techie stuff. Can the BBC / CNN / UK GOV not manage to track one down? Just one?"

        Like most anything else days, it's not what know, but who you and what school you went to. If you aren't part of the club or inner circle, well, you just will not do.

        Now think about recent events in the news.

        Yes. Yes we are all effed.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

        I'd lay odds that their expert has a smashing resume on LinkedIn.

      5. stanimir

        Re: It's difficult to remember all those passwords

        To my astonishment BBC has improved greatly - their coverage of Defcon was totally spot on, no apparent mistakes either.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  8. Mr_Pitiful

    Who told CNN

    That every luser out there uses password as their password?

  9. Nigel Brown

    What does CNN stand for?

    I'm guessing it's Cartoon Network (something)

    1. AndrewInIreland

      Re: What does CNN stand for?

      Clown Noob News?

  10. Sir Runcible Spoon
    Joke

    Discriminatory Pisswords

    "change the "s" to a pound sign, which looks like this: pa££word."

    Are you taking the pith?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Discriminatory Pisswords

      Are you taking the pi££?

      FTFY.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon

        Re: Discriminatory Pisswords

        "FTFY."

        Except if I had written it like that it wouldn't have looked like I had a lisp now would it?

        Fix Fail. :)

      2. Dr Scrum Master
        Headmaster

        Re: Discriminatory Pisswords

        Are you taking the pi££$?

        FTFTFY

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Discriminatory Pisswords

      Nope he's taking the pound !

  11. MonsieurInconnu

    Not forgetting regional variations

    So in the grim North it changes from 'password' to 'pa££word'

    However dahn Sahf it would change from 'parseword' to 'par£eword'

    1. phuzz Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Not forgetting regional variations

      Up north it's just pa£word, because they're skint.

      1. MassiveBob

        Re: Not forgetting regional variations

        Further north, it might become pa??word because it looks like they have not yet figured out which currency to use if Scotland becomes independent.

        1. John Hughes

          Re: Not forgetting regional variations

          Further north, it might become pa??word because it looks like they have not yet figured out which currency to use if Scotland becomes independent.

          Then that'd be Pa¤¤word.

          Isn't "¤" the most uselss latin/unicode symbol ever?

          The currency sign (¤) is a character used to denote an unspecified currency.

          ... It was proposed by Italy.

          Ah, that explains it.

      2. tony2heads
        Coat

        Re: Not forgetting regional variations

        Aye but we had it tough! 'papword' was the most we could afford

        coat! Its just a piece of newspaper

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: Not forgetting regional variations

      So in the grim North it changes from 'password' to 'pa££word'

      MonsieurInconnu,

      It's all your fault! Now the voices in my head sound like Sean Bean shouting, "passsword ye buggers!"

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well to be fair...

    pa$$word would take twice as long to crack because its probably second in the dictionary list.

    *facepalm*

    1. DropBear
      Joke

      Re: Well to be fair...

      Obviously - that's why I don't even bother changing "password" to something else: they'll expect that. But they'll NEVER guess that my username is... us€rnam€ !

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Waiting to get flamed here, but...

    Am I the only one who find the idea of celebs who happily show acres of flesh and simulate having sex with other celebs when being paid lots of money to do so, getting upset about having more of the same publicised without their consent, just a little hypocritical?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Waiting to get flamed here, but...

      I do kind of see your point, especially considering one of Ms Lawrence's more recent roles has included her wearing nothing but blue paint and some 'carefully placed' bits of plastic.

    2. Tiny Iota
      FAIL

      Re: Waiting to get flamed here, but...

      Of course, and this is why no one who works in IT is EVER annoyed when people ask for computer help in their free time.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Waiting to get flamed here, but...

        Actually I think I see your point: since their bodies ARE their tradeable skills the ire is directed at the freebie rather than the privacy?

  14. ColonelClaw
    FAIL

    Seriously CNN? Chri$t on a fucking bike

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Chri$t on a fucking bike"

      I think that may be an arrestable offense these days.

      1. Flat Phillip

        I think that may be an arrestable offense these days

        Then nab him and stick him up on a cross, that'll teach him and all his cyclophilliac mates.

    2. Darryl

      ...but might not be bad as a password...

  15. Slartybardfast

    Non-technical news outlets

    .. and we have the Daily Fail today telling their readers that when people upload to the Cloud they aren't uploading their photos to a real cloud.

    http://www.theguardian.com/media/mediamonkeyblog/2014/sep/03/daily-mail-icloud-celebrity-photos-hacked-naked?CMP=twt_gu

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: Non-technical news outlets

      You just left me with a mental image of Essex Girl looking up at the sky wondering which of the pwetty wabbit cloud shapes is her photo.

  16. Dylbot

    This gave me a headache on exactly half of my brain.

    Also queue "I'm Spartacus!" style hijinks.

  17. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    I'm with French on this

    le_pa€€word

    Take that, haxx0rs!!

    1. Steve the Cynic

      Re: I'm with French on this

      "le_pa€€word"

      Dude, get it right: le_mot_de_pa€€e

      1. John Hughes

        Re: I'm with French on this

        Dude, get it right: le_mot_de_pa€€e

        L€ mot d€ pass€, surely?

        Traditionalists might prefer something with a "₣" in it.

        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

          Re: I'm with French on this

          OK, thanks. Advice taken.

          £€_mot_d€_₣uckin_pa$$€ it is then.

  18. Tyrion
    Boffin

    Misuse of Word

    They're all clueless. That's not hacking. Hacking is the act of changing the behaviour of a program by modifying its source code. Cracking is the act of bypassing the security of a system, usually by guessing a password (dictionary attack) or exploiting some kind of inherent and superficial weakness. That's my definition anyway.

    1. Dr Who

      Re: Misuse of Word

      The meaning of hacker in popular language has come to be the same as cracker. The two are now pretty much interchangeable. We the congoscenti will either have to find an alternative to replace the original meaning of hacker. How about code artiste or vim jockey or extreme keyboarder or even god forbid programmer? More likely we'll just have to be smug in our superior knowledge.

      If I'm talking to a non-technical person I always say hacker when I mean cracker. Life's too short to fight the crowd on something which makes no difference to anyone.

      Language does change. The meaning of gorgeous is literally "like a pile of of gore". How it got to mean beautiful over the aeons is anyone's guess.

      1. gregthecanuck
        Facepalm

        Re: Misuse over Misuse

        Congoscenti?

        Some sort of African way to sniff out security issues?

      2. Elmer Phud

        Re: Misuse of Word

        "The meaning of hacker in popular language has come to be the same as cracker."

        By the lazy press and those who would rather rant at all things INTERNET!!!!

      3. Vic

        Re: Misuse of Word

        The meaning of gorgeous is literally "like a pile of of gore".

        It isn't - it comes from the French word "gorge" meaning "throat". So the meaning is really "throaty"...

        Vic.

      4. Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: Misuse of Word

        > The meaning of gorgeous is literally "like a pile of of gore"

        Not, according to a usually reliable source.

        late 15c., "splendid, showy" (of clothing), from Middle French gorgias "elegant, fashionable," of unknown origin; perhaps literally "necklace" (and thus "fond of jewelry"), from Old French gorge "bosom, throat," also "something adorning the throat."

        Edit: Vic beat me to it!

      5. Captain DaFt

        Re: Misuse of Word

        "We the congoscenti will either have to find an alternative to replace the original meaning of hacker. How about code artiste or vim jockey or extreme keyboarder or even god forbid programmer?"

        Well, I've always liked the sound of Kludge-meister!

        1. Stevie

          Re: Kludge-meister!

          "Bodger".

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Misuse of Word

      Misusing Word(tm) is definitely hacking in my book.... :-)

    3. Long John Brass

      Re: Misuse of Word

      Hacking is the process of making ANY system(computer or otherwise) do something interesting/novel that it was not intended to do. A hacker is someone who works such magic.

      Cracking is the bypassing/breaking of security.

      Thus a hacker may well crack the security on a door, safe or computer system

      A hacker also invented the steam, petrol, diesel engine, hackers invent lots of things

      A hacker that makes a lot of money is sometimes called an entrepreneur or when in the company of less monied hackers, a wanker

  19. Google

    So many gems

    "your files floating in the ether" Sprinkled with fairy dust?

    "hacking is against the law" You don't say

    "running a password app" download it from the itunes store!

    We could go on..

  20. Amorous Cowherder
    Facepalm

    So Brett's will now be "a$$hole" ???

    Tch!

  21. Captain Hogwash
    Stop

    Re: "Here in the UK..."

    ...which looks like this: pa##word.

    Or so we've been told by disembodied American voices for a couple of decades now.

    1. VinceH
      Joke

      Re: "Here in the UK..."

      I think that's what they mean by hashing your password.

  22. John Sanders
    Trollface

    My password...

    Is "test", which means I'm safe, as only people with password: "password" are being hacked.

    CNN has been a sad joke for a while.

  23. Cipher

    As long as they never see...

    ... xkcd on passwords there should be plenty of work for all...

