In this long article on the 2005 assassination of Rafik Hariri in Beirut, there’s a detailed section on what the investigators were able to learn from the cell phone metadata: At Eid’s request, a judge ordered Lebanon’s two cellphone companies, Alfa and MTC Touch, to produce records of calls and text messages in Lebanon in the four months before the bombing. Eid then studied the records in secret for months. He focused on the phone records of Hariri and his entourage, looking at whom they called, where they went, whom they met and when
Tagged: bruce schneier
New research paper: ” New methods for examining expertise in burglars in natural and simulated environments: preliminary findings “: Expertise literature in mainstream cognitive psychology is rarely applied to criminal behaviour. Yet, if closely scrutinised, examples of the characteristics of expertise can be identified in many studies examining the cognitive processes of offenders, especially regarding residential burglary. We evaluated two new methodologies that might improve our understanding of cognitive processing in offenders through empirically observing offending behaviour and decision-making in a free-responding environment
Stingray is the code name for an IMSI-catcher, which is basically a fake cell phone tower sold by Harris Corporation to various law enforcement agencies. (It’s actually just one of a series of devices with fish names — Amberjack is another — but it’s the name used in the media.) What is basically does is trick nearby cell phones into connecting to it. Once that happens, the IMSI-catcher can collect identification and location information of the phones and, in some cases, eavesdrop on phone conversations, text messages, and web browsing.
Interesting : While most female squid and octopuses have just one reproductive cycle before they die, vampire squid go through dozens of egg-making cycles in their lifetimes, scientists have found. As usual, you can also use this squid post to talk about the security stories in the news that I haven’t covered
From my book Data and Goliath : …when I was working with the Guardian on the Snowden documents, the one top-secret program the NSA desperately did not want us to expose was QUANTUM . This is the NSA’s program for what is called packet injection — basically, a technology that allows the agency to hack into computers. Turns out, though, that the NSA was not alone in its use of this technology.
Wow : The weak passwords — which are hard-coded and can’t be changed — were only one item on a long list of critical defects uncovered by the review. The Wi-Fi network the machines use is encrypted with wired equivalent privacy , an algorithm so weak that it takes as little as 10 minutes for attackers to break a network’s encryption key. The shortcomings of WEP have been so well-known that it was banished in 2004 by the IEEE , the world’s largest association of technical professionals