0932: "CIA"

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0932: "CIA"

Postby jpk » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:07 am UTC

Image

Alt text: It was their main recruiting poster, hung up nearly ten feet up a wall! This means the hackers have LADDER technology! Are we headed for a future where everyone has to pay $50 for one of those locked plexiglass poster covers? More after the break ...


Five bucks says someone brings up the word "elitist" in the first three pages of discussion.
Last edited by jpk on Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:08 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 0932:"CIA"

Postby Hughes » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:08 am UTC

Stupid computer elitists.

There ya go.
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#0932: "CIA"

Postby Maxpm » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:10 am UTC

Image

Title-text: "It was their main recruiting poster, hung up nearly ten feet up a wall!" This means the hackers have LADDER technology! Are we headed for a future where everyone has to pay $50 for one of those locked plexiglass poster covers? More after the break..."

Yeah, I can definitely relate. People's reactions to the "situation" are often scarier than the situation itself. It troubles me that we live in a world so dependent on technology, yet very few people really understand it.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Maxpm » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:11 am UTC

Two minutes ahead of me. Curse you. (But I called it "Title-Text" instead of "alt text..." Does that count for anything? *Hopeful grin*)
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Turing Machine » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:19 am UTC

Computer experts - not people.

:themoreyouknow:
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Steve the Pocket » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:24 am UTC

If we're talking about a denial-of-service attack, and I assume we are, it's not even that they tore down the poster, more like they got a whole bunch of people to stand in front of it so no one can see it. So basically we're talking about the digital equivalent of a sit-in.

Maxpm wrote:Two minutes ahead of me. Curse you. (But I called it "Title-Text" instead of "alt text..." Does that count for anything? *Hopeful grin*)

Not to me. I hate both those terms. Alt-text for being inaccurate and nondescriptive, and title-text for being confusing and nondescriptive. (Anyone not versed in HTML is going to think "title text" means the actual title, at the top.) Mouseover text, rollover caption, hover text, tooltip, even popup text would work better IMO.

EDIT: Of course I had to pick today to make a stupid typo.
Last edited by Steve the Pocket on Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:38 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby syko_lozz » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:32 am UTC

hehe this comic has surprising relevance for a recent news story in Australia
http://theconversation.edu.au/evil-desc ... quite-2529
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Coffee » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:34 am UTC

Why would anyone attack the Culinary Institute of America's website?
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby poxic » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:38 am UTC

Because sauce is of the devil.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby jpk » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:43 am UTC

Steve the Pocket wrote:If we're talking about a denial-of-server attack, and I assume we are, it's not even that they tore down the poster, more like they got a whole bunch of people to stand in front of it so no one can see it. So basically we're talking about the digital equivalent of a sit-in.

Maxpm wrote:Two minutes ahead of me. Curse you. (But I called it "Title-Text" instead of "alt text..." Does that count for anything? *Hopeful grin*)

Not to me. I hate both those terms. Alt-text for being inaccurate and nondescriptive, and title-text for being confusing and nondescriptive. (Anyone not versed in HTML is going to think "title text" means the actual title, at the top.) Mouseover text, rollover caption, hover text, tooltip, even popup text would work better IMO.


Well it's a "title" attribute, so maxpm does have a point. It was an alt tag back in the early 90s when I learned html, and I haven't kept up because I haven't done web stuff in the last ten years, so it's still an alt tag to me. The terms you're using don't seem to be actual attributes in html, so I don't know what you're on about.

