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You are here: February 2014

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Four Rules to Help Kids Be Safer Online | Michele Borba

Four Rules to Help Kids Be Safer Online | Michele Borba.

We’re going to cover cyberbullying in our next podcast and this is a great articvle to bring up with your children. Let me know your thoughts.

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Important Message from NFB’s Newsline service

The opinions here are my own. They do not represent NFB Newsline in any way, I just want to pass information along.

Here’s an E-mail I just received from the NFB Newsline web site portal which U.S. subscribers can use to get newspapers and other content over the phone.


An important message from the Director of NFB-NEWSLINE

You are receiving this communication because you are subscribed to the NFB-NEWSLINE audio information source.


This is Scott White, Director of the NFB-NEWSLINE service. Recently it has come to my attention that some of our subscribers have been engaging in activities that violate our usage policy.

Specifically, some NFB-NEWSLINE subscribers are recording articles from the NFB-NEWSLINE service on telephone chat boards via three-way calling which is making NFB-NEWSLINE content available to non-subscribers. The rebroadcasts of NFB-NEWSLINE content in any manner is strictly prohibited and is in violation of our usage policy. Any subscriber disseminating content from NFB-NEWSLINE to any person or persons must immediately stop this activity or run the risk of having their NFB-NEWSLINE account restricted or terminated.

Please note that this restriction does not apply when you are conducting a brief live demonstration via a three way call with a potential subscriber in order to show them how they too can enjoy and benefit from NFB-NEWSLINE service.

I have also observed some NFB-NEWSLINE subscribers sharing their private identification and security codes with either friends or other family members. The codes that you are issued when your application is approved for NFB-NEWSLINE service are for your individual use only and should not be shared with another person for any reason. Even if you feel the other person will be eligible for the service, instead you should tell them to contact us at 866-504-7300 for more information on how to sign up for their own personal account. The sharing of NFB-NEWSLINE subscriber codes is in violation of the usage policy and any subscriber found to be engaging in this activity runs the risk of having their NFB-NEWSLINE account restricted or terminated.

For any questions regarding these two conditions of the usage policy, please contact Scott White by calling 866-504-7300 or sending e-mail to .

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Scott White, NFB-NEWSLINE Director

It is absolutely sad that we need to receive such an E-mail. I’ve personally not shared my code, in fact, I haden’t used it in so long I had to have it given to me again. I know a lot of articles are being sent through voice mail systems, and it is a good reminder that people shouldn’t do this. While articles are on the same web sites as NFB Newsline pulls it, NFB Newsline is a specialized service for the blind to get information quickly and easily. My personal opinion is that this E-mail is something to keep in mind, and you should read it. I’m hoping that whoever is doing this will realize they’ll lose a great service. This has been going on for some time now, and I suppose that this was eventually going to happen. I’ve personally not told NFB Newsline anything, because I would want proof, and with several hundred people on one voice mail system or another, it is hard to pinpoint who is doing what. I wonder if they have a similar message over the phone? They should. Make a great day.

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Study: IRS exposing Social Security numbers online | PCWorld

This is absolutely not cool. Hackers will find about this, and they will have fun with it. Going to pass this on to Steve for sure. Tony does a great job covering this in this article.

Study: IRS exposing Social Security numbers online | PCWorld.

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Security Now covers quite a lot

On this weeks security now program, they cover everything from news items dealing with SSL with apple, instant messaging, and more. For a limited time download the program from Sendspace or Go to GRC’s Security Now page where you can get transcripts when available, show notes, and high and low bandwidth files. 2 hours 2 minutes. I’m interested on what they will say in regards to the SSL screw up that was talked about all over twitter over this past weekend.

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Everything you need to know about donating your voice | TED Blog

Everything you need to know about donating your voice | TED Blog.

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The Future of Mobile Malware | Symantec Connect Community

The Future of Mobile Malware | Symantec Connect Community.

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Neiman Marcus Breach Not as Bad as First Thought | SecurityWeek.Com

Neiman Marcus Breach Not as Bad as First Thought | SecurityWeek.Com.

This is great news, but still bad news just the same. Glad to see this news.

