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Showing posts from July, 2017

Spam: Fighting the Machine

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Spam is defined as "a canned meat product made mainly from ham."
Hm. Did you come here to read about ham?
Spam is also defined as "irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the Internet to a large number of recipients." That’s probably the definition we should discuss.
While spam is usually delivered via the Internet, it can also be distributed via traditional phone systems and cellular networks in the form of texts and phone calls.
Generally, spam refers to unsolicited: EmailSMS messages (texts)Social media messagesPhone calls How do “they” get to me? Several avenues are available for acquiring your contact information.
You gave them the information directly.It is freely available on your social media profile.It was leaked in a breach.It was voluntarily shared by a 3rd party that you may or may not have authorized to sell/share your information. But who are "they"? Is it an individual person trolling me? Most likely not. It’s usually one of two situati…

Passwords - Complexity < Length

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I'm revisiting the topic of password security today because it's essential to understand why passwords exist and how having a weak password can bring a world of pain.

Many services that you have signed up for have password complexity requirements. Something to the effect of:

At least 8 characters1 Uppercase1 Lowercase1 Numeric1 Symbol
Why the complexity? In short, the service is following a password "standard" by not allowing you to create an utterly useless password. However many services aren't doing very complex checks to see if your password is actually secure. Guess what password meets the above requirements: "Password123!" While a computer can generate words very very quickly (we're talking in the order of millions of words per second), a computer with no knowledge of the English language could theoretically take somewhere around 34 thousand years to crack that password.
But wait a minute, theoretically - is that what happens in the real world…