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Archive for August, 2013

Google Glass for the Public Sector

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

For those of you who are not very tech savvy or have been living under a rock, take a look at Google Glass.

Pretty awesome eh? Now imagine Police Officers, Firefighters, EMS and other First Responders being able to capitalize on this nifty invention. Well it may be more than just a thought and may become an actual reality. Software developers Mutualink are currently in the works on creating and testing an app that will do just this.

The app would allow public safety officers and officials to communicate in real-time via streaming video from the scene, as well as to receive and view key documents, including things like building schematics, medical records of victims, live feeds of security cameras in the area and more. It’s the ultimate on-demand intel platform for agents working in the field, and a way to stay in contact with HQ and other organizations even when radio systems won’t talk to each other.

The reason that this intrigues me so much is because I currently work for a company that develops software for the Public Sector and so instantly the gears in my brain started spinning and I can already see just how great of a tool this could be. Right now we have software that is used in squad cars to receive information about calls and other information related to the incident in question. Once you are out of the car though all you have is a simple radio connection to dispatch to get updates.

I can see how this app would be a great addition for when dispatch pushes out a BOLO that has a mugshot of the perp in question that would flash up. The officer would know exactly who to keep an eye out for instead of just a vague description of the person. When it comes to Firefighters it would be great for them to be able to pull up the floor plans of the building they are entering, information on any hazardous materials that may be present and/or how many tenants occupy the building. For EMS they could quickly pull up any medical history on the person they are transporting.

It’s not Robocop, but it’s a step closer.

Sarlacc Pit Not Included

Monday, August 19th, 2013

This apartment posted on Craigslist sounds like the perfect living situation, that is if you’re a non-heroin user looking to share a home that isn’t haunted, hasn’t been the site of very many animal sacrifices and doesn’t contain a Sarlacc Pit.

Original Post

Hi there! Are you looking for a room to rent in a nice, quiet home in a quiet area of town? Perhaps you are a college student looking for some off campus housing. Or (preferably), you’re an exchange student who speaks about 15 words of English and spends 14 hours a day at the library. Well if so, then do I have the rental for you!

I currently live in a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom standalone single family home by myself. The house is very nice, and comes ghost and demon free. There have been 0 murders and little to no animal sacrifices in the backyard. Rent is $500 a month and that includes all utilities. The house also has a washer and dryer, but does not include a Sarlacc pit (sorry!).

I work a lot and am not home that often. When I am home, I’m a relatively quiet person. I promise not to take pictures of you while you sleep and sell them on the internet (unless you’re Mila Kunis, in which case I will be installing 24/7 spy cams in your room).

Things I like:
Anime
Video Games
The occasional beer
Not doing heroin

Things you should like:
A clean house
Not doing heroin

Your room has a total of three (3) windows, all of which let in sunlight. If you are a vampire I do not suggest applying for this room unless you are a daywalker. I also would prefer if you were not a werewolf as I think that the damages to the house would eat into the security deposit rather quickly.

Pictures of your room are attached. See that shit? You’ve got a CLOSET, some bangin’ ass windows and your very own DOOR! That thing’s even got a lock with a key. How modern!

Please apply if you sound interested, and if you don’t do heroin.

Thank you!

P.S. – No heroin

….this message sent while not using heroin.

The reason for this hilariously unusual post?

I had a friend of mine who was staying with me who I was subletting a room to. I knew he was a recovering heroin addict and had been clean for a while. One day I woke up and found my XBox 360 gone along with my roommate. I instantly knew what had happened so I bought a bunch of security system stuff from Home Depot, and I changed my locks, thinking it would help the situation. I posted the ad on Craigslist right after that happened.

Two days later I came home from work to find my $1,500 TV missing. I moved all of my stuff out of my home and into my parents’ house, afraid that all of my stuff would get taken little by little. My roommate contacted me a few days later, apologetic and letting me know he wanted to pay me back for it. Two days later he went to rehab and I haven’t heard from him since.

Daniel says that after putting up the Craigslist ad he heard from the former roommate that “his other junkie friends knew about his location” and that he’s since decided to move to a new home.

Oh Facebook! You silly Goose you!

Monday, August 19th, 2013

From CNN.com

A Palestinian researcher posted a message on Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s page last week after he says the site’s security team didn’t take his warnings about a security flaw seriously.

“First, sorry for breaking your privacy and post(ing) to your wall,” wrote Khalil Shreateh. “I (have) no other choice to make after all the reports I sent to (the) Facebook team.”

Shreateh, who describes himself as an unemployed security researcher with a degree in information systems, said he found a hole in Facebook’s systems that let him post to any user’s page, including users not on his Friends list.

Such an exploit would be a virtual gold mine for spammers, scam artists and others seeking to take advantage of the site’s roughly 1 billion users worldwide.

Shreateh said he contacted Facebook security about the vulnerability before using it to post to Mark Zuckerberg’s page.

On his blog, Shreateh posted a series of e-mails he said were exchanged between him and Facebook security. After the first one, a Facebook employee responded that the link he attached was bad.

Shreateh had included a post — an Enrique Iglesias video — he says he posted on the page of a woman who went to college with Zuckerberg. He speculated that Facebook’s security team couldn’t see it because they weren’t on her Friends list.

Facebook responded to his second message to say the issue he was reporting was not a bug.

His response: “ok that mean(s) I have no choice other than report this to mark himself on facebook.”

Needless to say, that got their attention.

Facebook says the flaw was fixed on Thursday. But over the weekend the episode began making headlines on tech blogs.

On the Hacker News website, Facebook security team member Matt Jones wrote that the language barrier with Shreateh, who is not a native English speaker, and the volume of reports the site receives were partly to blame for the site’s slow response.

“Unfortunately, all he submitted was a link to the post he’d already made (on a real account whose consent he did not have) … saying that ‘the bug allow facebook users to share links to other facebook users,’ ” Jones wrote.

“For background, as a few other commenters have pointed out, we get hundreds of reports every day. Many of our best reports come from people whose English isn’t great — though this can be challenging, it’s something we work with just fine and we have paid out over $1 million to hundreds of reporters.”

Because he violated Facebook’s terms of service by hacking the pages of other users, Shreateh is not eligible to receive a reward under the site’s White Hat program designed to find and fix bugs.

Shreateh, who says he has been looking for work for two years, lives in the Palestinian city of Yatta, in a region where the unemployment rate is officially 22% and is higher among men in their 20s, like Shreateh.

“I could sell (information about the flaw) on the black (hat) hackers’ websites and I could make more money than Facebook could pay me,” he said in an interview with CNN. “But for me — I am a good guy. I don’t deal with the black (hat) stuff.”

In hacker circles, “white hat” is a term for people who report exploits they find so they can be fixed, while “black hat” often refers to people who hack to take advantage of those exploits.

He said he’s proud that, as a Palestinian using a five-year-old laptop with broken keys and a broken battery, he had the skills to find a problem with one of the world’s biggest websites. But he acknowledged hoping his tip would lead to a reward from Facebook.

“I never asked them, ‘I want $4,000 or $5,000’,” he said. “I didn’t deal with them like that … . (But) I really needed that money.”

Jones acknowledged that the security team should have asked Shreateh for more information.

“I have to admit that I have some sympathy with Facebook on this issue,” security analyst Graham Cluley wrote on his blog. “Although he was frustrated by the response from Facebook’s security team, Shreateh did the wrong thing by using the flaw to post a message on Mark Zuckerberg’s wall.”

He would have been better served returning to Facebook’s security team with more evidence and further explaining it or, if that didn’t work, taking the information to a technology journalist to report, Cluley said.

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