* Posts by Z Ippy

18 publicly visible posts • joined 16 Sep 2013

Blood, snot and fear: Why the travelling lone tech reporter should always knock twice

Z Ippy

I seem to get this a lot... :-(

Thrice in a hotel in Southampton booked by work.

1. An empty room save for a very expensive cabin / laptop bag left on the bed. Owner had just booked the room and left it there. I insisted the hotel call the police to remove it. They reluctantly did.

2. Arrived quite late and walked in on a single woman with kids who was understandably very upset.

3. Walked in on a youngish couple. Got very red faced.

I refuse to stay there now.

In Belfast once, with a bloke just out of the shower.

I now knock on the door before entering and always use the security locks.

Mind you I wonder what would have happened if someone had walked in on me when I was in the States taking an angle grinder to a laptop's HD to destroy it on the instructions of my employer (posted elsewhere on this site).

Never let something so flimsy as a locked door to the computer room stand in the way of an auditor on the warpath

Z Ippy

Re: so easy to get in

Driving home from a night out a long way from home I passed a garage with a car I had seen advertised in the local rag and stopped to look it over.

It was about midnight and a police car was passing. They did stop and asked what I was doing and I said that I was just looking over the car as I was interested in it.

The police officer was quite rude and said something along the lines of "well if there is any vandalism reported on the vehicles, we know who to look up".

So I told them to come and have a look now, which they reluctantly did.

Defense against the Darknet, or how to accessorize to defeat video surveillance

Z Ippy

Till they make avoiding the cameras illegal

This chap avoided the cameras so was stopped by the Rozzers and got a fine for his troubles - you avoided the cameras were going to get you anyway fine....!


First featured on Not The Nine O'clock News in c1982 - Arrested for wearing a loud shirt in public B-/

User secures floppies to a filing cabinet with a magnet, but at least they backed up daily... right?

Z Ippy

Modern Data Transfer

Four years ago at a +£1bn turnover company I witnessed a month end sales report printed on piano paper and ended up being about 12 inches thick (green and white lines) put in a folder and passed to a team who would take a section of pages each and manually type the data in to Excel for analysis, totalling up by depot, customer etc.

Some spread sheets in the accounts department were over 100mb in size. I refused to check them for errors - it would be impossible to spot an incorrect formula.

Funnily enough the company didn't survive.

Ex-Mozilla CTO: US border cops demanded I unlock my phone, laptop at SF airport – and I'm an American citizen

Z Ippy

Re: Banking On Trust

We left the saw and workbench in the hotel room and used some polythene sheets to protect the furniture, walls, beds, etc.

The bits of the laptop were left in a petrol (gas) station waste bin found on the way back to the airport. There was nothing bigger than a thimble and most of it was much smaller.

I recall the laptop cost about USD500 and I wondered about the cost effectiveness of it, but it was insignificant really to the cost of lost or compromised data or even fighting a legal case to get the equipment back.

I do wonder what the hotel staff thought when they found the workbench and power saw in the hotel room and was amazed when no one knocked on our door whilst the cutting was going on!

Z Ippy

Banking On Trust

About 10 years ago, as a lowly bank bod I had to visit a client in the States to review their business and collect some data.

There was a real fear that our proprietary pricing and quotes would be given to our competitors, especially as we lost a contract shortly after a recent incident where a colleagues laptop was searched at the airport on a previous visit so the next time we were given a 80gb Ipod and a credit card and told to go and buy the same model of laptop from BestBuy or similar when we arrived. We were given the model number etc and our IT department had checked availability.

The Ipod had a file that we loaded on to the computer and when run we would burn a boot CD-rom and install our employer's system on the new laptop, including their build of Windows, VPN details etc.

We could then download the data we needed over a VPN.

When finished we saved our files to the bank via VPN and destroyed the laptop with the HD getting physically shredded by us, with a circular saw and a workmate bench.

Romford Station, smile! You're in London cops' final facial recog 'trial'

Z Ippy

Re: so many concerns - about what?

[Quote]Only people who have something to hide should worry about stupid hi-tech toys. Ask guys for your picture and have a fun![/Quote]

So when they come to fit a camera to your living room, to your bathroom and to your bedroom, you will of course allow them, as you have nothing to hide!

Z Ippy

Covering Your Face or Using Glasses With Lights.......

Will be considered to be "Perverting the Course of Justice", for which could mean life in prison!

Drivers who use lasers to defeat speed cameras are so charged, though the sentences are not likely to be that long. How does 8 months sound: https://northyorkshire.police.uk/news/laser-jammer-prison/

TalkTalk's £1.5bn 3-million home fibre broadband hopes on ice for now

Z Ippy

Broadband in the country is crap.