    1. Anonymaus Cowark

      Re: As long as they never see...

      get an upvote for the mandatory xkcd reference

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: As long as they never see...

      unfortunately the 44 Character password as suggested in xkcd is not usuable for most application because often the password is restricted to 12 10 or even 8 characters.

      But is does have to inlcude a number so pa$5word is often used by the user

      and when the password has to be changed after 6 months the number is counted upwards...

      and so on ... til 9 because the password history has a length of 6

      Then it starts again from the beginning.

      Would you restart with five, one or zero?

  24. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
    Happy

    The chap's not heard of 4chan. Does that make him ignorant, or fortunate?

    It is very sad when the mainstream media talk about most specialist subjects. But they are particularly pants on IT, which is rubbish considering how much they depend on DTP, t'internet, Google, Twit&Face, mobile phones and laptops.

    1. Grikath

      AH, but you're forgetting the pecking order of showbusiness... IT is just about the lowest form of life as seen from the Floor, hell they're not even directly associated with it, and they can probably not even comprehend the fact that there just may be people around that actually know Stuff.

      Even if someone does, the mere thought of giving someone that low on the Ladder actual airtime will probably cause a couple of heart attacks and aneurisms.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        True with TV. But I was actually thinking journalists, epsecially the print ones. Who write copy on computers and tablets, have smartphones, are always pirating copy off Facebook and Twitter, plus whatever photos or blogs they can grab. And all busily Googling and Wiki-ing as well. You'd hope that a little bit of knowledge would rub off in this process...

  25. Swiss
    Trollface

    How ridiculous!

    No one actually uses Password as their actual Password when it is far easier to type qwerty.

    If qwerty is your password, I would suggest to use an upper case Q and suffix the numeral 1 so if forced to change it you can increment it by 1 each time.

  26. sisk

    And people wonder why I don't trust mainstream American news outlets.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just went to log in to upvote a comment

    Tried many passwords. Realised mine was indeed 'password'.

    I like to increase the complexity based on the importance of the data behind it. I guess I don't value posting comments on the register too much.

    Think I'll still change it

    1. gazthejourno (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Just went to log in to upvote a comment

      I really hope you have changed your password in the two hours between your posting this and me approving it...

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    DOH!!!!

    I set my password as "incorrect", that way, if I get it wrong, a pop-up gives me the correct answer.

    1. Mike Flugennock
      Facepalm

      Re: DOH!!!!

      "I set my password as 'incorrect', that way, if I get it wrong, a pop-up gives me the correct answer."

      Crafty bastard.

  29. Ashton Black

    Passwords.....

    For a few years, I've been bugging my better half to use a Password Vault. (KeePass and LastPass for example, local, with a synced backup copy on an external drive). Then the other day she showed me the little book she uses and keeps in her handbag, I had no answer (other than if she loses the book), really, since she uses a word (she remembers) and a number/letter/symbol sequence from the book for each site. Can't argue with that.

    Sometimes, us techies can be taught a thing by the non-techies.

    1. Elmer Phud

      Re: Passwords.....

      On-line password storage is fine -- if you can get to the server.

    2. sisk

      Re: Passwords.....

      That's actually along the lines of the method I've been hearing the security experts I respect recommend for years now. I have a password card that I use for my most important stuff. It has a grid with the top row and left column being the alphabet and 0-9 and the rest random characters. I line up the first letter of the site name on the top with the last letter of the site name on the left, count off 15 characters from that point in the grid, and that's my password for that site. I only bother with it for things that would be devastating were my account to be breached, like my bank. I don't actually have to pull it out very often. For any site I visit with any kind of regularity I end up memorizing the password whether I make an effort to or not.

  30. paulc
    Stop

    Not even cracking the passwords...

    just using the "Questions" in the password reset facility... some people are actully using their real mother's maiden name of dog's name... and for celebs, that stuff is all googleable...

  31. earl grey
    Trollface

    what idiot uses 1 2 3 4 5 for a password

    well, there must be a few

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: what idiot uses 1 2 3 4 5 for a password

      1,2,3,4,5? That's the combination on my luggage!

      (obligatory Spaceballs reference!)

    2. sisk

      Re: what idiot uses 1 2 3 4 5 for a password

      Sadly, I know a few who used to. One of them pitched a fit when he gave me his password of 12345 (after being told I didn't want or need his password) and I immediately ticked the 'must change password on next logon' box on his account.

  32. Number6

    Europe

    I assume advice for Europeans is to change to "pa€€wort" or "motdepa€€e"

    1. Grikath

      Re: Europe

      only if you live down south..

      over here between the Dikes it would be "W8chtw00rd" ..

      come to think of it.. "Y0uSh4llN0tP4ss" would be a nice one ;)

  33. Elmer Phud

    Securitai

    Gawd nose what they'd do if they had to use a system that checked for double characters, any real names,series of numbers (including Pi), password used within the last two years, minimum 10 characters and others.