(oh, and by the way, it's a "denial of service" attack. As long as you're being fussy...)
Last edited by jpk on Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:49 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby americablanco » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:46 am UTC

I really need to get cable...
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby solarein » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:50 am UTC

Well...to be fair, it's more like someone tore down a poster hung outside a CIA building (assuming that the CIA website is hosted on a CIA data center somewhere, not outsourced to some third party.) Simply saying that it's a "poster hung up by the CIA" gives one the impression that it's a poster hung at some random location the CIA doesn't care about. Sure, it's still just a poster, but one would still hope that the CIA building has better security that prevents people from tearing down posters hung on its walls.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby unus vox » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:05 am UTC

And if somebody figures out what my facebook password is, I have been hacked! THE HACKERS ARE EVERYWHERE
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Technical Ben » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:07 am UTC

Love it. This is what I tend to hear with most news stories. "The economy is doomed" is usually translated to "we need to print more pretend money, but the guy in charge prefers not to devalue his hoarded millions" in my head.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Glass Fractal » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:10 am UTC

solarein wrote:Well...to be fair, it's more like someone tore down a poster hung outside a CIA building (assuming that the CIA website is hosted on a CIA data center somewhere, not outsourced to some third party.) Simply saying that it's a "poster hung up by the CIA" gives one the impression that it's a poster hung at some random location the CIA doesn't care about. Sure, it's still just a poster, but one would still hope that the CIA building has better security that prevents people from tearing down posters hung on its walls.


Sure, the CIA building probably does have good security. They need to protect it and the people inside.
If there's a need to protect the CIA website more so than, say, xkcd.com then they've done something terribly wrong. In fact they can probably protect it less than xkcd since their livelyhoods aren't based on its activity.

The point is that when people hear "the CIA website was hacked" they think of the site as a magic portal into the CIA's secure information when really it's just a platform for press releases and propaganda that could be maintained by anyone.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby TaylorP » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:12 am UTC

unus vox wrote:And if somebody figures out what my facebook password is, I have been hacked! THE HACKERS ARE EVERYWHERE


Haha, so true. People like to claim they've been attacked by a "Facebook hacker" when the situation merely involves them leaving their account open in a public place. :roll: The word "hack" sure has evolved.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby nico » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:46 am UTC

Steve the Pocket wrote:Not to me. I hate both those terms. Alt-text for being inaccurate and nondescriptive, and title-text for being confusing and nondescriptive. (Anyone not versed in HTML is going to think "title text" means the actual title, at the top.) Mouseover text, rollover caption, hover text, tooltip, even popup text would work better IMO.


Possibly agree for title-text, although I don't like your alternatives, as nowhere do the standard say that the title text should be shown as a popup/caption.

W3C reccomandations:
Values of the title attribute may be rendered by user agents in a variety of ways. For instance, visual browsers frequently display the title as a "tool tip" (a short message that appears when the pointing device pauses over an object). Audio user agents may speak the title information in a similar context.


alt-text, however, is not confusing and it is descriptive: is the text to display in alternative to an image when the image cannot be displayed. The fact that in the olden times certain browsers used to popup the alt-text on mouseover is completely irrelevant, as they were never supposed to do that in the first place.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Eternal Density » Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:58 am UTC

Turing Machine wrote:Computer experts - not people.

:themoreyouknow:
I was going to say that's how I read it!
Basically Randall missed the word 'most' from panel 2.
syko_lozz wrote:hehe this comic has surprising relevance for a recent news story in Australia
http://theconversation.edu.au/evil-desc ... quite-2529
Heh, that's kinda funny. People saying someone "hacked into the NBN" means as much/little as saying someone "hacked into the phone line"
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby nmp303 » Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:03 am UTC

jpk wrote:
Steve the Pocket wrote:If we're talking about a denial-of-server attack, and I assume we are, it's not even that they tore down the poster, more like they got a whole bunch of people to stand in front of it so no one can see it. So basically we're talking about the digital equivalent of a sit-in.

Maxpm wrote:Two minutes ahead of me. Curse you. (But I called it "Title-Text" instead of "alt text..." Does that count for anything? *Hopeful grin*)

Not to me. I hate both those terms. Alt-text for being inaccurate and nondescriptive, and title-text for being confusing and nondescriptive. (Anyone not versed in HTML is going to think "title text" means the actual title, at the top.) Mouseover text, rollover caption, hover text, tooltip, even popup text would work better IMO.