I am about 100 meters from a FTTC cabinet and can't get any speed higher than 1mb as the cabinet is full with no potential for expansion. Two doors up have a connection to a different cabinet with masses of availability but Openreach can't or wont switch us to the new cabinet.

BT's website confirms FTTC is available until you try and order it, when it then offers good old broadband.

At least TT and Sky are honest and confirm only BB is available.

I run the home broadband on a 4G unlimited SIM and MiFi device. 129gb used so far this month (21 days in) but max speed in this area is 4gb when no one else is on their phones and the MiFi device only allows 5 devices to be connected at once.

Lloyds Banking Group to splash £3bn on tech

Z Ippy

Lloyds Record Keeping

I worked with Lloyds for 11 years before I wanted a change and applied for a job at another business.

All went well, I passed the interview and back-ground checks, except one; Lloyds had claimed that they had no record of me and therefore would not confirm that I worked for them. I wasn't a contractor, I was a salaried bod. This went on for 3 weeks, gave them my name, address, office I worked in, manager, NI number, employee number, copies of my pay-slips etc. but they still told my new employer (who was duty bound to get a reference) that they had no record of me.

Luckily I found a senior director at the new employer who sort of remembered me from when he was at Lloyds and I had to do some menial chores for him.

I wouldn't trust them with anything now.

Lenovo spits out retro ThinkPads for iconic laptop's 25th birthday

Z Ippy

One Work T420 has outlasted Three Personal Dells!

It is now over 5 years old (an i5) and is still ok, having been upgraded in 2016 to Windows 7. I have had to change the battery once.

In that time, I have had 3 Dells for personal use, they have all had problems, which effectively wrote the machines off, mainly to do with the power socket failing and requiring a solder or new motherboard and this includes an XPS model which died 1 month after the 3 year extended warranty expired. The other two were Inspirons.

Not going to buy a Dell ever. Would consider a ThinkPad for personal use, but as they are expensive, I might have to go for a re-conditioned one.

Vodafone won't pay employee expenses for cups of coffee

Z Ippy

Not Really Saving Costs

Employees will find ways to screw the company in other ways.

I get stuck in cheap hotels, but they charge for car parking and dinner is expensive to make up for the cheap rooms. Work doesn't see the connection of course.

This week a pint of cola, a burger and a desert to my room cost £30! I can only claim a maximum of £20 per day so when working away its either dinner or lunch but rarely breakfast as most hotels charge £15 for that alone.

It makes me less efficient being hungry and customers notice not stopping for lunch and ask why.

PC repair chap lets tech support scammer log on to his PC. His Linux PC

Z Ippy

Re: For the phone scammers ...

Conservatory Sales....

I was pestered and pestered by double glazing sales and got fed up and one day said yes I would love a conservatory.

Got them to tell me all about the styles they did and the colours the plastic came in etc. etc. Took about 10 minutes.

They then asked for my address so the "consultant" could visit.

Flat 16, Bermuda Towers......

Would you believe it? The Museum of Failure contains quite a few pieces of technology

Z Ippy

Perfume vs Oil

I would prefer my girlfriend to be wearing just Chanel No 5 to just engine oil, but then I'm not a computer geek, so what do I know!


COP BLOCKED: Uber app thwarted arrests of its drivers by fooling police with 'ghost cars'

Z Ippy


"If you have dirty hands then eventually the truth is going to come out regardless. If Uber does go down in flames (which seems possible) and the $66B valuation gets flushed down the toilet then perhaps the VC and hedge funds will start to look for safer investment vehicles (sic) instead of placing astronomical bets on startups.

This would be a good thing."

Problem is that its often our pension money at stake!

Z Ippy

Perverting The Course Of Justice

Carries a life sentence in the UK. Just saying!

Accountancy software firm Sage breached in apparent insider attack

Z Ippy

They Can't Limit Access to Your Own Data

See http://www.computerevidence.co.uk/Cases/CMA.htm

"R v Richard Goulden

Southwark Crown Court The Times 10 June 1992 Computer Weekly 18 June 1992

Computer Misuse Act 1990, ss 1, 3 Unauthorised modification - Denial of access

Software contractor in dispute with company over unpaid fees installed access control security package. Denial of access by witholding password. Alleged damage of £36,000. Defendant convicted. Conditional discharge and £1650 fine."

OK, so we paid a bill late, but did BT have to do this?

Z Ippy

Same here

>>>Had Openreach outside my house fixing my neighbours phone. Thank goodness I check our line before they left the site as in the process of fixing my neighbours line they'd taken down ours. Doh!

Was working at home on a dedicated broadband connection. The connection went down so I walked to the phone to call the office and saw the BT man in their man hole. I asked him if he had cut my connection, which he denied!

1 week later a different engineer turns up and I happen to catch him, says my line was cut!

Was it malicious?