Efficacy a Featured Blog at Showcase
the power to produce an effect
Presidential debates can change the course of elections, but George Farah, executive director of Open Debates, has evidence showing that the debates' rules of order have been hijacked by the two main political parties. The result? Moderators can't ask follow-up questions, important issues are never raised, and credible third-party candidates are excluded from the proceedings altogether.
We're going to miss Bill when he's gone.
In the interest of full disclosure, I scored 60% on the quiz.
Don't it always go to show, you don't miss your League of Women Voters Presidential Debate Sponsorship until it's gone.
JPEG exploit toolkit spotted online | The Register: "JPEG exploit toolkit spotted online
By John Leyden
Published Friday 24th September 2004 16:32 GMT
A toolkit designed to exploit a recently-disclosed Microsoft JPEG vulnerability has been released onto the net. The toolkit (screen shot from AV firm F-Secure here) makes it trivially easy for maliciously-minded attackers, however unskilled they might be, to exploit unpatched Windows systems and run malicious code.
The attack mechanism used here takes advantage of a recently discovered flaw in the way Microsoft applications process JPEG image files. Malformed JPEG files are capable of triggering a buffer overflow in a common Windows component (the GDI+ image viewing library), it was revealed last week. This behaviour creates a ready mechanism to inject exploit code into vulnerable systems. Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 make use of vulnerable library by default. Other Windows OSes might be vulnerable, depending on what applications users have installed.
Microsoft, which unsurprisingly rates the vulnerability as critical, released a patch to defend against the flaw on 14 September. To be at risk, users have to open a JPEG file modified to trigger the flaw using either IE or Outlook. They also need to be unpatched. Unfortunately there's plenty of scope for both conditions to be met and the gene pool of potential victims is huge.
The problem is exacerbated by the fact JPEG files are typically viewed 'as a benign and trusted file format... as such it is possible to cause image files to be viewed with minimal user-interaction through several applications including many email clients such as Outlook and Outlook Express,' Security tools vendor ISS notes. 'There is also potential for automatic exploitation in the form of a network-propagating worm.'
Since...Microsoft's update, security firm ScanSafe, which looks for malware in web traffic, has stopped numerous JPEG files identified as containing the exploit.
Users are strongly advised to download and install the latest software patches from Microsoft and to update their anti-virus definitions as soon as possible. If you haven't done it already now would be a very good time. Sysadmins need to include the contents of JPEG files among the types of traffic scanned by network security tools. Several gateway AV scanners, for example, do not inspect image files by default. ®
��TBogg��: "George Bush: The Basement Tapes
One Whiskey, One Bourbon, One Beer:
Just what kind of guy was President Bush during his character-defining early adulthood?
An aimless, inconsiderate, womanizing drunkard - if you believe Rolling Stone's article detailing how the 26-year-old Bush allegedly used his family connections to evade National Guard duties, was lazy and unreliable at his civilian job and boasted to colleagues about the benefits of being the grandson of a powerful United States senator."
Via Rising Hegemon
What would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation? The population of the US is over 11 times that of Iraq, so a lot of statistics would have to be multiplied by that number.
Thus, violence killed 300 Iraqis last week, the equivalent proportionately of 3,300 Americans. What if 3,300 Americans had died in car bombings, grenade and rocket attacks, machine gun spray, and aerial bombardment in the last week? That is a number greater than the deaths on September 11, and if America were Iraq, it would be an ongoing, weekly or monthly toll.
Have you heard of Global Election Management System, or GEMS?
Activists Find More E-Vote Flaws
"You have to know in advance what you want to change," Thompson said, "but it's pretty easy to write a script to find the data that you want to change. If you want Stan Smith to have more votes than he currently has, you write a line of your script that says select everything in the table where candidate equals Stan Smith, and increment the votes. Then you delete the votes from another candidate by the same amount."
Thompson acknowledged that the hack would take an insider with knowledge of the voting system and election procedures and access to GEMS. But this could include technical people working for a county or Diebold employees who sometimes assist technically challenged election officials on election night. It's unlikely that unsavvy election officials or observers would notice or understand the significance of someone writing five lines of code in Notepad.
And we only have ourselves to blame if we let them get away with it.
Your machine may be suffering the effects of a BHO or Browser Helper/Hijack Object which may conceal more troublesome malware as well.
The removal sequence is fairly lengthy but should work for most BHOs:
*** BHOs - Detection & Removal ***
FIRST: BACKUP YOUR REGISTRY & any important data - 'cause you just never know.
SECOND: In WinME and WINXP - TURN OFF SYSTEM RESTORE!
THIRD: Enable viewing all system and hidden files.
1) Obtain HijackThis & CWShredder.
Get the latest CWShredder and yet more info on parasites and hijackers, here or here.
2) Get a registry cleaner. I use EasyCleaner v2.0 or later by Toniarts.
3) If you have not already, download anti-spyware/malware software like AdAware & SpyBot.
4) Boot to Safe Mode.
5) Run Hijack This. If confident, perform the deletions on your own. If not comfortable, post your HJT log to an appropriate forum for help.
6) Run CWShredder. Check for updates before you do. Make sure you have v188.8.131.52 or later before you try to fix anything.
(If CWShredder and Hijack This won't run to completion, download and run CoolWWWSearch.SmartKiller and then go back to step 5.)
7) Repeat steps 5) and 6) until everything is removed.
8) Run anti-spyware if desired (Recommended): AdAware v6 or Adaware Pro SE v. 1.05 and Spybot Search & Destroy 1.3. Make sure you have the latest dat files updated for both programs before scanning anything. Some folks also use Bazooka Spyware Detector,
9) Now run the registry cleaner. I used EasyCleaner v2.0 (Windows Help bug fixed).
That should allow you to set your home page to whatever you want, speed up your machine and generally improve your life and disposition.
If that doesn't work (rare but possible) see discussion here or an entire forum devoted to this topic.
When I'm not doing important stuff like opining on thiser and thater, I'm generally charging people to do the stuff I've just told you how to do for free. As always, if by incompetently following these detailed and highly reliable instructions (or even if you follow them to the letter, in your dreams), your computer or the computer of your friend or loved one melts, blows up real good or transports you into another dimension, I disavow any and all responsibility. In other words, this works, but proceed at your own risk.