Computer Crime for Law Enforcement Professionals – a Glossary


One would be hard-pressed to come up with a segment more under-prepared for their challenge than law enforcement professionals faced with the task of policing the world of computing. Detective work was much simpler when everybody and his mother didn’t have a computer. Herein, some basic terms to get you started.

HACKER: The meaning of the word hacker has been corrupted from its original intention. Originally, it meant somebody who was very good at programming. The members of the MIT labs, AT&T Bell labs, and Xerox Parc originally referred to themselves as ‘hackers’, in much the same way that a ranch worker would use the title ‘cowboy’. Not everybody who calls themselves ‘hacker’ today is admitting to criminal activity. Nevertheless, there has been much awareness of how the term has changed, so that now a security professional working in computers may designate their specialty with a hat color system: e. g. a ‘white hat hacker’ programs security and encryption software, a ‘black hat hacker’ practices overcoming security and encryption, etc. Outside of the security field, the term hacker has fallen widely out of use.

CRACKER: What the public actually means when they say ‘hacker’. A cracker breaks into networks and servers for all variety of crimes requiring access, ranging from identity theft to setting up a botnet. Contrary to the popular Hollywood image, a cracker in fact is not particularly adept at programming or computers in general, but is merely exploiting a widely-known (in the underground) security hole in a given system usually using a simple tool downloaded from a “hacking” website. A cracker is no more a computer wizard than a car thief is a master mechanic. In fact, the nature of breaking into computers and breaking into houses and cars is almost identical.

CYBERSTALKING: The most common complaint you will be dealing with in street police work. People will use the Internet to stalk and harass their intended victim. The tools for discovering personal details of someone are widely available on the web. It is suggested that you try to use online “people finder” services to see how much information there is available about yourself, for starters.

It is quite easy to find out last known address from a name, a name and location from a website address, a location and service provider for an IP address, personal details for a chat room screen nick or email address, and so on. A dedicated stalker will use every service at their disposal, compiling information from various sources until they at least have a way to contact their target, if not steal their target’s identity.

PIRACY: This can be anything from the ‘ripping’ (breaking copy protection) of commercial software which is then posted online for resale or ratio-download (called ‘warez’) to the copying and distribution of media (CDs, DVD movie, etc.). If you thought the war on drugs was out of hand, you’ll have a similar feeling about Internet piracy. There is effectively nothing that can be done to cure the problem, only half-measures to stifle it. The issue is mired in the international business and laws of the world, the hazy issue of how far copyright extends under what circumstances, the various definitions of fair use, and the blundering incompetency of such entities as the RIAA, which is more likely to harass innocent grandmothers (who accidentally received an unauthorized tune in their electronic greeting card) than go after a real pirate.

Furthermore, digital protections against piracy do nothing to stop real pirates, but are great for preventing you from watching the DVD movie that you paid for on your PC. It may be ten years yet before the world gets a handle on this. In the mean time, take piracy accusations with a grain of salt, and only pursue an investigation if you know the suspect is actually running a large-scale piracy operation for profit.

IDENTITY THEFT: Related to the above entry on cyber stalking, this has a different motive. Instead of the perpetrator having a personal grudge against the victim, this is for profit. Mainly credit card numbers and bank data are targeted, and then sold internationally for sums of money. The means of stealing the data can be anything from ‘dumpster diving’ for receipts and discarded paperwork, to theft of computers containing customer databases to online scams to con gullible users into surrendering personal data. A huge underground, international market exists for this activity, and it is even said that identity theft drives “the new mafia”.

PHISHING: The number-one method of online identity theft. Phishing is a very basic process: you just build a web site that looks just like a bank web site, spam emails to potential bank customers with a link to the fake site and some kind of story about how they need to come to it and re-enter their data (frequently the story is that the bank’s site crashed and they have to update their financial records), then record the data and sell it to the stolen identity market. A large segment of the population is shockingly trusting of phishing scams.

‘419’: This is the most common variety of online confidence scheme. Instead of posing as a bank site, the perpetrator poses as any variety of fanciful characters and tells a story hoping to get money out of the victim. The classic ‘419’ scam is to pose as a foreign price who has a huge amount of money they need to store, and offers to give some to the victim. The victim is then gradually coerced through subsequent online correspondence to send the perpetrator money for some made-up reason like ‘processing fees’.

This is also known as the ‘advance fee fraud’. The variations range as far as human imagination permits, and includes posing as a lottery authority notifying the victim that they’ve ‘won’, a lawyer notifying the victim of an inheritance from a distant relative, soap-opera-like kidnapping plots where the victim is persuaded that they’re rescuing a victim by paying a ransom, and highly fanciful plots worthy of a novel. In some countries, profits from ‘419’ scams actually count as a sizable portion of their gross domestic product!

BOTNET: This involves infecting the target computer with a virus whose purpose is to take over the target computer, turning it into the criminal’s puppet. These are always large-scale operations, with a global network of “zombie” computers operating at the criminal’s whim, who then unites the machines in a botnet and uses it to perpetrate another crime such as spamming, attacks against web servers, identity theft, and so on. The “master” of a botnet is sometimes referred to as a ‘herder’. The victim is never aware that their computer has become part of these zombie networks. This is again a part of the international cyber-crime scene.

Freelance writer for over eleven years.