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Colombia’s President Says Thousands of His Emails Accessed by Hackers

Here we go, yet again. Colombia’s President Says Thousands of His Emails Accessed by Hackers is the name of this article, and I just have to wonder which provider was being used, and why would he have so much E-mail sitting on the server waiting to be taken? I pop all of my E-mail, and the client deletes it once I successfully retrieve it, so there is nothing on the server to have except what I haven’t gotten. I believe this is how E-mail should be run, but thats just me. Even if I was using Gmail or another provider, I wouldn’t keep thousands of mail up on the server for people to have.

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iOS Update Quashes Dangerous SSL Bug

The buzz on twitter for the past day talks about a big security issue with IOS and the SSL portion of how it works. SSL is the secure layer of the Internet that allows credit cards and other information to pass securely to its destination. Brian wrote up this post, and you can read it by clicking this link. The article title is the title of this post. Apple should be commended for patching this serious bug quickly. As I’ve said, we can only be as secure as we can possibly be. Nothing is perfect unless you call a computer perfect.

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More Adobe and Microsoft 0 day news

Today, Adobe, Microsoft Push Fixes For 0-Day Threats is coming out. It is an interesting read. For the 2nd time this month, we learn that Adobe and Microsoft are pushing out fixes for 0 day attacks. A 0 day attack means that there is no fix available even though all systems may be patched completely. It is a new thing that can crash if not destroy a system depending on what the author of the program wants done. It could be a bad thing, but we don’t know what really is going on. You should apply any fixes if available, and stay as safe as we can in this ever changing world.

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Hitting the Data Jackpot

Hitting the Data Jackpot is an article from Trend Micro. It touches a bit on my article about how Hotels and Hospitals may be victims of massive data breaches. In this article, they link to a paper they wrote which may have information on how to have businesses protect data. Sadly, it looks like we’re out of this one.

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Time to Harden Your Hardware?

This blog post entitled Time to Harden Your Hardware? by Brian Krebs is quite interesting. Security now, produced by Twit covers this, but I don’t know how much. It is looking like it is going to get really bad. For a limited time go and get the file off of Sendspace. I think I’ll leave it up for 30 days. This looks like it is going to be a great 1 hour 56 minutes of my time, but it scares me. Between data breaches and the continuing of the hacking, how bad will it get before we go off the net?

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Whats going to happen? My thoughts on the security breaches

These are only my thoughts. These are not the thoughts of a security expert who may know more about this stuff than I. Please take it as such.

We’ve had a pretty hard time understanding the massive compromise at Target. The massive amount of coverage that we’ve seen since has lead us to what was going on. Criminals will want to go where the money is, and the money lies in people’s credit cards. It no longer lies in the hacking of web sites, although that will continue. That doesn’t seem to change. What also won’t change is the defacement of software from companies like Adobe, Microsoft, and others. What will change is these data breaches.

Trend Micro in their year end report which you can find on the Internet, hinted at one major breach a month. December and January found Target which was the biggest.

Krebs On Security broke the story of the target breach with the post entitled Sources: Target Investigating Data Breach which was posted on December 15, 2013. The next itemHackers Steal Card Data from Neiman Marcus which was big to start January. Finally, Sources: Card Breach at Michaels Stores which also came out toward the end of January and in to February. This is a big deal, as these are big retail chains. The latest post dealing with target should be no surprise, and it came out on February 12, 2014. Email Attack on Vendor Set Up Breach at Target which was posted at 9 am on Feb 12, goes in to detail on how the hackers were able to phish an employee, maybe 2, in to installing a piece of software.

Phishing is nothing new. It has been going on ever since the telephone became an easy item to get as far as I’m aware. It was not known as phishing until the Internet was born, but scams by telephone are what started the whole thing. They now do this type of thing by E-mail and now a days Smishing or SMS phishing may be used. Voice phishing is another tactic, and more common. What they do is social engineer a caller, SMS recipient, or E-mail a recipient The bate? Try to get personal information and then use it to buy things, steal identity, and other things.

Getting your personal information may mean a lot of different things. They may or may not do anything with the information. They may do it for the fun of it. They may sell your information underground for hundreds of dollars. Targets stolen credit card data was sold in pieces, and according to one article between $60 and $100 a piece. This is fast moving money changing hands, and sadly, prices may be higher, and if they grab your social security number, it may be higher still. We have to do the best we can.

