Snowden and the NSA reflect a millennial climate change

mt_snowdonSnowdon (not Snowden) is the name of the tallest mountain in Wales and while by Swiss or Colorado standards it may not seem like much the weather on Snowdon is unpredictable and has taken many lives. I climbed Snowdon as a schoolboy with my class and that day on the mountain another school group was lost in a blizzard and some boys died. This is what first came to mind when I heard about National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden leaking documents and fleeing to Hong Kong. Like his namesake mountain, this Snowden is trouble for those who are overconfident or unwary.

I’ve written about this general topic many times over the years and doing a […]

The terahertz revolution and local security

lenscraftersIf you were able to get through to yesterday’s column between server crashes perhaps you noticed the very first reader comment, which wasn’t about mobile phones or marathons at all, but about my promise to in this column discuss new anti-terrorism technology.  Here, if you missed it, is his comment:

“Is yesterday going to be an excuse to ban pressure cookers? I’m fed up with the government. Money has been shoveled by the barge load onto the ‘security issue’ and we have nothing to show for it except the union thug goons that feel us up at the airport and a severe loss of personal and constitutionally guaranteed freedoms. I suggest we disband these futile efforts […]

InsecureID: No more secrets?

Update — Though I chose to keep secret the identity of the defense contractor to limit the damage it was subsequently revealed by Reuters to be Lockheed-Martin. There was one additional detail presented at the end of a story in Saturday’s New York Times.

Back in March I heard from an old friend whose job it is to protect his company’s network from attack. “Any word on just what was compromised at RSA?” he asked, referring to how the RSA Data Security division of EMC had been hacked. “I suspect it was no more than a serial number, a seed, and possibly the key generation time. The algorithm has been known for years […]

By |May 25th, 2011|2011|137 Comments

Predict Me, I'm from the Government

This is my second predictions column for 2010 with more to come. This column is about homeland security, which is something our government isn’t very good at and I predict won’t get any better at this year because of a systemic inability to do correctly even the most basic things to protect our society, our privacy, and our way of life.

President Obama this week proposed some changes in how homeland security is managed following that Christmas Eve attempt to explode an airliner as it was landing in Detroit. These changes are minimal but I doubt they’ll even be implemented because this is a system that inevitably reverts to little fiefdoms run by […]

By |January 8th, 2010|2010|124 Comments