* Posts by Mystereed

56 posts • joined 9 Jan 2015

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Pure frustration: What happens when someone uses your email address to sign up for PayPal, car hire, doctors, security systems and more

Mystereed

Used to get emails at work from a woman thinking she was emailing her husband

Don't get your hopes, up - nothing salacious! Can't remember if I have posted this before, but a woman who works at the same company as me was emailing her husband (who has same name as me) and her system picked up my internal address instead of his external one the first time and kept reusing it as default autosuggest.

First email I got was because she had booked return train tickets with the source destination the wrong way round and asking what could she do? I helpfully sent her the website link of the train company page where tickets can be adjusted if you have the right traveller info, thinking it was someone just asking for help. When she then wanted ME to change the tickets for her, I realised the mixup and set her right - she was most apologetic.

A few weeks later I got got an email suggesting a BBQ that weekend? I politely turned it down as I was in another city and that her husband might get jealous? She replied that she had realised her mistake as soon as she hit send and apologised again.

Another few weeks later, she emailed me to say she was going home sick as she had an upset stomach. I told her I was sorry she was not feeling well and that maybe the food at the BBQ may not have been cooked properly?

She was even more mortified by that exchange - I then pointed out that when Outlook (which is what we use at work) starts suggesting an entry, a little cross will appear at the far right of that line. Click that cross and Outlook won't suggest that one again until you have typed it in full again. Haven't had another email from her since, hopefully because the suggestion worked but maybe the stomach upset was more serious than we both thought?

Billionaire's Pagani Pa-gone-i after teen son takes hypercar out for a drive, trashes it

Mystereed

Re: Ask any actuary

The reason that the premium may go down a bit when you add a partner could be that then there are two of you on the policy and can share the driving if going a distance or swap if one is feeling unwell?

Tech support scammer dialed random number and Australian Police’s cybercrime squad answered

Mystereed

We've had three so far

The first one only lasted a few seconds because I got too excited and said "I've been waiting ages for one of these calls", when my other half handed me the phone saying it was someone from Openreach. Click... Doh!

I think they are on a timer because the next two hung up at 20 minutes, almost to the second, having made no meaningful progress. I've never been brave enough to let them actually get in to my network, just wasted their time by pretending to be doing things which take time. I know enough to know you have to be pretty good to be totally safe when letting someone run arbitary code. I haven't set up a VM on an isolated network segment yet, maybe when I retire I'll investigate some best practice disposable setups.

I just keep polite and misunderstand what they are saying or take it too literally:

Them - "Can you go to a device which you use to access the internet?"

Me - "Yes, no problem."

Them "What does it show on the screen?"

Me -"It's all black"

Them - "What do you mean"

Me - "It isn't switched on"

Them - "Switch it on please" (this is when you can both hear them get interested that they have someone compliant and also frustrated because they realise it will take a while).

Them - "What does it show on the screen?"

Me - "The news"

After a few more questions I give away that it is the TV, which I use to access the Internet to watch Netflix. Then I suggest I use a laptop?

Them - "What does it show?"

Me - "It's black - it's not switched on" (this is where the real frustration starts to creep in to their voice)

It takes ages to boot

I then pretend to try the websites like teamviewer which they want me to open. They all fail with a blocked content message. I then helpfully suggest that it might be due to it being my work laptop which I've been told has a lot of security 'stuff' on it, should I use my personal one?

I then do the "What does it show?" & "Black, it isn't switched on" and long time to boot loop again.

I'm not sure what happens next as that has been the 20 minute limit where they just hang up. I assume they just give up and move on to the next attempt on their robocaller, but as long as I am not doing anything important, wasting their time gives me a little bit of pleasure.

I think giving them a bit of an adrenaline rush by allowing them to vent their anger is wrong - just keep them frustrated and depressed about how slow and thick these westerners can be (they have all had Indian accents, though the two I strung along were called Dave & Alex). They probably get paid by results, wasting their time will cause them stress, allowing them to vent will release it? Play the long game - give them ulcers or other stress related conditions!