Security Uniforms Formal Wear Uniform Scrubs

1020-20120118 Save the LOL Cats
internet piracy
Image by Chris Piascik
Daily Drawing #1019: Save the LOL Cats – #SOPA

Related Internet Piracy Articles

Illegal Music Downloads And The Law


Ever since broadband was set up and made readily available to the general public, illegal music downloads have gone through the roof. Today, approximately 95% of all downloads are illegal and some 6.5m broadband users illegally download music on a daily basis.

Earlier this year, the music industry decided that enough was enough and that this multi million pound purge needed to stop. Discussions with John Hutton (The Business Secretary), Andy Burnham (The Culture Secretary) and major internet service providers (ISPs) resulted in tough new proposals governing the illegal download scene.

At this point, it is perhaps worth outlining the law when it comes to downloading music. The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (CDPA) is the current UK copyright law and gives the creators of literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works the right to control the ways in which their material may be used. These rights cover broadcast and public performance, copying, adapting, issuing, renting and lending copies to the public. By downloading music files illegally, you are in breech of the copying part of this law.

ISPs have been pressurised into clamping down on persistent illegal downloaders and in June of this year, Virgin Broadband (one of the largest ISPs in the UK) agreed to take steps towards culling downloads. Virgin expect to send out more than 12,000 letters over the course of the summer to internet users warning them to stop their illegal downloads or face restrictions on their service.

So what does this mean for internet downloaders? Well, Virgin are keen not to punish their users, they would rather ‘educate’ them on the wrongs of downloading illegally. Sounds like a cop out and a good way round enforcing the law, but they might not have much choice on this in a year’s time.

Huttin and Burnham, along with bosses from the music industry want tighter rules surrounding illegal downloads. One of the proposals includes placing a 30 GBP annual charge on people who want to download files. This would give users unlimited access to download files from anywhere on the net, without the worry of facing up to law. 30 GBP may not sound a lot, but as Peter Jenner stated; “If you get enough people paying a small amount of money you can turn around the wheels of the music industry.” The funds from these fees are worth almost 1.2bn GBP and would be channelled back to the industry and distributed proportionally back to the relative rights holders.

Obviously looking for the toughest penalties for repeat offenders, industry bosses are calling for a ‘three strikes and you’re out’ policy, similar to the scheme currently employed in France. Persistent offenders would be warned and banned if they didn’t stop. Other proposals include preventative filters which stop the possibility of any illegal download activity or, illegal downloaders’ details being given directly to the music industry for punishment.

Sites like Napster brought illegal downloads to the masses and were relatively untouched by officials for many years until they realised just how much impact illegal downloads were having on the music industry. In 2001, the company were forced to shut down after being found guilty of copyright infringement laws.

Today, Napster is a legitimate trading company and sells downloads instead of offering them for free. iTunes are the biggest players in this market and dominate the scene with a 70% share of legal music downloads. It took less than five years to reach 1bn downloads, and keen to show that legal downloads are the way forward, the company rewarded the downloader, Alex Ostrovsky, with a brand new iMac, ten iPods and a 10,000 USD (5,700 GBP) iTunes voucher. Not a bad return on his 99p investment.

In 2006, the download market really came up trumps when Gnarles Berkley had a hit with Crazy. The song hadn’t even been released on CD when it hit the top spot in the UK charts after Zane Lowe championed the song on his New Music Show.

So will pressure from the industry actually have any effect on downloads? ISPs have already cleared themselves of any wrong doing as they are merely ‘conduits’ of information – they don’t personally hold the files.

Illegal downloads will inevitably continue as new methods of file sharing are discovered and employed. At the end of the day, rules are there to be broken and problems are there to be solved. As long as CDs cost as much as they do, downloaders will see no reason to stop what they are doing. If a CD costs less than 1GBP to produce, the question remains: Why are we charged the earth to purchase them?

Samantha is an expert Research and Theatre consultant. Her current interests are UK shortbreaks including LEGOLAND Windsor and Alton Towers.

internet piracy
Image by jurvetson
Seen all over the Internet Cafés of Croatia. Yar!
(Photo by Emily Melton, our intrepid international photojournalist. =)

Just got back from Utah myself.

P.S. This image has spooky powers. When I loaded it into iPhoto, the thumbnails became corrupted and when I uploaded to Flickr, my Safari browser crashed. Beware, all ye who enter here….

Sociology Method

Sociology Method

The reason for papers in university or college/university levels classes is twofold. First of all, they assist your professor review yourself on what you’ve discovered inside the group. Additionally, these responsibilities prepare you for producing with the school or skilled community. (more…)

Digital commerce or ecommerce could be a expression for almost any style of home business

It handles a variety of various kinds of corporations, from consumer dependent retail internet websites, as a result of closeout or new music internet websites, to online business exchanges exchanging merchandise and solutions between organizations. It can be now among the most imperative aspects of the net to emerge.

