cowboy me, 2.0: jose nazario beauty and the street

Four short links: 10 June 2013

Booz Allen Hamilton, gall bladder cancer, Lailat al Qadr, Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden: the whistleblower behind revelations of NSA surveillance | World ... -- The individual responsible for one of the most significant leaks in US political history is Edward Snowden , a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of the defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Snowden has been working at the National Security Agency for the last four years as an employee of various outside contractors, including Booz Allen and Dell. I want it to be about what the US government is doing." "I know the media likes to personalise political debates, and I know the government will demonise me." "I'm willing to sacrifice all of that because I can't in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy , internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building." He chose the city because "they have a spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent", and because he believed that it was one of the few places in the world that both could and would resist the dictates of the US government. He knows that the biggest and most secretive surveillance organisation in America, the NSA, along with the most powerful government on the planet, is looking for him. The NSA police and other law enforcement officers have twice visited his home in Hawaii and already contacted his girlfriend, though he believes that may have been prompted by his absence from work, and not because of suspicions of any connection to the leaks. Or the Chinese government might whisk him away for questioning, viewing him as a useful source of information.

BBC News - Iain Banks dies of cancer aged 59 -- Fellow Scottish author Ken MacLeod paid tribute to Banks, saying he had "left a large gap in the Scottish literary scene as well as the wider speaking English world".

The Changing and Terrifying Nature of the New Cyber-Warfare | Vanity Fair -- In September 2011, another piece of malware took to the Web: later named Gauss, it stole information and login credentials from banks in Lebanon, an Iranian ally and surrogate. (After one journalist wrote in detail about those connections, Kaspersky accused the journalist of indulging cold-war paranoia and responded that, far from being a spy and Kremlin team member the reality however is much more mundaneIm just a man whos here to save the world. ) But some have wondered if his companys 2012 streak of disclosures was in part politically motivatedall of the spyware Kaspersky made public seems to have advanced U.S. interests and undermined Iranian interests, and many suspect that Iran receives support for its cyber-operations from Russia. But instead, for two months, the hackers who controlled DigiNotars certificates, apparently in Iran, conducted man in the middle attacks on Iranian connections to and from sites including Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Skype, Twitter, andnotablyTor, which provides anonymizing software that many dissidents in Iran have used to elude state surveillance. But the scale and focus of this eventin one month alone, 300,000 people in Iran who connected to Google were vulnerable to hacking via stolen DigiNotar certificatesled many to believe that the Iranian government had engineered the DigiNotar breach itself, using Comodohacker as camouflage. But ever since the Stuxnet attack, Iran has been enhancing its cyber-warfare capability. Public remarks by government leaders in March 2011 indicated that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard had created a cyber unit to coordinate offensive attacks on enemy sites. In March 2012, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei established the High Council of Cyberspace; A top hacker with many well-placed friends in the U.S. government says, I hear Iran pays Russian guys millions to do the attacks, and the guys are living high, flying in prostitutes from all over. Who told him this? We say, Lebanon is the lungs through which Iran breathes. Iran wouldnt breathe these attacks with its own lungs. The posting stated that Muslims must do whatever is necessary to stop spreading this movie All the Muslim youths who are active in the Cyber world will attack to American and Zionist Web bases as much as needed such that they say that they are sorry about that insult.

Edward Snowden in Hong Kong - James Fallows - The Atlantic -- I'm glad we have this information; The surveillance state is giving too many people too much power -- either to destroy its workings, as Snowden has tried to do, or to abuse and extend them. It is part of China -- a country that by the libertarian standards Edward Snowden says he cares about is worse, not better, than the United States. Hong Kong lives a time-limited separate existence, under the "one country, two systems" principle, but in a pinch, it is part of China. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft.

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