Finally done with all those Patch Tuesday updates? Think again! Here's 33 Cisco bug fixes, with five criticals

Mystereed
Joke

Re: 443 bugs

I used to use 404 on mine, but they kept getting lost :-(

You can get a mechanical keyboard for £45. But should you? We pulled an Aukey KM-G6 out of the bargain bin

Mystereed

Not all have printed characters

I have a similar keyboard to the one reviewed, branded TECKNET. The keys have translucent inserts for the characters - the led lights shine through them.

The leds are the only bugbear on the keyboard. Who in their right mind wants flashing or strobing keyboards? When the key is accidently pressed to select a different lighting style (the ScrLK button), it takes 8 more presses to get back to the 'constantly on' option. Which I invariably overshoot because it has p'd me off and I'm bashing it :-)

Northrop Grumman's space zombie slayer grants Intelsat 901 five more years in orbit

Mystereed

Re: "heads off to assist other client spacecraft"

Nope - "The vehicle has a 15-year design life with the ability to perform numerous dockings and undockings during its life span."

Source - https://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/mev-1.htm

Is that Bullet for Me? Redundo clock is ticking for UK staff at both divisions of IBM's Services arm

Mystereed

That share scheme sounds a bit unfair

and also ripe for exploitation by management.

Fair to say if someone leaves by explicit choice - i.e. resigns, they get cancelled, but if somebody gets made redundant (even voluntarily) or retires due to age, sickness etc, then the shares should still vest.

That's what makes you hackable: Please, baby. Stop using 'onedirection' as a password

Mystereed

Re: 1-2-3-4-5?

I caught my 6-yr old son trying to log in to my system a few years back.

He was typing in a row of asterisks, because he thought that was what I was typing.

Can't trust anyone.

I have explained to him now he has his own setup how to create memorable passwords which are hard to crack.

BT: UK.gov ruling on Huawei will cost us half a billion pounds over next 5 years

Mystereed

No more than 35%?

Is that by number of boxes, capacity or cost?

Lots of wiggle/weasel room there - they could maybe get half the infrastructure from Huawei for 35% of the total cost?

Or install small non-Huawei kit in lots of locations with small capacity needs and then get beefier Huawei kit where it will actually be more cost effective in busier locations?

Bad targets drive bad behaviours?

London's Westminster Council wins appeal against phonebooth-cum-massive-digital-advert

Mystereed

How about...

...allowing them if the adverts can only be seen by people actually inside an enclosed phone booth? That would stop everyone else getting distracted by them?

The companies probably wouldn't want to deploy them with that condition though, which would prove they are just trying to get around the regs.

Attention! Very important science: Tapping a can of fizzy beer does... absolutely nothing

Mystereed

The real rule is...

...to give the one you dropped to your mate and get yourself another one?

UK parcel firm Yodel plugs tracking app's random yaps about where on map to snap up strangers' tat

Mystereed

I found out I had a receptionist too

Their name is Grey Wheelie Bin.

5G SIM-swap attacks could be even worse for industrial IoT than now

Mystereed

Denial of service?

As well as maybe being able to pretend to be the original device, this would also be a denial of service - that original sim will stop working and the real IOT traffic which should be transferred will now either be lost or stuck?

Not an expert on this type of thing, but can that sim be brought back online with the original details or will someone have to physically put another one in? The second will be a major PITA, but the first could result in a tug-of-war, unless extra security is put in place? Plus what's the betting that the attacker would be the one to ask for extra security and the original owner then won't be able to get it back?

The Great IoT Protocol War may have been won: Thread's 1.2 release aims at business

Mystereed

Obligatory xkcd

https://xkcd.com/927/

FYI: Yeah, the cops can force your finger onto a suspect's iPhone to see if it unlocks, says judge

Mystereed

Fingerprints to gummies?

I think police are already allowed to take finger prints forcibly?

Are they then allowed to make gummy fingers from those images to attempt to unlock phones?

Obviously there are time limits involved, but just curious if they did get evidence via that method if it would be admissible?