Ecommerce permits clients to electronically trade goods and providers without obstacles of your time or distance. Digital commerce has expanded without delay around the earlier 5 years and it is predicted to continue together these very same traces, or speed up. While in the close to long run the boundaries somewhere between “conventional” and “electronic” commerce will developed into more and more blurred as increased and much more companies go sections in their functions onto the internet. (more…)

Scholastic Condition Unfaithful

Scholastic Condition Unfaithful

Youngsters, younger years, thou hadst superior be starv’d by thy health professional Than dwell being hanged for cutting a handbag. (Elizabethan well-liked tune)

The scholastic venture will require encountering the modern world as it really is, warts and all sorts of. (more…)

Downloading Movies To Zune


Every Zune owner would loves downloading movies, music, and games to their Zune. However, the cost of downloading a lot of music, movies, and games for Zune adds up fast and can become real expensive. Another thing is that popular file formats such as AVI, MPEG 1, MPEG 2 do not work for Zune. This is not a problem, because oyu can download a conversion software on the internet fro free, which will convert any file into a file format your Zune recognizes.

Accessing free videos, music and game applications can be a headache if you don’t know your way around the internet, and even more so if you are not hip to the online lingo for getting free stuff. There are some popular ways of getting free downloads for your Zune player, that can be very dangerous at the same time. P2P sites are popular because they are generally easy to use, and allow direct person-to-person sharing of files. However, because of this, you leave yourself completely vulnerable to viruses, spyware, and other things that are not good for your computer or your Zune player.

Torrent sites are becoming more and more popular amongst internet savvy pirates , these days. Essentially, what a “torrent” is, is a small file, containing a link to all of the information needed for a particular download, whether it be music, or movies. Torrents are safer than direct p2p sharing, but both systems are completely illegal in the United States. Penalties for internet piracy can be as severe as ten years federal imprisonment, and very hefty fines as high as one hundred thousand dollars per offense, depending on the case. All in all, it isn’t a very good idea to use a p2p client, or torrents, considering that not only can this be damaging to your downloading device (i.e. Zune player), but you can also be federally prosecuted for as little as one file. It just simply is not worth it.

So what do I recommend? The best option to get your hands on unlimited zune movies, music, and games is to join a zune membership site. You will have to pay a small fee. The reason for this is that there are people behind these sites that maintain it, provide cusotmer support etc. As soon as you have paid your membership fee, which is around $ 50 for a lifetime membership, you may download as many Zune movies, music, and games as you can handle. Downloads already come in the right format, so there is no need spending hours converting files.

The biggest Zune download site hosts over six million music files, alone. They also provide downloads of all available media players for free, just in case. Customer service is prompt, courteous, and there are rarely technical issues with the site. All around, the best place to find free movies, games, and music of any genre, for your Zune!

To learn about the best Zune download sites visit Zune Downloads Free. You could start downloading unlimited Zune movies, Zune music, and Zune games within minutes from now.

peace & ecommerce, a global system view
internet piracy
Image by Wonderlane
China is a likely winner of the information age supply chain through ecommerce
Peace and Ecommerce, A Global Systems View

By Linda Lane, MSIM, 2008
Policy, Law, and Ethics in Information Management, University of Washington

The Research Diary
Education justifies everything.
Attending a required Masters class “Policy, Law, and Ethics in Information Management” it was only ethical to admit that I worked three months drafting and publishing policy documents for Microsoft, which was now our current class assignment, to research Web based privacy policies and other related documents such as terms of use, conditions of use, code of conduct and learn more about them, with a diary of examples in the wild, and related materials. The educational idea is that we would then be able to contribute meaningfully to creating policy statements, and understand their underlying implications to end users and companies. But I had already done this work professionally, so it would be of questionable value for me to do the coursework on the same topic as if I had never done it before.

The instructor of the class, Glenn Von Tersch is that valuable-to-me teacher because he is a rare working professional in the field in which he instructs, he’s an intellectual property lawyer working in California, teaching in person in Seattle, and in my lingo, a local boy made good. Von Tersch assigned me to present information on freedom of speech, a topic I fell in love with, and wanted to research more. But for my final research I needed something else.

One of my favorite things to discuss in job interviews, or with anyone in earshot, is that I believe that the networked spread of ecommerce over the Web, filtering into even the poorest nations will aid in understanding through communication; that ecommerce leads to peace. In effect I believed that ecommerce contributes in a direct way to peace because it provides the fuel to grow and maintain the Internet. Also it seemed obvious that people and countries that are invested in and perform transactions with each other are less likely to go war against their own interests. Von Tersch said, “These topics you are interested in have more research value than freedom of speech, because 1st amendment rights have been heavily legislated, written about, and researched.” He mentioned something called “The McDonald’s Effect”, how having a McDonald’s outlet or franchise appears to contribute to peace between countries. So peace and ecommerce became my topic.

What I did not expect to discover is in human society war is considered the norm and peace the exception. I did not expect to learn about how ugly the 3rd world poverty creating monster of WTO became according to one economist, even though I live in Seattle where the initial protests were. I was surprised to know how Reganomics theory hangs on, like an old B-grade movie on late night TV, because someone somewhere in the supply chain makes money. I did not expect to find that privacy and intellectual rights are so tightly interwoven, or how they relate to conflict, security, potential world dominance and growth.

I had no way to guess that I would enjoy the study of economics – statistical, yes, nicely so, but dull no; as a global topic it is juicy-rotten, full of international spies, botched security, with rogue pirate computer chips, and unintended consequences.

Who can accurately predict how patterns of global economics relate to peace, privacy, property rights, policies and their outcome in the one breath away from today, the next 20-40 years? Who would think that China – the nation, McDonalds – the corporation, and Chicago crack dealers and their foot soldiers share so much in common when you view their information through these fascinating multi-dimensional facets?

