Pro-Tibet Facebook Group Hacked!!!

8 01 2009

A NY/DC based Pro-Tibet organization, “Students for a Free Tibet” had their Facebook group hacked as of last summer. I was originally informed of this by colleagues from NY back in August but the details were vague. Supposedly, it used to be an open group meaning anyone could join but now you have to get pre-approved. Got some screenshots of the group pages from a few of my contacts to give you an idea of what’s happening there.

Talk about a complete roundabout. Funny that just like Tibet, this group has been blocked from outsiders and set under “martial law” or whatever that means. At least they’re not shooting the members who leave the group … or I hope so.

I also found an interesting pattern against Tibet advocates. An article from March 2008 stated that there many email addresses belonging to those supportive of the Tibetan cause had been targeted numerous times with keyloggers (software designed to record keyboard strokes and transmit to the hacker) and trojans from fake email addresses and through deceiving pro-Tibet textual content.

Another article traced the emails and came with unsurprising results (hint: IP source was pinpointed to Beijing). The article also states that similar treatment has been dished out to Uygurs and Falun Gong members. Gee. I wonder what kind of person would do such a thing.

Along with the malware trojan distribution to Tibet sympathizers, even websites are being defaced. An expert chimed in – “The resurging trend of individual cyber-attacks, or at least based on the accusations from Western governments, is largely carried out by a new group or new generation of youngsters, who view the CPC government as too weak and too soft toward foreign pressure or insults, and take justice in their own hands.

On a different note, a pro-Israel group decided to take matters into their own hands after Facebook failed to take action against a hate group listed on the popular social networking site. “Israel is not a country! Delist it from Facebook as a country” remained on Facebook despite thousands of complaints from all around the world. The Jewish Internet Defense Force had no choice but to hack the group and take it down.

Unlike the JIDF case, the “Students for a Free Tibet” peace group was hacked by people supporting oppression and violence. There are rumors that one of the members is a white supremacist and found an ally in China’s tyranny against the peaceful Tibetans.

The names of the hackers of the “Students for a Free Tibet” Facebook group shown on the image to the left. Motives unknown. Religious fanatics? Muslims? Christians? Right-wing neo-Nazis? Al-Qaida? Chinese spies?

I’ve received notes that at least one person in the admin group is a non-entity user essentially a fake user controlled by someone else. His profile has since been set to “private.”

Regardless of whoever they be, here’s to hoping these clowns come to their senses and stop supporting a Communist/Totalitarian regime. Otherwise, they should just pack up their bags and move to friendly Beijing.

A message to Facebook administrators and users:

When they came for the gypsies, I did not speak, for I am not a gypsy.

When they came for the Jews, I did not speak, because I wasn’t a Jew.

When they came for the Catholics, I did not speak, for I am not a Catholic.

When they came for me, there was no one left to speak.





Get taxed to drive?

4 01 2009

I know it’s been a while since I last posted and this post has very little to do with tech *cough-GPS-cough* but here’s an article from Autoblog that has got my blood boiling:

Oregon ran a pilot program in 2006 and 2007 that fitted 300 cars with GPS receivers, which kept track of the cars’ mileage. The receivers also kept records of when the cars were on the road, noting whether they traveled during rush hour or not. When the drivers went to several specially-equipped gas stations, they paid a mileage tax based on how far they had driven and when they drove, rush hour being more expensive than the wee hours.

Taxing mileage — as opposed to trying to raise fuel taxes — is an idea that’s not only raising eyebrows, it’s also raising interest. Seven other states are reported to be interested in finding a publicly-palatable way to tax mileage. A panel in North Carolina even recommended that drivers be charged a quarter-cent-per-mile for their year’s driving. In such a scenario, after 15,000 miles you’d owe the state $37.50.

GPS? The hell were they thinking? I understand states are losing revenues they normally would been counting on from gas tax but going the extreme route of charging by the distance traveled is a bit too much on the big brother side. When gas prices were this low 3 years ago, how were the states making money then? If people drove less, it would mean less stress on the roads which would also mean that there would be less maintenance required. Sleazy politicians always trying to find ways to tax the citizens to bring out short-term solutions for their own work performance shortcomings.

At this rate, small towns will be affected even more so. A lot of people commute to and from work from small towns or suburbs which would lead to some of them moving into the already crowded cities to avoid the “mile tax” or “toll booths”. I hate you Lou Dobbs because all you’ve been saying the past 5 or 6 years of your CNN existence has been about “heartland” and “illegal immigration” but now it’s about time you use your clout to stuff your big head into the courtrooms about those governments and do something good for once.





A big FU to tailgaters!

6 11 2008

You know how when you’re minding your own business and driving about town, there’s always the one idiot cruising around with reckless abandon? They drive with inches separating them from the car in front and then they scamper off somewhere – usually to smoke with buddies over at by shady run-down apartments or going out to fancy dinners at McDonald’s. Earlier this evening, an asswipe was tucked in behind my car for roughly 10 minutes on the highway with one headlight on high-beam blinding me in one eye and his bumper close enough to compete with Kyle Busch in NASCAR.

