Sounds like a stupid thing to say doesn’t it – I mean who has a digital identity? But alas we all have nowadays, at least if you participate in 21st century life at all.
So when you think about it, the reality is a little more worrying. It’s really about everything you do online being monitored. Now that’s does scare me – mainly because it happens. How much of your life happens via a phone or the internet?
Anyway the worry I have is this – most Western Democracies have access to everything you do online for the last couple of years. Of course there’s some vague idea that it’s all about catching terrorists but frankly that’s a load of rubbish. I’ll take my chances on any plane if the terrorist has been thick enough to post his plans online on Facebook or Twitter – chances are they’ll blow themselves up on the way to the airport or at the car park ticket machine. After all it’s not difficult to fix yourself up with a false IP address!
Not going to happen – so what our agencies and governments are really interested in is all the other information …..like this……………………
From my ISP logs dated 21/12/11 when I returned home from the Cross Lanes Hotel ( Geo location enabled on my Iphone).
My location established from my phone.
After drinking one bottle of South African Shiraz and paying my bill – (via internet enabled till) I watched the Kylie Minogue Agent Provocateur Video several times in a row. When I go for that high powered Government job – it could be a difficult interview question,
or perhaps I could just show them the video ……..
All red blooded and nothing to be ashamed of? Sure but remember they have every web site you visited …in the last two years..
I bet the young people of Iran can hardly contain their excitement. The Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting have just announced the launch of an Iran-only version of the popular video uploading site YouTube. It’s called Mehr and it’s the second video channel accessible only in Iran. Access to YouTube was blocked in 2009 after lots of people posted allegations of vote fraud and election fixing by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Of course there was only circumstantial evidence that the President’s landslide victory was anything but fair, his incredible unpopularity in certain areas didn’t seem to materialize in the ballot box.
Mehr is Farsi for ‘affection’ although I wouldn’t test that principle out by posting anything remotely critical of Ahmadinejad or his regime on the site. The problem that Iran has, and in fact any despotic regime – is that it’s extremely difficult to censor or filter specific parts of the internet. They couldn’t for example just block access to the various videos they don’t like on YouTube or Facebook as it would be impossible to keep track of the content. Blocking the whole of YouTube stops lots of people gaining access within Iran but not all, increasingly people are using circumvention tools to bypass these filters.
Using proxies or VPNs you can bypass these specific filters and the ‘video not available in your country‘ messages and many thousands of Iranians do just that. Unfortunately there is one way to control all access to the internet and that’s to block it completely. It’s the sort of model that you see in North Korea, where the internet is merely a basic intranet consisting of Government created websites with all access to the outside world blocked. It is suspected widely that Iran is heading in this direction with the creation of these internal versions of popular sites.
The Iranian government are frequently complaining about the way they are portrayed by bloggers, the media and journalists in general – so it is invitable that the current regime will pull the plug at some point if they stay in power. Anyway there’s no point posting the link to the Mehr website but relishing the irony I will post a link to the Mission for Establishment of Human Rights in Iran also known as MEHR.
Ever seen this message, your mate has just sent you a message something like – “you have to watch this, I lolzed so much I nearly died. Lol lol”. So you make a mental note to get some cleverer mates, then click on his link and are presented with a YouTube message like this -
It might not be that specific one, it might be the – Video is not available in your country, or this video is not available – pretty annoying huh!
There are a variety of reasons for these messages but the vast majority of them are due to your IP address or more specifically the location of your IP address. Some are blocked automatically (like lots of BBC content outside the UK), some blocked by Youtube and some like this example specifically targeted by the person who uploaded it. So let’s take this video as an example - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYYUdDNJXaw&feature=related
the uploader appears to be from Germany
It’s likely that this video relates to some some of movie, music or TV show that is only licensed for free in Germany. So when YouTube checks our location we will be blocked (I’m in the UK at the moment). Anyway what we are going to do is use Identity Cloaker to connect via a German proxy server and then try and view the video again.
So when we start YouTube it will now think we are in Germany and so apply restrictions based on this country. Now we can see the video and don’t get the – Video Not Available in your Country error message. Sorry it’s so small – graphic size was huge when I uploaded, click on it to make it a bit bigger.