    It was a system that allowed access to anywhere on a circuit - and you could re-boot an entire exchange if you really wanted to.

    (It got so tedious trying to find a new password every four weeks that most people wrote down the password and previous ones.)

  34. Rob 44

    Passpattern

    Am I the only person that does this?

    Allow me to explain. I don't use any names or words of any kind at all. Ever.

    Instead I use patterns on the keyboard. Each site has a different pattern and combination of uppercase and lowercase lettering and a few numbers thrown in for good measure. So for example (purely and example) if it was twitter I would use 12QWasZXweSDZX simple pattern, easier to remember a pattern too.

    1. Darryl

      Re: Passpattern

      I'll bet that's fun to type on a touchscreen phone

      1. Rob 44

        Re: Passpattern

        Piece of cake. But then I am using a note 3 with a rather large keyboard.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Passpattern

        It's dead easy here. After doing it a few time it's easier than using passage, with its own pattern followed by scrolling, copy, then paste, if the site even allows it, yada, yada. I'm the least competent at mechanical things (except design), but excel at pattern recognition.

        For the junk sites, I use one of a few junk passwords. The important ones get at least 56 bits of entropy.

    2. Trainee grumpy old ****

      Re: Passpattern

      Works so long as you don't need to use a foreign keyboard, say, when on holiday.

    3. Mike Flugennock

      Re: Passpattern

      All my passwords for my important stuff are generated by the random character generator in cPanel.

      Here's where the "passpattern" bit comes in. In the beginning, I had to type the newly-generated passwords by reading them off a page in my notebook, but after a while, I discovered that I was memorizing them through repetition -- not by learning the actual character sequence, but through "muscle memory", that is, by remembering keystroke finger positions, if that makes any sense.

      Kinda the same way I'm typing now, as I learned to "touch type" in high school in preparation for all those research papers I'd have to write in college.

    4. NullReference Exception

      Re: Passpattern

      Be careful... some of the more common keyboard patterns have found their way into password brute-force dictionaries. The folks at SANS recently started monitoring the passwords used during SSH brute-force scanning attacks. The top two are of course "admin" and "password", but you don't have to go very far down the list before you start seeing things like "1qaz2wsx" and "123qwe!@#". See https://isc.sans.edu/ssh.html

  35. Arachnoid

    Discrimination.........??????

    Im feeling left out wasn't anybody posted the images I just uploaded of me in me Birthday suit?

    1. Lapun Mankimasta

      Re: Discrimination.........??????

      Ah, but you left out the tie. Face it, birthday suits without ties are just not cool any more.

  36. Charles Manning

    Basically

    If you're doing dumb shit that depends on a password for security...

    and you depend on CNN for security advice...

    You might as well just post it straight on wikipedia.

  37. mIRCat
    Coat

    My luggage combination is still safe for now.

    "* Here in the UK, people with the password "password" should no doubt change the "s" to a pound sign, which looks like this: pa££word."

    Thanks, El Reg. Now I'll have to change my password, again

    Mine is the one with the "encryption" in the pocket.

  38. ecofeco Silver badge

    CNN?

    CNN lost all credibility after the first Gulf War. They make Fox News look good.

    That's pretty damn scary right there.

    1. Mike Flugennock

      Re: CNN?

      "CNN lost all credibility after the first Gulf War. They make Fox News look good..."

      Hah, right. CNN wishes they could be as bad as Fox.

  39. Mike Flugennock

    Perhaps type "password" with a Brooklyn accent?

    You know, like "passwoid"?

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Or..... Just use the Klingon "mu'wIj" instead, thanks bing translator.

  41. Old Handle
    Trollface

    :Sigh: pa$$word, seriously?

    That'll hold off the hackers for maybe 0.01 seconds, if you're lucky. What you need to do, for maximum security, is spell your password entirely with currency symbols:

    ₱؋₴$₩¤₹₫

  42. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    My preference: Գաղտնաբառ

  43. Lapun Mankimasta

    pa££word

    or you could ufe the dreaded paffword that nobody'f going to gueff:

    PAFFWORD

  44. Joerg

    4chan .. highly likely some competitors employees ...

    4chan .. highly likely some competitors employees ... behind just a nickname. The only question is which competitors... Microsoft ? Samsung? Blackberry? Google?

  45. Tatsky

    We do all realise that this is just a massive marketing ploy for Cameron Diaz' latest rom-com outing don't we?

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I use ###########, no one will ever think of trying that

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