2015 archive

merry christmas 2015

santa with laptop

It’s trivia’s birthday again (9 years old today!), so I just have to post to wish my readers (both of you, you know who you are….) a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. Much has happened over the last year or so which has distracted me from blogging (life gets in the way sometimes) …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/12/24/merry-christmas-2015/

knees and other jerks

On sunday, the motherboard intially reported that, in the wake of the Paris atrocities of November 13th, the French Government was proposing to ban Tor and free WiFi. As it turns out, this is not strictly accurate. The report was later corrected – thus: Correction: The initial headline and copy of this article suggested that …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/12/08/knees-and-other-jerks/

cameron meets corbyn

(With thanks to David Malki!)

Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/28/cameron-meets-corbyn/

christmas present

Like most people in the UK at this time of the year I’ve been doing some on-line shopping lately. Consequently I’m waiting for several deliveries. Some delivery companies (DHL are a good example) actually allow you to track your parcels on-line. In order to do this they usually send out text or email messages giving …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/23/christmas-present/

torflow

Map graphic of Tor network traffic around the world

Yesterday, Kenneth Freeman posted a note to the tor-relays list drawing attention to a new resource called TorFlow. TorFlow is a beautiful visualisation of Tor network traffic around the world. It enables you to see where traffic is concentrated (Europe) and where there is almost none (Australasia). Having the data overlaid on a world map …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/10/torflow/

lancashire police fail

This is simply depressing. Today I received a classic phishing attack email – the sort I normally bin without thought. According to virustotal, the attachment, which purported to be an MS Word document called “Invoice 7500005791.doc”, was a copy of W97M/Downloader, a word macro trojan which Symantec says is a downloader for additional malware. So …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/10/29/lancashire-police-fail/

update to privacy policy

As promised in my privacy policy, this post draws attention to the fact that I have amended that policy (very slightly). The amendments refer to the fact that I no longer use Counterize to collect run time statistics. I prefer instead to use Awstats which runs over my log file on a weekly basis. I …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/10/15/update-to-privacy-policy/

update to domain privacy

At the end of last month I noted that I had been receiving multiple emails to each of the proxy addresses listed for my newly registered “private” domains. Intriguingly, whilst I was receiving at least three or four such emails a week before I wrote about it, I have had precisely zero since. Probably coincidence, …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/08/20/update-to-domain-privacy/

why privacy matters

Last month my wife and I shared a holiday with a couple of old friends. We have known this couple since before we got married, indeed, they attended our wedding. We consider them close friends and enjoy their company. One evening in a pub in Yorkshire, we got to discussing privacy, the Snowden revelations, and …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/08/19/why-privacy-matters/

get your porn here

Dear Dave is at it again. Sometimes I worry about our PM’s priorities. Not content with his earlier insistence that UK ISPs must introduce “family friendly (read “porn”) filters”, our man in No 10 now wants to “see age restrictions put into place or these (i.e. “porn”) websites will face being shut down”. El Reg …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/07/30/get-your-porn-here/

domain privacy?

Over the past few months or so I have bought myself a bunch of new domain names (I collect ’em….). On some of those names I have chosen the option of “domain privacy” so that the whois record for the domain in question will show limited information to the world at large. I don’t often …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/07/28/domain-privacy/

why pay twice?

Yesterday’s Independent newspaper reports that HMG has let a contract with five companies to monitor social media such as twitter, facebook, and blogs for commentary on Goverment activity. The report says: “Under the terms of the deal five companies have been approved to keep an eye on Facebook, Twitter and blogs and provide daily reports …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/06/05/why-pay-twice/

de-encrypting trivia

Well, that didn’t last long. When I decided to force SSL as the default connection to trivia I had forgotten that it is syndicated via RSS on sites like planet alug. And of course as Brett Parker helpfully pointed out to me, self-signed certificates don’t always go down too well with RSS readers. He also …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/06/02/de-encrypting-trivia/

encrypting trivia

In my post of 8 May I said it was now time to encrypt much, much more of my everyday activity. One big, and obvious, hole in this policy decision was the fact that the public face of this blog itself has remained unencrypted since I first created it way back in 2006. Back in …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/06/01/encrypting-trivia/

what is wrong with this sentence?

Yesterday the new Government published a press release about the forthcoming first meeting of the new National Security Council (NSC). That meeting was due to discuss the Tory administration’s plans for a new Counter-Extremism Bill. The press release includes the following extraordinary statement which is attributed to the Prime Minister: “For too long, we have …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/05/14/what-is-wrong-with-this-sentence/

back on topic

Theresa May hasn’t wasted any time. The Independent reports today that Ms May (Home Secretary in the coalition administration) has said that the new Tory administration will bring the Draft Communications Data Bill, previously blocked by the Liberal Democrats, back to the House of Commons with the intention of getting it passed into law. As …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/05/08/back-on-topic/