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  • Airport security complaints rise 26%Airport security is a thankless job or, if you're the TSA, 56000 jobs. The US Transportation Security Agency was just blasted (again) for failing to enforce its own rules on employees, despite their claim of zero-tolerance for misconduct in the workplace.
     
    According to Reuters, a report released by the Government Accountability Office found an unprecedented 3808 misconduct complaints filed against TSA workers just last year. Allegations include the use of drugs and alcohol by TSA agents on duty, 'inconsistent' use of security devices such as X-ray scanners, wands, embezzling electronics and other property, sleeping on the job, not showing up for work, etc.  
  • Psst! Wanna be anonymous?Most of us find the vast expanse of the Web more than a little overwhelming, so we rarely have an opportunity to think about 'what else might be out there'.

    Most people are also vaguely aware of the existence of a rich universe of virtual worlds layered across the vastness of the Internet. These make it possible for millions of people to spend a significant portion of their time interacting in digital universes or collaborating across obscure academic, military or commercial networks.

    To those people, the rest of us exist on the surface. The clearnet - or surface Web - is more than a nickname. It's a hint as to how this abstract universe is stacked, digitally overlaid atop the ecosystems of the Deep Web whose secretive existence is made that much more intriguing by its diversity of names. Indeed much of what exists below the Web we know goes by nicknames such as Darknet, Undernet, hidden Web or Invisible Web.

  • Defeating snoopersRevelations that global communications are being monitored more aggressively than previously imagined have sent the public looking for software to protect their privacy. This is a good opportunity to give you a "defense-in-depth" idea of what it might look like to use different layers of encryption in your everyday computing.

    Whether you’re a high flying executive or a stay-at-home mom, you have probably thought a lot about what privacy means to you. Do you ambitiously entertain notions of anonymity and confidentiality or simply hope to retain some control over the information you enter into your computer and send over the wires? Either way, here's something to get you started.
  • State-Sponsored Attackers Targeting MeFor most of us, the carousel of headlines breathlessly announcing – and denouncing - foreign government sponsorship of hacking is a distant, almost romantic notion. The idealistic motives behind the dissemination of malware (like StuxNet) and the brief time spent imagining the business of coordinating virtual world activity initiated in the real world offers little more than the occasional fleeting distraction. I dare say however that few things train the mind like the deadpan delivery of a serious warning pointed squarely at our freedoms.
    “We believe state-sponsored attackers may be attempting to compromise your account or computer. Protect yourself now.”
  • News that will send you scrambling (your data)This may hint at my advancing years, but I distinctly recall being in awe, at least a couple of decades ago, at the ambitious scope of an international effort of cross-espionage called ECHELON that had already been in operation for some 30 years. It was an undertaking of massive proportions where 5 countries (the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) agreed to monitor Eastern Bloc communications while protecting their respective citizens against surreptitious domestic surveillance. So – get this – each member country demonstrated respect for the privacy of its own people by allowing the others to spy on them, and they each had to reciprocate in kind before ostensibly pooling the data. This heart warming standard of care is perhaps owed to the fact that the pesky notion of privacy had been freshly introduced in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and preceded ECHELON by about a decade.
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