Target got social engineered in the E-mail department. The latest by Brian goes in to great detail. Sadly, the consumers are at a loss, because we can’t do anything about this. I’ve talked on my podcasts numerous times on how I got hacked. It is not fun. It is a hassle. I won’t go in to detail here, I can give you podcasts where credit card discussion is talked about, and you can listen to those. This is going to be a big deal now, since everything is done on the Internet.

Here is what is going to happen. The big companies in which you don’t suspect being bitten will be next. Companies in the hotel industry, banking industry, markets, gas stations, and others. The criminals will go after the big chains like Ralphs, Dollar Tree stores, and other big stores like Walmart. That won’t be my big concern. My biggest concern is the hospitals, doctor offices, and other types of businesses that deal with patient data. All of that data will move to the cloud, or what we call, on the Internet. This can be a big problem, because people don’t know how secure systems are. One article which mentioned a possible breach at such a facility was talking about how 405,000 different records were taken from an inside job. I can’t seem to find the article off hand, but that was the first. More types of this activity will occur, and the criminals know it.

As blind people, which seem to be my target audience, it is very important that you pay attention to your statements and charges. Here is what I personally recommend since I’ve been there twice. I’m not going to tell you what you should do, but I seem to do these things. Its not 100 percent guaranteed, as something may happen in between checks, but you may catch it quickly if it does.

  • If you charge a lot, make sure you look at your online account, or call in on a regular basis to determine if anything doesn’t match, or if you have a lot pending, verify that everything is yours. The 2nd time I got hacked, it wasn’t necessarily a hack. It was a small charge at a merchant that I never did business with. The Fraud Protection service would’ve never caught that.
  • Don’t wait for your statement to come in the mail. If you have a suspicious charge, I recommend you don’t wait till your statement comes. Sure, you could try and call the merchant like I did, but while you’re doing that, a criminal may put more charges on the card which may or may not set off alarms at the Fraud Protection Service from your issuing institution.
  • Don’t wait days to report something is wrong. My biggest mistake, although it didn’t cost me, was waiting days after getting hacked. After giving the company the information they requested, they promptly changed my password, and changed my contact information. I didn’t know this, and thought I had entered the wrong password. I waited for a charge to post before calling and dealing with it, and that could have cost me.
  • Read your statement in case something came through in between the times you check online. I doublecheck my statement, to make sure I know where things are. Some things may post within one day of pending. That could be the time someone read your card, shopped somewhere, and it posted just before statement generation. Mcdonalds usually posts within one day, and that is an example.
  • Try if possible to remember credit card numbers. When you first get your credit card number read to you, try to memorize it. This way, nobody can take it down when reading it to you later.

I can’t seem to think of anything else, but you can come up with a plan that suits you. Several blind customers who shopped at Target may have been compromised during the Target breach intrusion. Those people may have had charges show up on their credit card statements as new charges before their statement closed. Luckily, the banks and other institutions were aware of the potential breaches, and monitored cards right away, but your hack may be a one time thing, and nothing massive occurred. Don’t rely on the credit card company or bank to help.

What really bothers me about the Target breach is the fact that names, numbers, and possibly debit card information was taken. Debit card customers may want to keep a closer eye on their transactions since money leaves the account within a day or two, even if the charge takes a week. Being disabled means we have less money to play with than the normal sighted person, but it doesn’t mean we are not secure. I was on top of my charges, are you?

Comment on this post with any tips you might have. Lets open this up for dialogue. The comment boards await you.

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Technology podcast 186 for February 12, 2014

Hi everyone. Podcast 186 of the technology blog and podcast is on our RSS feed for your enjoyment. This 1 hour 45 minute podcast is packed. Here are the show notes that accompany the podcast.

Welcome to podcast 186 of the technology blog and podcast. This podcast has a Wakerupper update I found after publishing podcast 185. Philmore Productions is along with a 25 minute interview and a 10 minute update from his radio program. Contact Philmore Productions at 773-572-3000 or 866-443-8862. Janet Quam and I are along with a significant update daling with the Target breach, and as this podcast is being released, new information is coming out. I end with a track by Magnatune, we’re not evil. My contact information is also included. Janet can be called at 855-283-6561 or 832-999-8697. We hope you enjoy this 1 hour 45 minute podcast. File size is 96.5mb. Enjoy the program, and we’ll see you next time!