Well it's a "title" attribute, so maxpm does have a point. It was an alt tag back in the early 90s when I learned html, and I haven't kept up because I haven't done web stuff in the last ten years, so it's still an alt tag to me. The terms you're using don't seem to be actual attributes in html, so I don't know what you're on about.

(oh, and by the way, it's a "denial of service" attack. As long as you're being fussy...)

The terms he's using isn't meant to be actual attributes. He was saying that if you place your grandmother (uhm... she doesn't know HTML, does she?) in front of the computer, hover your mouse over the comic, and then ask her to choose a name to describe the text that pops up, she wouldn't name it after the HTML tags, but rather choose something describing it's function as used by Randal.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby rapturemachine » Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:11 am UTC

unus vox wrote:And if somebody figures out what my facebook password is, I have been hacked! THE HACKERS ARE EVERYWHERE

This gets under my skin. I know I shouldn't let it, but it really does.
On topic: I'm not a computer "expert", but... then it's hilarious to watch everybody panic.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby feyayeruka » Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:28 am UTC

I'm willing to bet the CIA website got a whole lot more traffic after this incedent. The whole thing was a scam to boost their google adwords account, no doubt.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Rilian » Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:58 am UTC

Coffee wrote:Why would anyone attack the Culinary Institute of America's website?

Gilmore Girls?
And I'm -2.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby JeromeWest » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:24 am UTC

Glass Fractal wrote:If there's a need to protect the CIA website more so than, say, xkcd.com then they've done something terribly wrong. In fact they can probably protect it less than xkcd since their livelyhoods aren't based on its activity.


The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby ironmagma » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:28 am UTC

nico wrote:alt-text, however, is not confusing and it is descriptive: is the text to display in alternative to an image when the image cannot be displayed. The fact that in the olden times certain browsers used to popup the alt-text on mouseover is completely irrelevant, as they were never supposed to do that in the first place.


Except that the text we're talking about is not in the alt attribute. "CIA" is the value of the alt attribute, and this is the value of the title attribute.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Jamaican Castle » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:33 am UTC

JeromeWest wrote:The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?


It's even easier to post misinformation on Wikipedia and the world has yet to end (as far as I can tell).

Also, I imagine the CIA's public website being outsourced to some tech company so they don't have to pay to security-screen all the people involved.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby JeromeWest » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:45 am UTC

Jamaican Castle wrote:
JeromeWest wrote:The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?


It's even easier to post misinformation on Wikipedia and the world has yet to end (as far as I can tell).


That's an odd comparison. It's even easier to post misinformation on this forum and my cat has yet to die (as far as I can tell)... so what?

I would hope I could trust the website of the CIA slightly more than an encyclopaedia which can be freely edited by anyone at any time. But it seems I can't.

(BTW, I don't have a cat.)
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Farabor » Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:21 am UTC

JeromeWest wrote:
Jamaican Castle wrote:
JeromeWest wrote:The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?


It's even easier to post misinformation on Wikipedia and the world has yet to end (as far as I can tell).


That's an odd comparison. It's even easier to post misinformation on this forum and my cat has yet to die (as far as I can tell)... so what?

I would hope I could trust the website of the CIA slightly more than an encyclopaedia which can be freely edited by anyone at any time. But it seems I can't.

(BTW, I don't have a cat.)


For your benefit, here's a website to check to see if the world's ended (from the most likely cause):
http://hasthelargehadroncolliderdestroyedtheworldyet.com/
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby JeromeWest » Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:01 am UTC

Farabor wrote:For your benefit, here's a website to check to see if the world's ended (from the most likely cause):
http://hasthelargehadroncolliderdestroyedtheworldyet.com/


Phew, that's a relief! Hang about, how can I tell if that site's been hacked?
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Aelfyre » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:05 pm UTC

solarein wrote:Well...to be fair, it's more like someone tore down a poster hung outside a CIA building (assuming that the CIA website is hosted on a CIA data center somewhere, not outsourced to some third party.) Simply saying that it's a "poster hung up by the CIA" gives one the impression that it's a poster hung at some random location the CIA doesn't care about. Sure, it's still just a poster, but one would still hope that the CIA building has better security that prevents people from tearing down posters hung on its walls.