One must be educated to search effectively for information. My knowing about the nature of search is not just intellectual knowledge; this is conditionalized through my own experience of failure to produce relevant search results within massive library databases.

My education began with a simple query on the Web “peace + ecommerce” which returned from Google “Theses on the Balkan War,” by Mike Haynes, from the International Socialism Journal, “Capitalism is inherently a competitively expansionist and therefore conflict ridden system” , effectively laying the blame for war on the US and Western capitalist nations and on any one claiming to be fighting a war with good intentions. I read it, thinking I would not see this relate to my project – also surprising very similar material was presented in the global economic books I read later .

As mentioned the pursuit of ‘education justifies anything’, like looking at any results, so I also clicked on an article entitled “Dinosaur Extinction linked to change in Dinosaur Culture” I read it, and it made sense that something like author Daniel Quinn’s theory of “The Law of Limited Competition” is an operant factor in global markets today, with war being genocide, and countries struggling to win economically laying waste to the very place they live. A notable example is Beijing, the air pollution capital of the world struggling to host the Olympic Games this year. I stored that URL for future reference. The theory and the reality imply that in the race to catch up and compete in global economics, the Chinese are killing themselves off before they arrive at their desired goal.

Then I queried in several of the University of Washington interconnected and extensive library databases on the same thing “peace + ecommerce” and found in all of them, zero returns, “0 Results”. My teacher was surprised and advised me to extrapolate and offer conjecture on what was likely, if few sources were available. I notified a friend studying economics who emailed related articles. Very frustrated I tried related queries and turned up articles on the economies of war . How perverse, I thought. I contacted a librarian through the online tool and chatted with her, explaining my quest. She suggested I query on “economics and public policy”. “How is public policy related to peace and ecommerce?” I asked. “Try Conflict Resolution” she replied.

Thus the reason I couldn’t find ‘peace’ is because the term used, in educated facet writers’ metadata which is designed to expose information to search, is ‘conflict resolution’ or ‘conflict prevention’. Oddly the social implication is that war is the norm. Maybe peace doesn’t exist anywhere. A reason I used ‘ecommerce’ instead of ‘global economics’ is due to consulting in that field for technology firms. Searching again returned few meaningful results — the user interface was strange, very slow, and clunky. I longed for Google .

Then I remembered the “McDonald’s Effect” our teacher mentioned, and quickly I located a reference on the Web, but it was deeply nested in a staggering number of oddly worded articles. I stopped without uncovering where the concept originated. The next night I searched again, and found the author Thomas Friedman and his related books. I briefly scanned all the related Wikipedia articles. I realized quickly that to become educated enough on my two topics, I had to some understanding of economics. This is because even to scrape by enough to search among the many interrelated topics one needs to know the central facet . Very esoteric topics require specialized language and deep knowledge of the subject.

More searches turned up substantial evidence that China lags behind other nations in ecommerce.

For years I worked in ecommerce designing interfaces (for Microsoft 2003 and Amazon 2007-2008), and working with supply chain software (as a director of an ecommerce company). But because I didn’t realize that one could understand it better, and that it is not as dull as computer science and its requisite cash register receipts , I never tried.

The "McDonald’s Effect" is named after "The Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention" created by the author Thomas Friedman’s slightly in cheek comments and his book, “The Lexus and the Olive Tree” (the update now titled "The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization").

Those books lead me to order Amazon ecommerce overnight book delivery, and I read, ‘The World Is Flat?: A Critical Analysis of New York Times Bestseller by Thomas Friedman’, ‘Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything’ , ‘Making Globalization Work’ which reports that there is hope in the world for peace. The Nobel Prize winning author helps the reader extrapolate based on significant knowledge of statistics and global economic analysis through his personal, professional, and academic connections.

Common Name Academic Name Book Title
McDonalds Effect Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention,
aka democratic peace theory Lexus and the Olive Tree

Dell Theory The Dell Theory of Conflict Prevention The World is Flat, A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century

peace conflict prevention
ecommerce global economics

"In his book, The Lexus and the Olive Tree, Thomas L. Friedman proposed The Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention, observing that no two countries with a McDonald’s franchise had ever gone to war with one another, a version of the democratic peace theory."

"The Dell Theory stipulates: No two countries that are both part of a major global supply chain, like Dell’s, will ever fight a war against each other as long as they are both part of the same global supply chain."
The World Is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century by Thomas Friedman
Larry Page, Google Co-Founder quoted by Thomas Friedman, p. 179, entire paragraph. “The more global Google’s user base becomes, the more powerful a flattener it becomes…”

From Friedman’s conversation with Google’s director of operations in China, Kai-Fu Lee, p. 181 entire paragraph ”In time individuals will have the power to find anything in the world at any time on all kinds of devices – and that will be enormously empowering.”

The Quiet Crisis, entire pages 368, 369, chapter on research in China, beating out American innovation in research. “The Chinese government gave Microsoft the right to grant post-docs.” “They work through their holidays because their dream is to get to Microsoft.”
“What are those?” She said the researchers get them from Microsoft every time they invent something that gets patented. How do you say Ferrari in Chinese.”

p. 370 “… whether we are going to implement or China is going to beat us to our own plan.” Council on Creativeness, regarding the Innovate America report, comment to Friedman by Deborah Wince-Smith.

