Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Stupid Names on the Internet Are Safe

This via Boing Boing is the end of an interesting story:
But let’s say he did know, and failed to stop it. Hell, for the sake of argument, let’s say he did it. Let’s say he pulled the trigger. The weird thing is, I’m not even especially angry at Phobia, or his partner in the attack. I’m mostly mad at myself. I’m mad as hell for not backing up my data. I’m sad, and shocked, and feel that I am ultimately to blame for that loss.

But I’m also upset that this ecosystem that I’ve placed so much of my trust in has let me down so thoroughly. I’m angry that Amazon makes it so remarkably easy to allow someone into your account, which has obvious financial consequences. And then there’s Apple. I bought into the Apple account system originally to buy songs at 99 cents a pop, and over the years that same ID has evolved into a single point of entry that controls my phones, tablets, computers and data-driven life. With this AppleID, someone can make thousands of dollars of purchases in an instant, or do damage at a cost that you can’t put a price on.
One of the major factors in figuring out this guy's information was that he consistently used his name for email addresses. I think I might reorganize some accounts to refer back to other fictional accounts rather than things attached to my name. I have a pretty cool but unused email address I could use as a contact, and then set up some mail forwarding to get alerts from it (and also to keep it live).

I actually feel kind of dumb for sending something to a USian via Amazon recently just because Amazon's protocols seem so stupid. And then there's Apple binding everything to an Apple ID...

ALTERNATE TROLLY TITLE:

Gosh Darn It That Cloud Didn't Help At All.

28 comments:

vacuumslayer said...

Good news for me because my name is pretty stupid.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

You might get in touch with that Righteous Bubba fellow. I've heard he knows internet security.
~

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

But I have been told that the cloud is the solution to EVERYTHING, including back pimples.

vacuumslayer said...

Ewwwwww

mikey said...

But I have been told that the cloud is the solution to EVERYTHING, including back pimples.

Huh. Whoever told you that is an idiot. My personal position is that utilizing cloud compute resources is a better, more useful and cost effective solution to digital content creation, storage and communications. I guess some people just take it to extremes or something.

Of course, nobody ever got hacked before cloud computing, and so we should even avoid web mail because that way we'll be so much safer and more secure. Right?

Or, we could recognize that blaming the infrastructure for an attack on an individual's account is like blaming the highway system for your own auto accident, but then, again, whatever makes you feel better. I'm sure substance will put up his own on premises mail server and never buy another thing online again, and keep all his files on those robust, secure $79 USB hard drives.

Yep. Reckon that'll solve the problem...

Substance McGravitas said...

TROLLING WORKS.

In this case the problem is really one of identity protocols and not the cloud BUT this guy had a bunch of devices all hooked into the cloud: once in there the bad guys took all of his cloud-connected devices.

So PEBKAC is part of his disaster, Apple and Amazon are another part, and what the cloud can bring you - seamless interconnectivity - can be a problem in itself. So a point for Mandos and the computers-should-be-hard argument.

Substance McGravitas said...

Also relinking to this for fun. There are some very smart people who can bend technology to their will but relying on people to be stupid seems like the easier payoff.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I ain't gonna fight this one again, especially since I won so decisively last time.

Besides, I am all out of Sailor Jerry's and am broke because the stupid fucking client can't get his fucking shit together and fucking close on his construction loan so he can fucking pay me for the last fucking six months worth of work. AND the fucking attorneys and banks involved could give a shit about whether any body is waiting for payment; THEY certainly got fucking paid on time, I am sure.

And if I used a 79 dollar USB drive, I would deserve what I got. mike assumes too much in order to be condescending.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I got a 32 MB USB drive from Micro Center for 26.99. Pretty useful for retrieving my gigantic picture folders from the winetop.
~

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

That is G.B., of course.

Giga Bouffant.
~

vacuumslayer said...

Hey, zrm, if you're a shitty mood, could you go take it out on the fuckface who's semi-trolling me at WF?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I think that's the first time I've had a request to be a shithead on the internet.

Mostly I do it without being asked.

vacuumslayer said...

You have a new JAHB!!!

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

How was that?

vacuumslayer said...

Awesome! Yer hired!

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I hope everyone is going to watch Poultrygeist RIGHT NOW.

Smut Clyde said...

Mostly I do it without being asked.
New intern!!

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Interning at Riddled probably pays more than architecture....

vacuumslayer said...

Plus, free Absinthe and horse semen.

Smut Clyde said...

I do not believe we have blogged about absinthe. Yet.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

You know that doesn't mean you don't offer it, Smut. what, you think we don't pay attention?

Hmpf. Anyways, modern absinthe is unadulterated and stuff, not like CLASSIC absinthe, so not as much fun

fish said...

Not even with horse semen?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

fish has been going strange places since he shut down his blog.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Disgusting places.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Tijuana, even.

fish said...

Love the donkey show.

Smut Clyde said...

Hmpf. Anyways, modern absinthe is unadulterated and stuff, not like CLASSIC absinthe, so not as much fun

Memo to self: Start brewing wormwood beer again.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

"again"?

You disappoint.