of course they do.. they rely heavily on explosive thumbtack technology stolen from the Roswell aliens.
(technically I think they may have traded it for greencards)
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby jc » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:47 pm UTC

syko_lozz wrote:hehe this comic has surprising relevance for a recent news story in Australia
http://theconversation.edu.au/evil-desc ... quite-2529

So if I'm reading this story right, they're accusing this guy of an "attack" that consists of sending DNS queries to their DNS server and cleverly saving the replies.

It reminds me of stories about "attacks" whose descriptions were consistent with hundreds of pings per day. ;-)
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Glass Fractal » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:59 pm UTC

JeromeWest wrote:
Glass Fractal wrote:If there's a need to protect the CIA website more so than, say, xkcd.com then they've done something terribly wrong. In fact they can probably protect it less than xkcd since their livelyhoods aren't based on its activity.


The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?


What kind of misinformation are you worried about, exactly? A fake history of the CIA? Inaccurate career prospects? Wait, don't tell me, they could make the Kid's Page seem ridiculous!
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby CoyoteDen » Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:25 pm UTC

solarein wrote:Well...to be fair, it's more like someone tore down a poster hung outside a CIA building (assuming that the CIA website is hosted on a CIA data center somewhere, not outsourced to some third party.)

Jamaican Castle wrote:Also, I imagine the CIA's public website being outsourced to some tech company so they don't have to pay to security-screen all the people involved.


Code: Select all
Whois query for 198.81.129.125...

Results returned from whois.arin.net:

#
# The following results may also be obtained via:
# http://whois.arin.net/rest/nets;q=198.81.129.125?showDetails=true&showARIN=true
#

ANS Communications, Inc BLK198-15-ANS (NET-198-80-0-0-1) 198.80.0.0 - 198.81.255.255
Central Intelligence Agency OIT-BLK1 (NET-198-81-128-0-1) 198.81.128.0 - 198.81.191.255
Various Registries (Maintained by ARIN) NET198 (NET-198-0-0-0-0) 198.0.0.0 - 198.255.255.255

NetRange:       198.81.128.0 - 198.81.191.255
CIDR:           198.81.128.0/18
OriginAS:       
NetName:        OIT-BLK1
NetHandle:      NET-198-81-128-0-1
Parent:         NET-198-80-0-0-1
NetType:        Reassigned
RegDate:        1997-02-11
Updated:        1998-03-30
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/net/NET-198-81-128-0-1

OrgName:        Central Intelligence Agency
OrgId:          CIA-1
Address:        GCS, ND1
City:           Washington
StateProv:      DC
PostalCode:     20505
Country:        US
RegDate:        1992-07-22
Updated:        2008-10-20
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/org/CIA-1

NetRange:       198.80.0.0 - 198.81.255.255
CIDR:           198.80.0.0/15
OriginAS:       
NetName:        BLK198-15-ANS
NetHandle:      NET-198-80-0-0-1
Parent:         NET-198-0-0-0-0
NetType:        Direct Allocation
RegDate:        1993-03-26
Updated:        2002-10-10
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/net/NET-198-80-0-0-1

OrgName:        ANS Communications, Inc
OrgId:          ANS
Address:        22001 Loudoun County Parkway
City:           Ashburn
StateProv:      VA
PostalCode:     20147
Country:        US
RegDate:        1991-07-12
Updated:        2009-12-07
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/org/ANS


I'm fairly sure their public facing stuff is hosted by ANS Communications. And ANS stands for...
Spoiler:
AOL Network Services
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby JeromeWest » Mon Aug 01, 2011 2:20 pm UTC

Glass Fractal wrote:What kind of misinformation are you worried about, exactly? A fake history of the CIA? Inaccurate career prospects? Wait, don't tell me, they could make the Kid's Page seem ridiculous!