Introduction p. X, Thomas Friedman, “Of course the world is not flat. But it isn’t round anymore either. I have been using the simple notion of flatness to describe how more people can plug, play, compete, connect, and collaborate with more equal power than ever before – which is what is happening in the world. … the essencial impact of all the technological changes coming together in the world today. … My use of the word flat doesn’t mean equal (as in ‘equal incomes’) and never did. It means equalizing.”

The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization by Thomas Friedman

Forward to the Anchor Edition, Thomas Friedman, “… my Golden Arches Theory – that no two countries that both have McDonald’s have ever fought a war again each other since the each got their McDonald’s.”

p. 7 “When I say that globalization has replaced the Cold War as the defining international system, what exactly do I mean?”

p. 8 “The cold war system was symbolized by a single word, the wall … “You can’t handle the truth,” Says Nickleson. “Son we live in a world that has walls…”

p. 8 “This Globalization system is also characterized by a single word: the Web. … we have gone from a system built around divisions and walls to a system built around integration and webs.”

p. 19 “What is information arbitrage? Arbitrage is a market terms. Technically speaking, it refers to the simultaneous buying and selling of the same securities, commodities or foreign exchange in different markets to predict from unequal prices and unequal information. The successful arbitrageur is a trader that knows…”

Chapter 3, p. 29. The Lexus and the Olive Tree
Photo: Jerusalem, December 29, 1998: Simon Biton places his cellular phone up to the Western Wall so a relative in France can say a prayer at the holy site. (Photo: Menahem Kahana, Agence France-Presse) [caused my spontaneous tears]

p. 47 “advertising jingle “Let us put a bank in your home” … office … newspaper … bookstore … brokerage firm … factory … investment firm … school in our homes.”

The World Is Flat?: A Critical Analysis of New York Times Bestseller by Thomas Friedman by Ronald Aronica and Mtetwa Ramdoo

Freakonomics [Revised and Expanded]: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

Chapter 5 “Why do Drug Dealers Still Live with Their Moms?” p. 89 “So how did the gang work? An awful lot like most American businesses, actually, though perhaps none more so than McDonald’s. In fact, if you were to hold a McDonald’s organizational chart and a Black Disciples org chart side by side, you could hardly tell the difference.”

p. 46 “There is a tale, “The ring of Gygnes,” … could any man resist the temptation of evil if he knew his acts could not be witnessed?”

p. 58 “Attendance at Klan meetings began to fall … of all the ideas Kennedy thought up to fight bigotry, this campaign was clearly the cleverest. … He turned the Klan’s secrecy against itself by making its private information public: he converted heretofore precious knowledge into ammunition for mockery.”

Making Globalization Work by Joseph E. Stiglitz
My favorite – the entire book was used to write this paper.

Web Resources
Please view attached Appendix regarding the reasons one study concludes that hold China back in ecommerce.

[1] Waiting until the time is right, one is good at something, or has collected all the facts, without making any attempts isn’t effective. I had to begin someplace even if it is incomplete so I started with the World Wide Web. “If something is worth doing well, at all, it is also worth doing poorly.” I am not sure where that quote came from but I read it in an article where someone presented their reasoning.

[2] You never know where something will come from in free rights actions or what it will mean later. For example the person at the center of the Alaskan “Bong hits For Jesus” case, Frederick Morse, now teaches English to Chinese students in China. As an adult it appears he has his head on straight in his wish to help others communicate, more so that those he fought in court.

From the CNN news article, published June 26, 2007, “In dissent, Justice John Paul Stevens said, "This case began with a silly nonsensical banner, (and) ends with the court inventing out of whole cloth a special First Amendment rule permitting the censorship of any student speech that mentions drugs, so long as someone could perceive that speech to contain a latent pro-drug message." He was backed by Justices David Souter and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” downloaded March 13, 2008

[3] Pentagon attack last June stole an "amazing amount" of data” Joel Hruska Published: March 06, 2008 – 07:13PM CT… from “blueton tips us to a brief story about recent revelations from the Pentagon which indicate that the attack on their computer network in June 2007 was more serious than they originally claimed. A DoD official recently remarked that the hackers were able to obtain an "amazing amount" of data.

We previously discussed rumors that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army was behind the attack. “CNN has an article about Chinese hackers who claim to have successfully stolen information from the Pentagon.” Quoting Ars Technica: "The intrusion was first detected during an IT restructuring that was underway at the time. By the time it was detected, malicious code had been in the system for at least two months, and was propagating via a known Windows exploit. The bug spread itself by e-mailing malicious payloads from one system on the network to another." Via email from Jeremy Hansen on

[4] “Chinese backdoors "hidden in router firmware" Matthew Sparkes, News [Security], Tuesday 4th March 2008 3:17PM, Tuesday 4th March 2008… The UK’s communication networks could be at risk from Chinese backdoors hidden in firmware, according to a security company.

SecureTest believes spyware could be easily built into Asian-manufactured devices such as switches and routers, providing a simple backdoor for companies or governments in the Far East to listen in on communications.

"Organisations should change their security policies and procedures immediately," says Ken Munro, managing director of SecureTest. "This is a very real loophole that needs closing. The government needs to act fast."

