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Goodbye G+!

As I prepare to help shut down public G+ tomorrow, I realize how much I rely on it for long form postings and how much history there is.  I'm frequently on twitter these days, so I'm putting my G+ shutdown playlist there:

https://twitter.com/jpanzer/status/1112831788659798017

I'll likely move back here for long form posts where Twitter is less than optimal.  In that spirit, here's my final goodbye on G+ (which will disappear like tears in the rain tomorrow):

Goodbye, G+!  I've worked, off and on, building and maintaining G+ for mumble years now.  I'm currently working feverishly on winding down the public G+ product and bringing things in for a landing.
All kinds of feels for this.  Even now, with people leaving, the feed I have here is amazingly good and the social network isn't replicated anywhere else.  Thank you all for using my[1] code.  Thanks for being here.
[1] I had a small part, give all credit to the many talented engineers who have poured their ski…
Recent posts

This kind of reaction from a Secretary of State is garbage

This kind of reaction from a Secretary of State in charge of elections is absolutely incorrect, wrong, and deeply disturbing:

'Democrats are launching a manufactured crisis,” Kemp spokeswoman Candice Broce said. “They would love nothing more than for us to flout Georgia law and use paper ballots so they can challenge the results when they lose, but we will not cater to such childish antics.”'

(http://www.myajc.com/news/state--regional-govt--politics/georgia-democratic-leader-demands-details-voter-data-breach/syAe6Hw5TGKAqfohOqEItM/)

Voter verifiable paper audit trails ("paper ballots") are the consensus recommendation of ALL security experts who have looked at this issue, for the past decade or more:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voter-verified_paper_audit_trail#cite_note-5

This is NOT a partisan issue. Kemp can legitimately push back on technical critiques of his state's systems, but to pretend that paper ballots are less secure than the systems Georgia is using (…

My faxed letter to both my Senators this morning

My faxed letter to both my Senators this morning.

Senators Grassley and Graham, this morning, engaged in an obvious act of witness intimidation. They leaked a letter to the Justice Department referring criminal prosecution against Mr. Steele for alleged but unspecified false statements to, apparently, the FBI.

This is on the heels of Senator Grassley refusing to release the testimony of Fusion GPS, refusing to allow the public to evaluate the claims of Simpson vs. selective and apparently inaccurate leaks of said information from the Republican members of the committee.

This is outrageous.

It is unacceptable. It is un-American. These Senators are trying to achieve in then court of public opinion what they have no chance of doing in a real court. They are themselves engaging in witness intimidation & obstruction of justice.

I call on you to denounce this desperate and illegal act by your colleagues and to introduce a motion to censure these two sitting Senators who have demeaned th…

What exactly hosts the mail on ijkfamily.com?

So what exactly hosts the mail on ijkfamily.com?

To sum up: Right now, it appears to be just the Trump organization email servers, which does not inspire confidence in their security.

Best as I can tell, as of 8pm Pacific time, it appears that it's hosted by the same servers running Trump org email, possibly hosted by "BBH Solutions" Here's what I did:

1) dig ijkfamily.com MX
yields:
;; ANSWER SECTION:
ijkfamily.com. 3055 IN MX 0 ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com.
ijkfamily.com. 3055 IN MX 0 ijkpph02.ijkfamily.com.

2) dig ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com
yields:
ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com. 3600 IN A 144.121.114.12

3) OK, let's try to telnet to port 25 and see what happens:

The problem with creation date metadata in PDF documents

Last night Rachel Maddow talked about an apparently fake NSA document "leaked" to her organization.  There's a lot of info there, I suggest you listen to the whole thing:

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/maddow-to-news-orgs-heads-up-for-hoaxes-985491523709

There's a lot to unpack there but it looks like somebody tried to fool MSNBC into running with a fake accusation based on faked NSA documents, apparently based on cloning the document the Intercept published back on 6/5/2017, which to all appearances was itself a real NSA document in PDF form.

I think the main thrust of this story is chilling and really important to get straight -- some person or persons unknown is sending forged PDFs to news organization(s), apparently trying to get them to run stories based on forged documents.  And I completely agree with Maddow that she was right to send up a "signal flare" to all the news organizations to look out for forgeries.  Really, really, really import…

Electronic pollbooks are an attractive attack vector on elections

See http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/06/14/will-the-georgia-special-election-get-hacked-215255

This appears to be a very easy and effective attack on election systems that does not even involve trying to flip votes.

"The center also distributes the voter registration list to counties for use on their ExpressPoll pollbooks; if attackers were to delete voter names from the database stored on the center’s server or alter the precinct where voters are assigned, they could create chaos on Election Day and possibly prevent voters from casting ballots. This is not an idle concern: During the presidential election last year, some voters in Georgia’s Fulton County complained that they arrived to polls and were told they were at the wrong precinct. When they went to the precinct where they were redirected, they were told to return to the original precinct. The problem was apparently a glitch in the ExpressPoll software."

-- http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/06/14/w…

"We will give him a family and he will be our brother"

Remember this?

"Dear President Obama,
Remember the boy who was picked up by the ambulance in Syria? Can you please go get him and bring him to [my home]? Park in the driveway or on the street and we will be waiting for you guys with flags, flowers, and balloons. We will give him a family and he will be our brother..."

(At this point, I cannot read this caption without tears coming to my eyes.)

(Ref: https://www.theatlantic.com/news/archive/2016/09/six-year-olds-letter/501203/)


[Originally published Feb 3, 2017 at https://plus.google.com/115608553892438743738/posts/fapk4NdA9Re]