So when I got the chance, I pull over to the right lane to let the ass-rider room to go. He zooms off only to get stuck in traffic ahead later. Lucky for me, I found plenty of room on the far left lane and passed him. Some red-neck (possibly hippie) looking dude with long hair glaring at me as I left him behind.

Thought it was over. Not quite for the dude cuz apparently, he was in a battle zone and had to come on top. He raced by at the opportunity hurling obscenities as he blew past a slowing traffic. At times like this, I get distressing thoughts of pointing objects known as guns at said persons.

So in ode to the phantom tailpipe sniffer from tonight, I declare a massive “F-U” to all the habitual tailgaters in this community.





Have you been Rick Rolled?

1 11 2008

I’d forgotten all about Rick Astley and his 1987 hit “Never Gonna Give You Up” until they started playing that song after ever other track at “First Ave” club in Minneapolis last night for the Halloween party special.

Thought it was strange that his song was getting inserted between the different techno tracks like a pitbull among hockey moms. Some of the people I was with had no clue as to who the singer was and then Rick Astley himself sprang up on the stage bopping around with a youthful demeanor akin to his music videos. The crowd went wild. All of a sudden, fond memories of “rickrolling” flooded back to me.

Alright enough of that sentimental crap. Here‘s the link if you want to know about rickroll and have a Happy Halloween Weekend!!! Also, remember to pass on your knowledge about rickrolling to your uninformed peers and after they’ve seen the stuff, annouce to them – “You just got rickrolled!”

UPDATE: I just found a Rick Astley video on this cool website. It’s SFW (Safe For Work) unless there’s something badly wrong with you.





Republican National Conference in St Paul, Minnesota

3 09 2008

The corrupt politicians and their fake-smiling cronies are in town across the river in St Paul, Minnesota. So are a nasty bunch of anarchists and the usual assortment of hippie peace lovers. On tv, Rudy Guiliani appeared and started making small talk getting the crowd hyped up averaging around 3-5 words per sentence. The crowd cheered. More 3-5 word simple sentences with “9-11” thrown in randomly. The crowd cheered again.  The pattern continued and Rudy said “USA” with a swing to get the crowd going “USA USA USA” like sheep following the movement of a mindless herd. Wish there was someone out there asking Rudy about how he refused to help out the FDNY and NYPD who were volunteering out there during 9-11 and now suffering from various respiratory diseases.

We’re all getting used to Rudy’s stories of how he fought the terrorists during 9-11 but then he came out making fun of Barack Obama’s efforts to the streets of Chicago. Seriously. Rudy? You must be going senile. And as expected, he went on to praise McCain through out the years but failed to bring out 2000 when almost every Republican out there painted him as an unpatriotic American. Didn’t matter. The crowd cheered. Something about the honorable Joe Biden (Democratic vice-presidential nominee) flip-flopping. The crowd cheered around his feet.

Then the newly nominated VP to John “I was shot down in Vietnam” McCain showed up. Sarah Palin began the speech with family values and growing up in a small town in Alaska with her “Eskimo” husband who strangely enough looked white and very un-Eskimo. I bet he was discriminated quite a bit because he was an “Eskimo.” Oh puhleez. Don’t yell out saying Obama’s pulling the race card when you’re doing it yourself, only in your case, it doesn’t work at all.

Along the way, she talked about her activities in the PTA and being a mayor of a town of a few thousand. And do note that she said it was a “tough” job unlike serving on the streets of South Chicago. If that’s tough, I’d like to know what her understanding of the role of the VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA means to her. Then something about how she liked to drive in her car. WTF does this have anything to do with being qualified for the position? Then some lies about tax breaks and how Obama would raise taxes. Lies. More lies. Some history on her efforts which she lied about. If she was a murderer, the crowd could care less because this is the crowd that refuses to look at facts. The crowd cheered.

Like “9-11 Rudy”, wife of Eskimo and the Governor of the populous State of Alaska, Sarah Palin talked about all the torture” that John McCain had to endure in Vietnam. Only, I got 2 problems with that:

  1. Vietnam vets do not like to talk about what they did and saw there. They’re not willing to relive those memories. So why is Palin and Rudy going on and on about John McCain being a POW there?
  2. John McCain was NOT tortured. According to the US Government and our prez whom some call “Dubya” or “the original pothead”, worse acts were carried out to the fine residents of Guantanomo Bay and it was deemed normal treatment.

About John McCain, and please I do not have anything against someone who actually went there along with the likes of Democrat John Kerry (who was bashed by Repuglicans for not being a true veteran), although I respect his service, getting shot down isn’t something to be proud of. He is still an American hero but I severely doubt he is the right person for the job. And why are the Repuglicans now embracing him when they trampled down on him back in 2000?

Since she had nothing else to say about her experience and had exhausted her vocabulary of emotional keywords, she went on with some negative jabs on Obama. The crowd cheered. Sarah Palin mocking Barack Obama? Someone who’s had it easy all her life making fun of a social worker? Very classy indeed. Literally.