UK transport's 'ludicrous' robocar code may 'put lives at risk'

Mystereed
Linux

Road Runner testing?

Now come on, who here wouldn't love to draw a curve onto the divider line up to a brick wall and paint a tunnel on it as a test of this technology?

Penguin looks a bit like Road Runner?

Europe taps Facebook, Google, Twitter on the shoulder. So about those promises to stamp out lies, bots, dodgy ads?

Mystereed

Rather than close the accounts...

...once identified as bogus, why not just black hole them so that nobody ever sees the content those accounts produce?

Maybe that way the scammers are less likely to move on to new accounts with a window of opportunity to rip off people before they get banned and they can also be used as a kind of honey pot (content on those accounts is highly dubious so that content being posted on another account is also more likely to be dodgy too)?

Or maybe they only ever use the accounts for a few hours anyway - based on the numbers, there has got to be some kind of automation in use there for sure? Why not have a grace period after creation of an account where certain functions are not allowed or throttled. A proper business can wait a day or two to get their new name up and running before they pump out dozens of tweets/posts/blogs - scammers might actually get affected?

There would be the added benefit of being able to track accounts which search for the content to check it is actually there - or do scammers not have test teams?

Goddamn the Pusher man: Nominet kicks out domain name hijack bid

Mystereed

How about some grace time after expiry?

If a domain has been owned for a couple of years, how about having an embargo on it being picked up by someone new for a month or so? If you really don't want it, you can give permission for someone to have it early?

Forget dumping games designers for AI – turns out it takes two to tango

Mystereed

Marketing name for this technique?

I read something recently which described this kind of arrangement as being a Centaur.

That sounded a bit better than pantomime cow, which would make you more like to wonder which half you were going to be - the head or the other end?

Nutanix shares briefly wobble over Google server appliance fears

Mystereed

Weasel words?

Not for external sale - does that mean they will be rented out instead?

Self-driving cars will be safe, we're testing them in a massive AI Sim

Mystereed
Joke

Wile E. Coyote included?

Will they be able to test what happens if someone paints a curving central road line up to a painted-on tunnel entrance on a brick wall?

The correct result should be that Road Runners can pass straight through the wall, but coyotes must either be splatted against the bricks or be run over by a truck coming through the fake tunnel.

Tech team trapped in data centre as hypoxic gas flooded in. Again

Mystereed

30 Seconds to comply...

I did some work once in a big data centre with a 30 second warning before 10 tons of CO2 would be released.

We were told if the alarm went off, don't walk to the exit - run as fast as you can, if the underfloor CO2 horns started blasting out the gas, the floor will resemble a Raiders of the Lost Ark scene, with tiles lifting up.

Luckily I was with someone when the lights on one end wall started flashing and a bell rang - it was just to let the site engineer know his desk phone was ringing in his office outside the hall.

Developer’s code worked, but not in the right century

Mystereed

Re: The Standard Date Format?

"I do like YYYY MM DD HH MM SS. "

We had a bug in a script which did a very similar thing to what you did (and a very easy mistake for humans to make) - the log file showed all updates at 7 minutes past the hour, none for any other minute.

It was July - We needed to use MI instead of MM for the minutes mask :-)

Cops fined £80,000 for revealing childhood abuse victims' names

Mystereed

Re: Pedantry

'The "Bcc:" field (where the "Bcc" means "Blind Carbon Copy") contains

addresses of recipients of the message whose addresses are not to be

revealed to other recipients of the message.'

Seems pretty explicit?

AI built to track you through walls because, er, Parkinsons?

Mystereed
Black Helicopters

So the weapons systems

or at the least the building blocks for them are all starting to come together?

Add this to the Slaughterbots (https://autonomousweapons.org/slaughterbots/) and they will know just which wall to blow a hole in to get to us :-(

They aren't real yet in case anyone gets immediately worried. Maybe we all need to practice crawling around on all fours like a bobcat so the AIs will ignore us?

Who will fix our Internal Banking Mess? TSB hires IBM amid online banking woes

Mystereed

Who has just a single account these days?

Another account with a buffer chunk of cash in case the main one goes down?

SpaceX finally Falcon flings NASA's TESS into orbit

Mystereed

Happy it is up safely...

...but seriously disappointed it didn't go up on the planned date as I was in Florida and we had managed to get in to the Kennedy Visitor Center car park that afternoon :-(

Had to fly back to the UK the next day. Argh!

Despite the headlines, Rudd's online terror takedown tool is only part of the solution

Mystereed

Whack-a-mole?

1. The machine learning algorithm gets trained using an existing set of known styles of video.

2. Deploy to live and start rejecting new videos which match criteria (I assume maybe the accounts also get flagged as potential producers of dodgy material and get suspended, rather than having special forces sent to where the user is logged on?).

3. Dodgy uploader uploads their latest video using fresh account.

4. Dodgy uploader gets told their video has been rejected.

5. Dodgy uploader contacts their film director/editor to tell them their latest style has been compromised.

6. Dodgy director/editor moves on to a new style, and gives video to uploader. Go to 3

7. When a human sees an example of new style, reports it. Goto 1

8. So eventually, based on the above rules, we will have every publishing/film style ever used by these people? Black & White silent movies, French New Wave, Manga, etc. etc. and then they will have to give up? Is that the theory? Looking forward to their version of Carry on up the Khyber btw.

Hospital injects $60,000 into crims' coffers to cure malware infection

Mystereed

RPO & RTO?

They could get their data back from backups without any loss. The meets the Recovery Point Objective.

They couldn't get it back in time to continue normal operation though. So was their Recovery Time Objective wrong (of course everyone can wait a week, I don't want to pay extra to get it back in 2 hours!) or was the recovery procedure unable to meet the RTO? Which if it is a supplier could result in a claim?

Dumb bug of the week: Apple's macOS reveals your encrypted drive's password in the hint box

Mystereed

Re: Why, what?

That was my first thought but then I realised that now those people no longer have their hint accessible - if they forget the password they are bu99ered?

Wouldn't it have been better to prompt for a new hint next time they used the machine as it was wiping the old one - at the point the user has just successfully entered the password?

Regulate, says Musk – OK, but who writes the New Robot Rules?

Mystereed

Re: Asimov

Don't we actually need Susan Calvin? She can then interrogate any dodgy car in question and get to the bottom of things?

May the excessive force be with you: Chap cuffed after Star Trek v Star Wars row turns bloody

Mystereed

Can I just say...

...that we have been blessed with so much brilliant stuff to watch over the years?

I haven't clicked on so many up-votes ever!

Don't fight - love the things you love :-)

Elon to dump Trump over climate bump

Mystereed

Re: @bloodbeastterror

Love the Dr Who quote.

Unfortunately, I don't think it will work :-(

Uncle Sam backs down on slurping passwords from US visa hopefuls

Mystereed

You know why they don't want the passwords any more?

It's obvious - they don't actually need them, they can get what they want from just the usernames, everything is backdoored :-(

IP Freely? Mr IP Freely? VoIP-for-suits firm battens down hatches after PBX data breach

Mystereed

Re: Brings back memories

Certainly does - changing other people's name card when on courses was always childish but a hoot anyway. Best one I saw given to someone was Isaac Hunt ;-)

324 typo-squat domains found impersonating Natwest, HSBC and co

Mystereed

Enquiring minds have to know...

..if the "unlatched browser" entry is a deliberate typo on a story about typos?

UK outsourcing market hits record levels

Mystereed

So, does it mean that..

...there is more outsourcing going on or that it is becoming more expensive?

Once all the permanent capability has gone, the suppliers can start upping their rates?

Have never been a fan of showing how big a change is by the cost though.

Microsoft ups Surface slab prices for Brits. Darn weak pound, eh?

Mystereed

Are they actually repatriating it at the moment?

I thought all the big companies were holding the cash offshore until the next rates 'amnesty' when they can bring it home without paying as much tax?

Want to come to the US? Be prepared to hand over your passwords if you're on Trump's hit list

Mystereed

2FA may not protect you?