"Would they buy a missile from China, then deploy it untested into a Western missile silo and expect it to function when directed at the Far East? That’s essentially what they’re doing by installing network infrastructure produced in the Far East, such as switches and routers, untested into government and corporate networks."

Late last year MI5 sent a letter to 300 UK companies warning of the threat from Chinese hackers attempting to steal sensitive data. Reports at the time suggested that both Rolls Royce and Royal Dutch Shell had been subjected to "sustained spying assaults".

The issue has been debated by government for some time. In 2001, the then foreign secretary Robin Cook, warned that international computer espionage could pose a bigger threat to the UK than terrorism.

[5] Chip Piracy Might End With Public Key Cryptography. A Web Exclusive from Windows IT Pro Mark Joseph Edwards, Security News, InstantDoc #98491, Windows IT Pro “A group of researchers from two universities have proposed a way to prevent chip piracy. The technique uses public key cryptography to lock down circuitry.

In a whitepaper published this month, Jarrod A. Roy and Igor L. Markov (of the University of Michigan) and Farinaz Koushanfar (of Rice University) outline the problem and details of how their proposed technology will help solve it.

Chip designers sometimes outsource manufacturing and that opens the door to piracy, should someone copy the design plans. The copied plans are then used to created ‘clone’ chips for a wide range of devices, including computers, MP3 players, and more.

"Pirated chips are sometimes being sold for pennies, but they are exactly the same as normal chips," said Igor Markov, associate professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Michigan. "They were designed in the United States and usually manufactured overseas, where intellectual property law is more lax. Someone copies the blueprints or manufactures the chips without authorization."

The groups propose the use of public key cryptography, which would be embedded into circuitry designs. Each chip would produce its own random identification number, which would be generated during an activation phase. Chips would not function until activated, and activation would take place in a manner somewhat similar to that seen with many applications in use today. Via email from Jeremy Hansen.Original source – EPIC: Ending Piracy of Integrated Circuits Jarrod A. Roy, Farinaz Koushanfar‡ and Igor L. Markov, The University of Michigan, Department of EECS, 2260 Hayward Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2121, Rice University, ECE and CS Departments, 6100 South Main, Houston, TX 77005 March 06, 2008

[6] Chapter 5 “Why do Drug Dealers Still Live with Their Moms?” p. 89 “So how did the gang work? An awful lot like most American businesses, actually, though perhaps none more so than McDonald’s. In fact, if you were to hold a McDonald’s organizational chart and a Black Disciples org chart side by side, you could hardly tell the difference.”

[7] Mike Haynes, Theses on the Balkan War, “Capitalism is inherently a competitively expansionist and therefore conflict ridden system” Issue 83 of INTERNATIONAL SOCIALISM JOURNAL Published Summer 1999 Copyright © International Socialism, accessed March 3, 2008.

[8] Readings p.7 “When I say that globalization has replaced the Cold War as the defining international system, what exactly do I mean?” p. 8 “The cold war system was symbolized by a single word, the wall … “You can’t handle the truth,” Says Nicholson. “Son we live in a world that has walls…”p. 8 “This Globalization system is also characterized by a single word: the Web. … we have gone from a system built around divisions and walls to a system built around integration and webs.”

“What is information arbitrage? Arbitrage is a market term. Technically speaking, it refers to the simultaneous buying and selling of the same securities, commodities or foreign exchange in different markets to predict from unequal prices and unequal information. The successful arbitrageur is a trader that knows…”

[9] Shared by miles on Feb 13, 2006 3:39 pm that I located through a…
[10] “As it gears up to host the 2008 Olympic Games Beijing has been awarded an unwelcome new accolade: the air pollution capital of the world.Satellite data has revealed that the city is one of the worst environmental victims of China’s spectacular economic growth, which has brought with it air pollution levels that are blamed for more than 400,000 premature deaths a year”

[11] “What we call ‘war’ is not all bad,” according to Virginia Johnson a former governmental planning consultant, who reminded me, “Without conflict there is no life. You don’t want ‘perfect peace’ there is no movement. The human standard is actually what we broadly call ‘war’; because without conflict, change, motion, growth we would learn nothing, we would have nothing, we would be dead.” Personal conversation, March 14, 2008, Seattle, Washington

[12] Readings Larry Page, Google Co-Founder quoted by Thomas Friedman, p. 179, entire paragraph. “The more global Google’s user base becomes, the more powerful a flattener it becomes…”

[13] Ranganathan, faceted classification, Five Laws of Library Science,, Personality, Matter, Energy, Space, and Time. (PMEST)
Personality—what the object is primarily “about.” This is considered the “main facet.”
Matter—the material of the object
Energy—the processes or activities that take place in relation to the object
Space—where the object happens or exists
Time—when the object occurs


[15] I learned about supply chain management mainly from the supply chain wizard Marc Lamonica, Regional Chief Financial Officer at Sutter Connect,, and our mutual friend Web entrepreneur and ecommerce product engineer Adam Kalsey, and Sacramento State University teacher Stuart Williams, of,

[16] Introduction to Computer software classes in the 1970s consisted of FORTRAN cash register receipt programming, which is by implication is what ecommerce actually does.

[17] Freakonomics is a must read book of comedy and connections.