Republican speeches are always very interesting because of their over-use of keywords and suggestive terms and the blatant lies tossed callously in sentences filled with emotional moments. You can be Emperor Palpitine or Darth Vader and still come out after the speech looking like good ol’ Ben Kenobi. In short, all words and no substance. But be warned. If you’re not careful, you can get swept in with their lies just like how Anakin Skywalker turned to the dark side and became Darth Vader. We know Palpatine and Darth Vader are “evil” because they already look like villains and can’t afford the luxury to smile and make you comfortable unlike the Repuglicans you see on tv.

The following are some of the most popular keywords in a typical Republican speech: God, good, evil, victory, America, Americans, bless, values, faith, terrorist, protection, death tax. Nauseatingly childlike and corny but certainly very definitive and divisive words for the simple-minded. You’re either with us, or against us. Sounds familiar? You know what, the American public has had enough and can see through their lies and know that they’re going to get 4 more years of the same terrible 8 years we’ve gone through. If you want to take advantage of unsuspecting people, go do that elsewhere. My word of advice to republicans is to “Pack up your lies in your suitcases and get out of our country!”





Macbook + Free iPod Touch v New Macbook

28 08 2008

The Beijing Olympics are over which is a sad thing because I was just starting to get used to finding open tennis courts to play in the afternoons and now the Chinese kids are back occupying every known tennis court in Minneapolis and St Paul instead of their television sets.

To a more serious note, before the Olympics even began, the Russian Federation had amassed troops and tanks near the border of South Ossetia and provided arms to the regional separatists in South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Then Georgia responded by sending their troops to take control of the region and all of a sudden, things got out of hand.

There’s plenty of finger pointing as to who pulled the trigger first but to be frank, why are there people who want to take land and break away from an already tiny peaceful nation like Georgia? Economically, socially, and politically, it doesn’t make much sense at all. Now that Russia’s finally able to reclaim it’s superpower status after nearly 2 decades of economic assistance from the western nations, it decides to create more violence. Putin and his obvious human puppet have already declared that they are ready to absorb South Ossetia back into the Russian Federation. Yet the separatists in that region want to tear up this one tiny nation to claim independence only to be taken hostage by Russia in the not too distant future. Why are some people so blind?

Taking a gander at the enormous size of Russia, a question about their hostile actions and recent political ambitions forms. Russia is the largest nation in the world but why do they want to further expand their borders especially when their entire population count is so little? There’s something very distressing about this whole Russian deal and their war-mongering. To add to that, there were reports of kids in Russia coordinating DOS (or DDOS) attacks to bring down (the Georgian) government websites as a way to display their patriotism. Considering the fact that they have stockpiles of nuclear weapons, large quantities of oil, and a dictator style rule, it’s about time we drop Iran from the axis of evil and promote Putin’s Russia to the list. Iran can wait. It’s getting to that time where we refocus our military and bring freedom and democracy back to the Russians.

Oh and what does this have to do with Apple products? Absolutely nothing which is exactly what the world is doing right now. Hoping to see more political action against this evil empire.





Two Minutes to Midnight for Servers

21 05 2008

PDOS (Phlashing/Permanent Denial of Service) attacks have now entered the mainstream world. An article on Hackaday reveals this accidental discovery and the same stuff is also reported on Engadget. Although this isn’t anything new and it’s hard to execute remotely, it’s completely possible due to the pervasive nature of technology in our lives today. A standard DDoS (Denial of Service) attack shuts down websites or slows down your computer’s processes or network capabilities. The means are usually achieved by overflooding key components (CPU/RAM/etc) with large swaths of packets (data). They can also trigger recursive functions on older systems to cause a stack overflow without having to eat up bandwidth space on the network.

The vulnerability: Many devices nowadays allow for their firmwares to be updated from your couches. You no longer have to mail it to a service center or worse, buy an entirely new product for an updated software. Your Palm Pilots, phones (smart phones like Windows Mobile and Symbian devices), routers, etc are some more common instances. This procedure is known as “flashing” and is risky because if the update isn’t done right or if there is a hiccup on the network, it’s going to “brick” your device.

What do you mean by “brick”: When your electronic device is only as useful as a brick.

Why do you need to run firmware updates: Firmware updates are constantly provided by manufacturers to enhance your product’s usability and functions. They could affect anything from the user-interface to the support of additional hardware, new added functions, or provide greater efficiency and addressing bugs. Certain software might only work if you your firmware is at or greater than a certain level.

What PDOS does: Writes a corrupt firmware to complete the transformation of your device into the afore mentioned construction product. Owners of convergence devices (smart phones) need to remember to completely back up their data before flashing as we all know the risks involved.

How to prevent it: You would need to disable remote firmware updates. That option should be listed somewhere in the device’s settings section and if it’s not there, look up in the manuals because it should be. Other ways are to secure your routers and the use of strong passwords.