Don't forget that they will want to know your telephone number and will probably be able to read the messages sent to it even if you left it at home and so can access any 2FA code to get access to the sites that they want?

Same with emails.

The securefobs will need a bit more work - like an arrangement with the manufacturers to have a method of reproducing the required code by detailing the serial number of the keyfob? If you leave that at home then you might be slightly better off.

When we move to iris scans, we will probably have to send them an eyeball!

HPE SAN causes four-day outage at Australian Tax Office

Mystereed

yes - didn't SSP have an HP SAN go pop too?

http://www.computerweekly.com/news/450303913/Insurance-brokers-count-cost-of-lost-business-as-SSP-SaaS-platform-outage-enters-second-week

That one was originally said to have been caused by a power problem, but it went on for ages.

Is the HP kit or Support an issue or is it because there are so many of them about that there is more chance of a high profile story cropping up? Bit like when a 'self-driving' electric car has a problem it seems to be more often than not a Tesla?

LG's $1,300 5K monitor foiled by Wi-Fi: Screens go blank near hotspots

Mystereed

Re: Yes!

I remember in the days of CRT monitors when someone had their screen replaced because the picture used to wobble.

The new one started to do the same after a short time - they had put their electric fan back next to it again after moving it away for a while when the replacement was put in.

Doh!

Oracle exec quits over co-CEO Safra Catz's promise to assist Trump

Mystereed
Trollface

Is the Register pandering to Trump too?

That picture at the top seems to have larger hands than average?

UK warships to have less firepower than 19th century equivalents as missiles withdrawn

Mystereed

Not a serious suggestion...

Why not weld a helicopter on top of the gun turret - you can then point it in the right direction and fire a harpoon missile? Two stones with one bird?

What's that, Adobe? A Photoshop for faking voices?

Mystereed

Re: So twenty minutes, eh?

Yes - was my first thought: why 20 minutes? Is there an equivalent set of words that will deliver all the building blocks? Bit like The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy log uses all the letters in an alphabet for typing practice. If yes, how easy to social engineer a few phrases to get that minimum number out?

May blocked plans to bring in more Indian IT workers – Vince Cable

Mystereed

Public and private positions?

The TCS people who work here were told by their bosses that Brexit would be an opportunity for them as they think they will continue to have access to the UK but that some of their near-shore competitors in Poland etc would find it harder.

When Pornhub meets the Internet of Fridges

Mystereed
Coat

The IOT version of Clippy?

"You seem to be looking for a cream pie..."

NASA's OSIRIS-REx is off to nick some rocks from asteroid Bennu

Mystereed

Bennu or Benny?

I read it as Benny the first time and immediately had a vision of a large rock zooming around being chased by first a spaceprobe, then a buxom nurse then a milkman etc, all to an annoyingly repetitive soundtrack :-)

Of course anyone who doesn't know/remember the Benny Hill end episode sketches will be wondering wtf is he on?

Prof Hawking to mail postage-stamp space craft to Alpha Centauri using frickin' lasers

Mystereed

Re: Lasers

That was my first thought too - more of the energy available on the target rather than heating up the atmosphere and easier to target?

Then I thought, who fancies having a deathray like that up in space?

My other unrelated thought started out as - "When do they jettison their sails?", because when they get nearer the target, the solar wind from that star will otherwise slow them down & push them away?

It then moved on to "Sounds a bit like we are talking about throwing a message in a bottle over the side of a ship and expecting the bottle to end up on a particular beach the other side of the world".

Is that even going to be possible to predict all the eddies and flows of energy that will act on such a small payload over that distance to the target star system?

If "the ship" (our world) is in the wrong place when we chuck the bottle over the side (push the postage stamp craft with a laser), there may be no way to get it to land in the right "current" that will take it to the target destination anyway?

Greybeard monobrow baldies rejoice! Boffins comb out hairy genes

Mystereed

I think hairs are like sycamore seeds, they fall out, float down and take root on ears, shoulders, back etc.

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