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Email Attack on Vendor Set Up Breach at Target

Well, I knew this would be big, and this article entitled Email Attack on Vendor Set Up Breach at Target gives us a bunch of new information.

This just goes to prove that phishing is still a key part of securing ones information. This well written article from Krebs talks about how this could have happened, and like I’ve been saying, there is nothing we can do. I’m surely still confused about something. It keeps saying that Target’s cash registers were hacked which lead to the breach. Is a cash register not something you take cash out of? I am going to enquire about this, and I hope I can get some understanding about this. This does not make sense to me. What do you think it could mean? Feel free to comment.

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Security Updates for Shockwave, Windows

OK, so Security Updates for Shockwave, Windows is the latest news coming off of the blog of Brian. This is some big news and he links to odds and ends within this post. Should have a read.

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Kaspersky Unveils ‘The Mask’ – Most Advanced Cyber Espionage Operation Seen To Date

Wow. I figured this would be big, but this article from Security Week goes in to some big deal coverage of this. Kaspersky Unveils ‘The Mask’ – Most Advanced Cyber Espionage Operation Seen To Date is the name of this article, and I’ve used it as the article title for this post. Anyone who has followed the other big threats knows it could possibly get worse, and it was a matter of time. Flame was huge. Wonder what Mikko says about this? If something comes up, I’ll be sure to let you know.

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FTC Approves Final Order Settling Charges Against TRENDnet, Inc.

From the ftc, we learn about FTC Approves Final Order Settling Charges Against TRENDnet, Inc. which talks about what this company now must do. I believe I have covered articles about this agency and how some people were scared because people could talk to babies, or what not through the cameras because they had access to it. Maybe it was a different company, but I know the stories had to do with watching what was going on in bed, or elsewhere. Check this article out.

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Philmore Productions going bilingual

Hi folks,
We have some interesting news coming out of the phone world I’d like to share with you. The upcoming podcast 186 will have an interview with Phil of Philmore Voice Mail and he has a bit to talk about. One of the things that is of interest I’d post about now is the bilingual support he added to the voice mail system. He also has a system for transportation, and right now it is for Chicago, but it will expand in other markets if providers are interested. The bilingual support is quite an interesting accomplishment, I don’t know if this is the first time we have had bilingual support in any system, besides the English and Spanish that some phone company systems already provide. If you’re interested in Philmore Productions voice mail, call 773-572-3000 where you can leave your contact info. Phil will call you back. We hope you find this of interest.

Hola amigos, tenemos algunas novedades interesantes del mundo teléfono me gustaría compartir con ustedes. El próximo podcast 186 tendrá una entrevista con Phil de Philmore Voice Mail y tiene un poco de qué hablar. Una de las cosas que es de interés que tenía puesto en este momento es el apoyo bilingüe, agregó que el sistema de correo de voz. También tiene un sistema de transporte y ahora es para Chicago, pero se expandirá en otros mercados si los proveedores están interesados. El apoyo bilingüe es un logro interesante, no sé si es la primera vez que hemos tenido apoyo bilingüe en cualquier sistema, además del inglés y español que ya proporcionan algunos sistemas de la compañía de teléfono. Si usted está interesado en correo de voz Philmore Productions, Llame 773-572-3000 donde puedes dejar tus datos de contacto. Phil te volveré a llamar. Esperamos que encuentres de interés.

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The Technology blog and podcast: podcast 185: A review of Wakerupper and Snoozester

On this edition of the podcast which is fround on our RSS feed Jared Rimer takes you through the two services Wakerupper, and Snoozester. Here are the show notes for the podcast. As a side note, sign up for Snoozester via the link, and get 10 free credits, and decide to pay, there is a tell a friend surprise if you like it and pass it along to your friends. Find out all the details in the podcast, and now the show notes.

Welcome to the technology blog and podcast. On this podcast, we have two items for you. We talk about two different services. The first is Wakerupper and the second is Snoozester which seems to have more options. Find out which service wins, even though I can’t do a complete demo using access technology. I sample two calls from one, 1 from another, and you decide if you agree with the decision you’ll hear about within this 1 hour 57 minute podcast. Music at the end is provided by Magnatune, we’re not evil. The file size is 107mb. Enjoy!

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