November 2004

Ian has a fine post over at financial cryptography: The only thing I’m unsure of is whether it should be economics or risk. But as I roll it around my mind, I keep coming back to the conclusion that in the public’s mind, the popular definition of economics is closer to the image that we…

Read More Amateurs study cryptography; professionals study economics.

Security experts take it as a truism that you can’t defend everything. So you have to make choices about what attacks to worry about, and which ones to ignore. A study released today claims that unprotected hosts are attacked once per second. (USA Today reports on the study, and avantgarde.com is utterly swamped. So I…

Read More Worms swamp security

I’d like to add one bit about Lycos’ new attack spammers screensaver. Ed Felten writes most of what needs to be said about it: This is a serious lapse of judgment by Lycos. For one thing, this kind of vigilante attack erodes the line between the good guys and the bad guys. Spammers are bad…

Read More Lycos' attack spammers@home

SteveC, whose comments are broken, says: “wikinews is demoing here. When you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail. I can’t wait for wiki… wiki… wikigovernment. Or something. We could all edit the laws. yay!” Me, I want WikiAirlineSchedules.

Read More Wikinews

Cryptome points to a fascinating article in The Guardian about how the US is training young activists to undermine corrupt regimes: Funded and organised by the US government, deploying US consultancies, pollsters, diplomats, the two big American parties and US non-government organisations, the campaign was first used in Europe in Belgrade in 2000 to beat…

Read More CIA funded overthrows?

Allan Schiffman has sorted through the papers from the DIMACS Workshop on Usable Privacy and Security Software, and has summaries and recommendations in “Bad Security = Bad UI?.” [Update: Oh, the irony of a conference on usability naming all their files things like “blaze.pdf” or “garfinkel.ppt”– how about “blaze-usable-privsec.pdf,” so I can easily archive the…

Read More Bad Security = Bad UI?

Naxos is a classical music company. They bill themselves as the world’s leading classical label. They have a fascinating business model, which is that they find great ensembles, often in eastern Europe, have them record interesting music, and then sell it cheaply. I’ll often buy 2 or 3 Naxos CDs as experimentation. When they’re 7…

Read More Music economics

America’s Secret War, by George Friedman, is reviewed in the Australian: The Americans had established and then strengthened a military presence in countries surrounding Saudi Arabia – Yemen, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait. Invasion of Iraq would complete the encirclement. “From a purely military view,” Friedman adds, “Iraq is the most strategic single country in…

Read More Containment?