[18] Golden Arches, definition on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, accessed March 13, 2008

[19] Readings “The World Is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century” by Thomas Friedman, p. 421

[20] Readings p. 19 “What is information arbitrage? Arbitrage is a market term. Technically speaking, it refers to the simultaneous buying and selling of the same securities, commodities or foreign exchange in different markets to predict from unequal prices and unequal information. The successful arbitrageur is a trader that knows…”

[21] “Conservation groups say acid rain falls on a third of China’s territory and 70% of rivers and lakes are so full of toxins they can no longer be used for drinking water.” Satellite data reveals Beijing as air pollution capital of world, Jonathan Watts in Beijing The Guardian, Monday October 31 2005,

[22] “…After watching Jobs unveil the iPhone, Alan Kay, a personal computer pioneer who has worked with him, put it this way who has worked with him, put it this way: "Steve understands desire." … Fortune CNN Magazine March 5, 2008,…
accessed March 5, 2008

[23] Mac Margolis, “How Brazil Reversed the Curse, Latin America used to suffer the deepest gap between rich and poor. Now it is the only region narrowing the divide. Upwardly Mobile: Middle-class Brazilians” NEWSWEEK Nov 12, 2007 Issue

[24] Mike Haynes, Theses on the Balkan War, “Capitalism is inherently a competitively expansionist and therefore conflict ridden system” Issue 83 of INTERNATIONAL SOCIALISM JOURNAL Published Summer 1999 Copyright © International Socialism, accessed March 3, 2008. “The optimism that the end of the Cold War might lead to a new world order has been shown to be false. The hope that it would release a peace dividend that would enable a new generosity in international relations has been belied by experience, as some of us sadly predicted it would.3 Though the arms burden has declined, there has been no outpouring of aid to Eastern Europe, no new ‘Marshall Plan’. The result has been that the burden of change has fallen on the broad masses of the population, wrecking lives across the old Soviet bloc in general and in one of its poorest components in south eastern Europe in particular. According to the World Bank, the number of people living in poverty (defined as having less than a day) in the former Soviet bloc has risen from 14 million in 1990 to 147 million in 1998.4 Worse still, the advanced countries have continued to reduce further the miserly sums they devote to aid to the even poorer areas of the world. The OECD countries are rhetorically committed to an aid target of 0.7 percent of their output. In 1990 they gave 0.35 percent, and by 1997 the figure had fallen to 0.22 percent, with the United States under this heading giving 0.09 percent of its output, a figure in startling contrast to the expenditure devoted to destruction.”5

[25] Readings p. 46 “There is a tale, “The ring of Gygnes,” … could any man resist the temptation of evil if he knew his acts could not be witnessed?”

[26] Readings p. 58 “Attendance at Klan meetings began to fall … of all the ideas Kennedy thought up to fight bigotry, this campaign was clearly the cleverest. … He turned the Klan’s secrecy against itself by making its private information public: he converted heretofore precious knowledge into ammunition for mockery.”

Some of the research in this paper on piracy, was provided by Jeremy Hansen of Seattle, Washington, USA. Mr. Hansen’s email regarding economics served to inform me on this topic. Teacher: Glenn Von Tersch.

The Emerging Dilemma Of Ebook Piracy


We’ve all heard about the plagues that face the music and movie industry with respect to digital piracy. Ever since the advent of MP3s, free music has been abundantly available to those who choose to download their music at no cost.

By choosing to get the music for free, such as on a platform for sharing files or a torrent website, this definitely puts a hurting on the sales of a lot of artists. The same is true with the movie industry when the movies are recorded first by movie pirates before they upload them to the sharing platforms.

Most recently, it seems like this problem has spread to yet another medium. All of a sudden, e-books are now being shared via this means and it seems that the issue may be growing.

So many books are being put in digital form and it is quite easy to get them by going to a torrent or file sharing site and downloading them illegally without paying anything.

Tablet PCs and the Kindle are pretty popular digital mediums that enable the proliferation of the books through digital means.

This could potentially be a sharp blow to the publishing industry, and people should really consider their actions before taking part in such illegal activity.

Writers are only able to spend the time researching and writing their works because of the sales they can expect down the line. If the industry takes a hit, we may be left with a world devoid of much high quality writing as a result.

It is my belief that almost all of us do realize that we would surely be in a bad position if that should occur, so the best thing to do is to stop this illegal activity if you are doing it.

Throughout the second quarter of 2009, e-book sales went above $ 37 million and, because of that, regulators are going to be made to deal with this issue as the use of e-books keeps growing and growing.

Besides publishing, the writer additionally regularly contributes articles on metal storage shelves and glass display shelves.

internet piracy
Image by Alrunia
as far as I know, this one is FACTUALLY INCORRECT. so, you know, you probs don’t want to use it anywhere. But it’s a pretty picture so I’m leaving it here anyway.

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E-commerce refers to the online transaction of businesses.

It involves select and sales and profits that are facilitated because of the online world. From the internet buying is, yet, not limited to profits and purchases only. There’s a wide range of varieties during which e-commerce choose destination, for example, in electronic payment, by going online auctions, web based ticketing and banking.

