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posted by NCommander on Wednesday June 03 2020, @09:37PM   Printer-friendly
from the protect-yourself dept.

[Speaking as the de-facto leader of SoylentNews, I know this community is very sensitive to self-promotional "Slashvertising" and similar. Since our inception, we've prided ourselves on listening to our community and taking those views into account. I've walked a bit of a fine line with that with my original content articles both recently and in the past. I do not want to be a rule unto myself so if this post ends up crossing that line, mention it in the comments and we'll take those lessons to heart. Also, we haven't had a community roundtable here at SN in quite a long time, so I'm going to schedule one go to live on Monday.]

[NB: Yes, "original content" articles are welcome here. If anyone is considering it, please try to keep them tech-related and provide supporting links. Also provide contact info (email address) so any issues or questions can be discussed as needed. --martyb]

The simple fact is that in the last few weeks, the world, especially in the United States has become a very different place. Here in New York City, there's been constant protests and escalation between the police and protesters. In an era where drones are being used to track and monitor protesters, digital security is more important more than ever. I want to do my bit on trying to help people keep themselves safe and secure in these times.

Normally, I try not to push self-promotion here, and I've made sure that my recent original content articles are not pushing that line. I mentioned in my last article that I host a weekly hacking show called HACK-ALT-NCOMMANDER, as part of DEFCON 201, the local DEF CON group for the New Jersey area. Usually, I cover some bit of retro-tech, random reverse engineering, and other random and strange things. Not today.

This time, I've decided to cover these topics:

  • email security
  • a quick primer on GnuPG and S/MIME
  • understanding Tor
  • basic OPSEC (using Windows as a base)

I'll also be fielding questions in real-time. If you're interested, please tune in at 8PM Eastern Daylight Time (24:00 UTC) to the DEFCON 201 video streams (see links below). I may also cover aspects of securing systems for IT administrators depending on how chat directs me.

Twitch:https://www.twitch.tv/defcon201live
YouTube:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYDQaOHbK5trRU2CDgb0qSg
dLive:https://dlive.tv/defcon201
Invidious [TOR]:http://axqzx4s6s54s32yentfqojs3x5i7faxza6xo3ehd4bzzsg2ii4fv2iid.onion/channel/UCYDQaOHbK5trRU2CDgb0qSg
Periscope:https://www.twitter.com/defcon201nj

73 de NCommander, hoping that you're all safe

 
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DannyB on Wednesday June 03 2020, @09:51PM (9 children)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday June 03 2020, @09:51PM (#1002950) Journal

    basic OPSEC (using Windows as a base)

    Why anyone running Windows would care about OPSEC is definitely a mystery worth learning about.

    --
    What can be done to stop bloggers from using the wrong color schemes?
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by NCommander on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:38PM (4 children)

      by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:38PM (#1002971) Homepage Journal

      Because most people use Windows, and right now, if I tell someone "Use Tails, install 30+ privacy stuff, etc.", they're not going to bother. If I can get some using protonmail, and switch away from Chrome, it's steps in the right drection.

      --
      Still always moving
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @01:08AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @01:08AM (#1003005)

        I guess you hang out in different circles than I do. No one uses Windoze there. If I advise someone "Use Tails, install 30+ privacy stuff, etc.", they may not bother, but I couldn't care less.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @01:25AM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @01:25AM (#1003013)

        Exactly. Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

        • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:22PM (1 child)

          by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:22PM (#1003198) Journal

          This message brought to you by the NSA.

          --
          What can be done to stop bloggers from using the wrong color schemes?
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @08:33PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @08:33PM (#1003351)

            If that's your attitude, then any steps to secure your systems are futile and shouldn't be taken. After all, it just takes one crack and and your system is fucked. And you'd better believe the bad guys, however you define them, know plenty of cracks.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:09PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:09PM (#1002976)

      Were you serious or poking fun?

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:24PM (2 children)

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:24PM (#1003200) Journal

        If you poke fun, does fun not bleed?

        --
        What can be done to stop bloggers from using the wrong color schemes?
        • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:01PM (1 child)

          by Freeman (732) on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:01PM (#1003214) Journal

          No, it just deflates.

          --
          Forced Microsoft Account for Windows Login → Switch to Linux.
          • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:31PM

            by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:31PM (#1003236) Journal

            Sort of like the autopilot.

            --
            What can be done to stop bloggers from using the wrong color schemes?
  • (Score: 0, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:41PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:41PM (#1002973)

    In Tijuana, the live shows have donkeys.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by richtopia on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:51PM (4 children)

    by richtopia (3160) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:51PM (#1002974) Homepage Journal

    I appreciate your dilemma here. And I'm unsure what to recommend. I think plugging your blog/stream is a promotion of independent journalism, and I appreciate NCommander's post here. However, you could imagine more of a grey story where you promote your blog/stream which is a revenue source. My first reaction to a monetized blog is also acceptable, given the topic is relevant to the audience. Lastly, what if you were promoting a product, like NCommander's pre-configured virtual machines for old operating systems. Assuming that the sales are legit, I still would consider it a grey area, assuming the product is relevant to the SN audience.