It’s actually a movie broadcast by the German TV company Kanal which is why it’s been uploaded with the restriction of being seen only in Germany. Remember though when you are using a German proxy server, you may get blocked from other stuff which you can normally see without problems. It’s a pain but I’m afraid you need to switch servers depending on where the site is based – the most essential to have are firstly your home country and then probably fast UK IP Address, US and a good European server in somewhere like France or Germany.
So if you want to say goodbye to all these Video Not Available messages invest in a proxy service or hunt down some free ones online if you have time.
From my experiences as a parent and from speaking in local schools about the internet, I am convinced young people have little idea of the dangers of sharing too much of your life online. I often speak to young people who have 2000 friends listed on their Facebook account who think they are really their friends! But here is a story of a beautiful young girl who suffered at the hands of internet bullies.
I won’t say too much on this post – I’m afraid it’s really sad but worth watching. First we have a video posted by a young lady called Amanda Todd who was bullied both online and in real life. She doesn’t speak but tells her story using paper cards.
The story unfortunately doesn’t end well as you’ve probably guessed from the title. This is despite Amanda moving schools and trying to start again. It didn’t help as her cyber stalker pursued her – she committed suicide on the 10th October, 2012 by hanging herself. She was basically bullied into taking her own life….when she was 15 years old.
Well it’s finally happened – they are over a year late, but the new version of Identity Cloaker has been released. I was going to post a review but I’m afraid I got sidetracked listening to Rock tunes on YouTube.
Ok and I had a couple of beers too – the review is coming, it’s an incredible program. But in the mean time – it’s ACDC …..
But check in here soon – I’ll have a serious breakdown of the new version of Identity Cloaker.
Ok I love Turkey, but doing business there is so hard work!! But my frustration waiting for yet another piece of paper in an office in Ankara simply melted away when I heard this – a fabulous performance…
If you’re not in the UK – you’ll need a proxy or security program (like Identity Cloaker) to give you access I’m afraid.
More security stuff coming next post I promise………………………time to hack your neighbors Wifi….
Well nothing about technology again – probably because I have spent the day fixing extremely crap DNS installations and have become overwhelmed with the futility of existence. But fortunately my mood was saved by this (well this and alcohol) so I had to share this wonderful video.
Kinda puts life’s little tribulations in context doesn’t it.
You’d think computer companies would learn wouldn’t you, when you see someone who points out a problem with your code, hardware or processes then you should thank them, embrace them – heck employ them if you can. Apple however have failed dismally in their response to Charlie Millers assistance on highlighting the problems in the App Store security process.
Photo Charlie Miller - Twitter@0xcharlie
I means there’s two types of people out there who do this sort of hacking – white hat guys like Charlie Miller who will demonstrate the vulnerabilities, publish proof of concepts and let the company know. Of course it can be slightly embarassing sometimes when you’ve dropped a bit of a clanger but there is an upside.
The upside is that the other type of people don’t get chance to figure it out – the Bulgarian uber hacker working underground for a Russian or Brazilian cyber criminal gang who exploit the hole after they’ve found it.
So what did Charlie Miller actually do?
Well it’s probably best to let the author demonstrate – make sure you watch it until the end to see the full extent of what this hack is capable of !
Pretty incredible heh!! The potential of this in the hands of the bad guys is probably what scared Apple and made them act like a spoilt brat by kicking Charlie Miller off the iOS developer program. White hat hackers as talented as this guy should be treated a bit better even if he did perhaps break a few little terms and conditions to illustrate the vulnerability.
I haven’t thought about the criminal possibilities of this but I am sure there are many beyond downloading every ones address book. I confess I’m still stuck on the prank possibilities of having every iPhone on the planet vibrate at exactly the same time. Pointless but fun and pandering to my inner megalomania without causing any real harm! If only I was as clever as Charlie Miller !!
Hopefully the kicking Apple is currently getting in the online media for their reaction will make them think again. Perhaps in some high up meeting somewhere in Apple Towers it will occur to someone that they should be actually thanking this guy. Otherwise they should get worried if he starts taking long holidays in Moscow next year.