Haha, yeah, kid's page! Or the Chemical/Biological/Radiological Incident Handbook! Lulz.

Or they could hack the "Contact" page:-

"If you have information which you believe might be of interest to the CIA in pursuit of the CIA's foreign intelligence mission, you may use the form below. We will carefully protect all information you provide, including your identity."

But I'm sure that'd be nothing to worry about.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Samik » Mon Aug 01, 2011 2:21 pm UTC

ironmagma wrote:
nico wrote:alt-text, however, is not confusing and it is descriptive: is the text to display in alternative to an image when the image cannot be displayed. The fact that in the olden times certain browsers used to popup the alt-text on mouseover is completely irrelevant, as they were never supposed to do that in the first place.


Except that the text we're talking about is not in the alt attribute.

I could be reading it wrong, but I think that was precisely his point. "Alt-text" has a well defined purpose that is plainly not the purpose being served by Randall's title-text, thus making "title-text" the less undesirable of the two names.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby cphite » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:04 pm UTC

Glass Fractal wrote:
JeromeWest wrote:
Glass Fractal wrote:If there's a need to protect the CIA website more so than, say, xkcd.com then they've done something terribly wrong. In fact they can probably protect it less than xkcd since their livelyhoods aren't based on its activity.


The potential to post misinformation on the official site of a government agency is less dangerous than the ability to post misinformation on a webcomic site (even an awesome one)?


What kind of misinformation are you worried about, exactly? A fake history of the CIA? Inaccurate career prospects? Wait, don't tell me, they could make the Kid's Page seem ridiculous!


They could change the contact information, and so let's say you stumble upon a plot by Luxembourg to take over the world, and you contact the CIA to report it... the guy who answers the phone claims to be a CIA representative, but is actually a Luxembourgian operative who only pretends to take down the information you provide, and then laughs at you after the call is over. The next day you wake up and the entire world is controlled by Luxembourg, which is revealed to actually be simply a puppet state of France, which itself turns out to be a puppet state of invaders from Neptune. Now the entire world is enslaved by Neptune, all because someone changed the contact information for the CIA. So, as you can see, this is a pretty big deal.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Sprocket » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:10 pm UTC

That all depends on what the CIA uses their website for. I mean, lots of businesses and such have to have very secure websites because they contain access to a lot of important shit, and people who work for those businesses use those websites to gain access to the things they need to do their jobs. In this case I'd say it's perhaps more like "Someone temporarily barricaded a really useful door at the CIA"
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Maxpm » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:26 pm UTC

(D)DoS attacks aren't really attacks. I'd call them technical harassment.

If some guy were pestering you when you were talking to someone else, would you accuse him of assault?
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby Harry Voyager » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:38 pm UTC

See, the thing you have to remember about reporters it that they really don't know about anything other than how to write dramatic phrases in reduced type space.
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby RevengencerAlf » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:45 pm UTC

I have this discussion with someone nearly every day. They equate the vandalizing of a website's main page or a DDOS attack that makes it inaccessible for a few hours or days some kind of super scary hack. It makes me sad that I have to engage in the kind of pedagogy that is telling them their comparison is saying some kid who drew on an ATM with a sharpie is at the same level as a bank heist that made off with millions.

Yes, there could be serious if unlikely consequences if they quietly changed some information like a contact number and left the page looking otherwise normal, but the relevant debate is if someone really "beat" the CIA's security and the answer probably lies somewhere between "no, not really" and "yes but there was nothing to protect so the CIA didn't really try."
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Re: 0932: "CIA"

Postby SpringLoaded12 » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:10 pm UTC

unus vox wrote:And if somebody figures out what my facebook password is, I have been hacked! THE HACKERS ARE EVERYWHERE

Someone was using an aimbot in Call of Duty the other day! ARE THEY PART OF THE SAME HACKER GROUP?! IT MUST BE HUGE

Also, I like your sig.
"It's easy to forget what a sin is in the middle of a battlefield." "Opposite over hypotenuse, dipshit."
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