Genres of E-commerce

Classification of e-commerce is done basing for the contributors inside a transaction. Internet marketing business -Business e-commerce happens when the events transacting are traders, merchants, or suppliers. Business-consumer can be a situation that happens whenever a company company sells to the buyer electronically. (more…)

Media Piracy and Law Enforcement


Once upon a time, music played for free on the radio. And you could record a cassette if you wanted to, and you could listen to it as many times as you wanted to, and nobody thought you were a pirate if you shared it with your friends. In fact, this was seen as a way for new bands to break into the market; quite frequently receiving a mix tape would be motivation to buy the album of the band whose song was included.

What little concern there was over music piracy was restricted to “bootleg” tapes made at concerts. Even one of the most outspokenly liberal musicians ever, Frank Zappa, vented in vain at bootleg tapes of his music. He went so far as to include the tape of an interview expressing his anger with this practice at the beginning of his “As An Am” album, part of his “Beat the Boots” project. But even at its most vampiric, the bootleg recording industry was hardly able to suck off more than a single-digit percentage of profits.

But then the Internet happened. And suddenly, through it, the sharing of a home-made recording suddenly became something you could provide to thousands of people instead of one or two friends. Where even the recording of several purchased CDs onto cassette tape was only moderately a big deal before, now it is a major industry.

The media piracy issue is one of the most vitriolic hot-button issues in today’s Internet culture. The major factors being:

* The RIAA. The Recording Industry Association of America may live on in history as being one of the most ineffective measures of copyright protection the world has ever seen. Its methods have been draconian, never once catching a pirate, but relentlessly pursuing everyone from soccer moms to grandmothers to even dead people with a lawsuit for receiving a pirated tune, which in and of itself is not even a crime. Funded by the not-particularly successful record labels and armed with a battalion of lawyers, the RIAA’s practices have so far been futile at stopping piracy and harassing of legitamate users.

* Sony – became the laughing stock of 2006 with the Rootkit Fiasco. Sony included a malicious program on several music CDs, which installed a computer program called a “rootkit” on any computer you stuck them into, for the purposes of preventing unauthorized copying. The attempt backfired two ways: not only did it do nothing to prevent copying, but it crippled the software on the computer by compromising its security layer; any hacker looking to break into a computer need only look for the rootkit and they were in! Sony faced consumer lawsuits for this attempt and had to distribute an uninstaller for the rootkit, which itself was another botch in that it introduced more security holes into the system after patching its own rootkit. Sony lost millions of customers with this fiasco, many of whom swore publicly that they would never trust Sony again.

* The DMCA. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act is the United States copyright law which both criminalizes production and dissemination of technology, devices, or services that are used to circumvent measures that control access to copyrighted works and criminalizes the act of circumventing an access control, even when there is no infringement of copyright itself. This law has since endured no end to controversy, and is in the process of being reformed. The DMCA is said to be anti-competitive; because it gives copyright holders and the technology companies (including the ones convicted of monopolistic practices under anti-trust laws) that distribute their content the legal power to create closed technology platforms and exclude competitors from inter-operating with them. Once again, DRM technologies are clumsy and ineffective; they inconvenience legitimate users but do nothing to stop pirates.

The whole problem with copyright protection stems from the haziness of defining at what point someone has broken the law. Say I bought an album on tape cassette, brought it home, and played it on my stereo so that my whole family can hear it. I’m not a pirate yet. I upgraded my stereo to a new model and copied that album to a compact disk so that my new stereo can play it. Obviously, I haven’t stolen anything here, but now I might be breaking a law intended to stop me from copying it for piracy purposes. If I play it so my whole family can hear it in the living room, that should be no different from if I made a separate CD copy for each member of my family so they can all listen to it in their bedrooms with their headphones on. Am I a pirate now?

The further problem is that digital protections against copyright are platform and player-specific. There has been a whole quagmire of different devices such as the Apple iPod, Microsoft Zune, handheld game consoles, cell phones, and other devices capable of recording, storing, and playing back music. These features are sold to us as benefits of the device, and yet when we get them home we find that we have to pay for the song some six times to be able to listen to it on each device – if indeed (as is seldom the case) the song has even been ported to that platform! Subscribing to a DRM-protected device further restricts the user’s freedom to switch to a different device – you’re locked in, and would be breaking the law if you moved the media from one device to another – even if you, yourself, wrote and recorded that song at home!

The turmoil over media piracy isn’t likely to end any time soon. Fortunately, the legal system has so far left the enforcement of copyright concerns to private industry, which isn’t doing such a hot job of enforcing copyright anyway. Consider that any country in the world can host any media pirate and in fact several countries do just that, with no laws to stop them. Pirated media is very big business in some countries, not because they want to steal, but simply because they want that media to play on their own independently produced digital devices. Remember when you could just buy a record and drop it on any record player and it would just play?

Freelance writer for over eleven years.

Uniforms Formal Clothing Uniform Scrubs

CISPA – The solution is the problem
internet piracy
Image by DonkeyHotey
CISPA – another bad law that undermines citizen rights while purporting to solve a problem.

"They" won’t be satisfied until they completely bypass the 4th Ammendment. "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." This is part of a never ending rain of over broad legal maneuvers designed to limit citizen’s rights of property and free speech including: SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, the DMCA, Sonny Bono Act and more.

Read more about it: CISPA Isn’t ‘Son of SOPA’ (But That’s Not Saying Much) by Brock N. Meeks on Wired Threat Level.

The source image for the truck in this cartoon is a Creative Commons licensed photo from Joelk75’s Flickr Photostream.

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