Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Patch Tuesday | Cyber-warfare | Vista hacked

This week has been particularly fun for watching misreporting in the news*.

There have been several instances of dire, Chicken Little The Sky is Falling! type headlines.. followed shortly by, “Oh. Wait. The data doesn’t support the conclusion” headlines.

Many, many years ago now, I took some Journalism classes in college. Every instructor I had, had these funny things called “Rules”. The top, Number #1 rule was: “Verify, Verify, Verify”. The second rule was: “There must be three independent and unrelated sources before you can consider anything a ‘fact’.”
We were told that we (future) reporters would have people, called “Editors”, whose sole mission was to double-check our “facts” and verify our “sources”.

We students quickly figured out why these instructors were teachers, and not actual newsmen (and newswomen, ahem)– they weren’t living in reality: in reality, there’s the word “allegedly”, and sentences like “is reported to have said”.

And we young people knew that “Facts” are about as much fun as a date with the Encyclopedia Britannica. Sensation sells. Duh.
[a brief aside: I decided not to become a reporter. I figured if I was meant to chase ambulances and firetrucks, I would do it as a personal-injury lawyer. I didn’t become a lawyer either.]

Contrary to this week’s headlines:
* Russia did not launch all out cyber-warfare against neighboring Georgia. It was, in fact, hackers — on both sides — joining in the fun and using their botnets to shut down  a few websites.
See Kids, not Russian Government, attacking Georgia’s Net.

* Vista’s security features were not rendered useless by hackers, as “announced at BlackHat” (This one caused quite a stir!) In fact.. well, read what one of the “hackers” has to say:
See Alarmed about Vista security? Black Hat researcher Alexander Sotirov speaks out.

* And finally (for today), this Month’s “patch Tuesday” did not cause “widespread disruption”. At least.. here at T4E Headquarters it didn’t. Unless you call having to reboot “to complete installation” some kind of disaster.
Yes, there were more Updates than usual, and more of them were marked “Important”.. but that is actually a “good” thing– those Updates close holes.
But if you DID experience trouble (or, ever do) after installing an Update, click the link below and scroll down to the bottom answer.
See IE’s Menu bar, Taskbar icons, and bad Updates*

*(more accurately, “infotainment”.)

Today’s free link: is in the link directly above.

Survey: I am a bit curious as to how Tech–for Everyone readers are feeling about the Olympic Games being held in China, and so I’ve created a very brief (one question) survey.
Click Here to take survey.  (I will post the results Friday.)

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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August 13, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, cyber crime, News, tech | , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments