David Kirkpatrick

July 23, 2010

Hacking home routers

Don’t you just love some of the stuff that comes out of the upcoming Black Hat conference? I can understand pointing out issues with web security — particularly at the enterprise level — but announcing a hack to break into home routers in wide use, and here’s the especially bad part, releasing  a tool to automate the hack so the usual gang of fools and script kiddies don’t even have to work at it. I think we all know who/what the real tool is here.

From the link:

An engineer from security firm Seismic claims he will soon release instructions on how to hack millions of wireless routers commonly used in residential Internet connections. The how-to hack instructions are part of what has become an annual chest-beating by speakers at the Black Hat security conference that hype their keynotes with end-of-PC-security-as-we-know-it promises.

Ars Technica reports that the presentation, entitled “How to Hack Millions of Routers” (not mincing any words there, are they?), will be given at Black Hat by Senior Security Engineer for Seismic Craig Heffner. Heffner’s presentation will include a live demonstration on how to “pop a remote root shell on Verizon (VZ) FIOS routers” as well as a tool release that will automate the described attack.

Seismic has tested around 30 routers so far, and has found that approximately half of them are vulnerable to this attack. The list of vulnerable routers includes routers from Linksys, Belkin, ActionTec, ASUS, Thompson, and Dell (DELL).

February 22, 2008

McCain scandal update — brokered GOP convention scenario

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:02 pm

Here’s a Daily Dish post on David Brook’s coverage  of John McCain’s little, er, issue:

Brooks Covers the McCain Beat

22 Feb 2008 03:29 pm

by Reihan

Little-known fact: David Brooks began his career in journalism at Chicago’s City News Bureau, where he pounded the pavement on the crime beat. In today’s column, he unravels the rivalries and wounded egos that threaten to bring down the McCain campaign shoe-leather-style. And he also notes McCain’s Hart-like vulnerability.

At his press conference Thursday, McCain went all-in. He didn’t just say he didn’t remember a meeting about Iseman. He said there was no meeting. If it turns out that there is evidence of an affair and a meeting, then his presidential hopes will be over.If no evidence surfaces, his campaign will go on and it will be clear that there were members of his old inner circle consumed by viciousness and mendaciousness.

Remember when Gary Hart dared the press to find evidence of his, ahem, “Monkey Business”? Well, they did. The bluster and bravado that I like and admire in McCain, and that my lefty friends can’t stand, might indeed be the end of him.

Brooks’s column reminded me, oddly enough, of Sam Anderson’s brilliant investigative feature on The Splasher. It’s awesome.

So if there is fire behind an admittedly pretty feeble smoke trail, would the derailing of the Straight Talk Express lead to a brokered GOP convention? Seems that would allow Saint Fred or Saint Mitt — hell, maybe even Saint Newt — step to the podium and “save” conservatism as is remains today.