Saturday, November 1, 2014

Walking with pirates

Rum Rum, the bottle of rum. The fiercest pirates of all the Seas are turning in their graves, since the Real Academia de la Lengua Española has decided to turn "hacker" synonymous with "computer pirate" . This theme is now trending topic in the Spanish community of security experts who overwhelmingly reject it. But there was a time, when computer revolution started, that hackers considered an honor to be computer pirates .

It was when hackers, mostly teenagers, had for the most funny game to break copy protections in videogames and programs, and called them pirated software. Then some of those hackers grew and continued devoting to it, this time distributing movies and music. So they called their main vessel The Pirate Bay, the largest database in the world of pirated culture and also the most persecuted by the authorities. Yesterday, one of its founders, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, alias Anakata, was sentenced to 3½ years in prison, but not because of Pirate Bay, but for getting into the computers of a Danish company and stealing data.

Anakata can be considered an elite pirate, confronted with the increasingly pirates, or better call them criminals, that populate the network. Here there is a common example: Recently somebody discovered a serious security flaw in a blogging software called Drupal. The hole allowed criminals to enter inside the computer where the blog is hosted and infect visitors or use it for other sophisticated attacks. As reported in various media, robots programmed by criminals have begun automated attacks against the thousands of sites that have not yet repaired the bug.

Although ... there are pirates also on the other side, as reminds us a curious story of the day: Two California policemen were involved in detaining good looking women to seize their mobile phones and copy photos form their phones, where women appeared in sexy situations, and share them in forums. Sometimes reality is better than any movie. By the way, since we're on weekend, the site Security Art Work proposes a list of novels and films related to computer security, hackers, and yez computer pirates.

May you enjoy these restly days, whether reading, watching movies and, best, no pirating anything.


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