    I'm not really proposing answers here, but rather I'm attempting to facilitate some dialogue. Here are some rules of thumb I would provide:
    1. Say no to product placement. Even if it is tech-related, I would keep the precedent as no products. Maybe an exception for non-profit stuff
    2. Permit links to blogs/vlogs. I really like the summary from the SN front page, but for archival purposes it is a good idea to maintain your own blog or post to a site like YouTube
    3. Use seinority/activity as a judgement call. This depends on the editors, but if you are debating if a post is valid, I would say yes to active community members

    Any other opinions?

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by NCommander on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:58PM (2 children)

      by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Wednesday June 03 2020, @10:58PM (#1002975) Homepage Journal

      We've (DEFCON 201) raised money for COVID-19 research, but our fundraiser just ended. Speaking from my seat in SoylentNews PBC's board of directors, we bring in subscribers to keep the lights on as best we can but we don't have "promoted content" in the sense that we accept money to run articles. The concept was discussed here a few times and the community overwhelmingly said no.

      We (now speaking from DC201) are just a small hacker group; no one is profiting from this aside from whatever ads are being placed by Twitch/YouTube/etc but we don't see a cent of that.

      --
      Still always moving
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:13PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:13PM (#1002977)

        Can you release a recording of the talk? I can spare a few mins here and there for commentary here but won't be able to watch the full live stream.

        As for promotional stuff, maybe a separate section on SN with a sidebar box "Promotional Journals" or something with a "last updated" date instead of a list of items? Or just like the journal section but below? I think it would be interesting to have a community bazaar.

        • (Score: 4, Informative) by NCommander on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:16PM

          by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <mcasadevall@soylentnews.org> on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:16PM (#1002979) Homepage Journal

          The talk automatically gets exported as a VoD on Twitch and uploaded to the DEFCON 201 YouTube page. It won't be edited. My previous shows usually go for several hours.

          --
          Still always moving
    • (Score: 2) by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us on Friday June 05 2020, @07:00PM

      by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us (6553) on Friday June 05 2020, @07:00PM (#1003895) Journal

      Nicely said, especially #3. One can take into account whether it is a long term contributor to discussion versus someone who just registered an account to try and get quick promotion for their ideas and then leave.

      --
      Keep everyone ignorant of the magical world! KEEP AMERICA OBLIVIATE!
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:41PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:41PM (#1002982)

    some dude once analysed that communication needs (at least) two end points: a sender and a receiver.
    most of the receivers (or was it senders, nevermind?) just won't bother with "security" and just accept what comes out of the box.
    i have tried stuff (tor, pgp, dht, etc.) but, well, it's kindda like "my internets not work - did you connect the phone line to the modem?" or "my printer isn't printing - did you add paper to paper tray?" situation.
    it's cool and all but i got old and don't have much hope anymore(*). i think the last straw that broke the camels back was when i saw news that people were queueing and camping infront of smart phone outlet for version 87 for over 12 hours ... (only to be left "unupgradable" a few years later.
    anyways, good luck and thanks for new info.
    (*) also realizing that lots of people don't like computers and are just "forced" to use it to get work done.

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:42PM (4 children)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Wednesday June 03 2020, @11:42PM (#1002984)

    hosted on Periscope, Youtube, Twitch... all cloud services run by companies hell-bent on invading your privacy and selling your personal information.

    The irony is high with this one.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:47AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:47AM (#1003041)

    Just looked at the livestream and will download it later for sure. Nice to see a face to put with a username.
    Dear Canonical, they have lost their way. You must check out the May News on LinuxMint.com - sigh, 20.04 and Snap. Its the Amazon thing all over again. At this point for me we are down to two distros: Mint and Manjaro. Some others may still be viable, but you can count them on one hand.

    • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:09PM

      by Freeman (732) on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:09PM (#1003220) Journal

      Last I tried MX Linux, it was very usable. Most of my Linux tinkering has involved reviving old laptops and MX Linux fit the bill for the last one.

      --
      Forced Microsoft Account for Windows Login → Switch to Linux.
  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @06:25AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @06:25AM (#1003090)

    basic OPSEC (using Windows as a base)

    Get back to us when there's free and open source Windows with reproducible builds.

    Otherwise, it's like pouring perfume on a pig.

    You cannot defend against the unknowns in proprietary code.

    Most people use Windows is not a good excuse or reason.

    • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:18PM

      by Freeman (732) on Thursday June 04 2020, @03:18PM (#1003226) Journal

      https://reactos.org/ [reactos.org] It's not Windows, but it's an open source implementation, that's being designed to be a drop in replacement.

      --
      Forced Microsoft Account for Windows Login → Switch to Linux.
  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:35PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04 2020, @02:35PM (#1003208)

    The simple fact is that in the last few weeks, the world, especially in the United States has become a very different place.

    The simple fact is that this is not true. In the last few weeks, protests and violence have happened in several large cities. In a vast majority of the United States, nothing in particular has happened. I know it's not PC to say that, but it's the truth. As for the "world", that again really hasn't changed in the last few weeks.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 08 2020, @03:15PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 08 2020, @03:15PM (#1004847)

      I know it's not PC to say that, but it's the truth.

      I keep hearing people talk about the world being a "very different place" over the course of the last few weeks. I'm starting to wonder if they're simply repeating it over and over in hopes that if they do so enough times, it will become true by making so many people believe it (whether or not most of those people who believe it actually hate it).

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