Monthly Archives: May 2018

Spoofing Cell Networks with a USB to VGA Adapter

RTL-SDR brought cheap and ubiquitous Software Defined Radio (SDR) to the masses, opening up whole swaths of the RF spectrum which were simply unavailable to the average hacker previously. Because the RTL-SDR supported devices were designed as TV tuners, they had no capability to transmit. For the price they are still an absolutely fantastic deal, and deserve to be in any modern hacker’s toolkit, but sometimes you want to reach out and touch someone.

GSM network broadcast from a VGA adapter

Now you can. At OsmoDevCon [Steve Markgraf] released osmo-fl2k, a tool which allows transmit-only SDR through cheap USB 3.0 to VGA adapters based on the Fresco Logic FL2000 chip. Available through the usual overseas suppliers for as little has $5 USD, these devices can be used unmodified to transmit low-power FM, DAB, DVB-T, GSM, UMTS and GPS signals.

In a demonstration on the project page, one of these USB VGA adapters is used to broadcast a GSM cellular network which is picked up by the adjacent cell phones. Another example shows how it can be used to broadcast FM radio. A GitHub repositoryhas been set up which includes more examples. The signals transmitted from the FL2000 chip are obviously quite weak, but the next step will logically be the hardware modifications necessary to boost transmission to more useful levels.

To say this is a big deal is something of an understatement. For a few bucks, you’ll be able to get a device to spoof cellular networks and GPS signals. This was possible before, of course, but took SDR hardware that was generally outside the budget of the casual experimenter. If you bought a HackRF or an Ettus Research rig, you were probably responsible enough not to get into trouble with it, but that’s not necessarily the case anymore. As exciting as this technology is, we would be wise to approach it with caution. In an increasingly automated world, GPS spoofing can have some pretty bad results.

Source: Spoofing Cell Networks with a USB to VGA Adapter

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The Pentagon Is Making a Ray Gun to Stop Truck Attacks

The van driver who killed 10 Toronto pedestrians on Monday showed that a terror technique that ISISpioneered in Iraq and Syria in 2015 remains terrifyingly effective against unsuspecting urban populations. But the U.S. military is working on a new weapon to stop vehicle-born terrorist threats, one that could help police departments as well.

The Defense Department’s Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program, or JNLWD, is pushing ahead with a new direct energy weapon that uses high-powered microwaves to stop cars in their tracks without damaging the vehicle, its driver, or anyone else.

The jammer works by targeting the car’s engine control unit causing it to reboot over and over, stalling the engine. Like an invisible hand, the microwaves hold the car in place. “Anything that has electronics on it, these high-powered microwaves will affect,” David Law, who leads JNLWD’s technology division, said in March. “As long as the [radio] is on, it holds the vehicle stopped.”

Source: The Pentagon Is Making a Ray Gun to Stop Truck Attacks

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Exorcisms booming as Christian faith declines and internet offers easy access to black magic, priests told

Demand for exorcisms is booming as a result of a decline in Christian faith and the internet providing easy access to black magic, the occult and Satanism, a Vatican conference for exorcist priests was told on Monday.

So many people are asking to be liberated from the malign hold of the Devil that some priests are now delivering prayers of liberation – a first step towards exorcism – over the phone.

“There are priests who carry out exorcisms on their mobile phones. That’s possible thanks to Jesus,” said Cardinal Ernest Simoni, an Albanian who was tortured and imprisoned by the Communist authorities but after his release performed frequent exorcisms.

Source: Exorcisms booming as Christian faith declines and internet offers easy access to black magic, priests told

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University student who filmed flatmates in the shower asks for privacy

A University of Wollongong student who hid a camera inside a sponge in order to film his female flatmates while they showered has requested privacy as his case is dealt with by the courts.

“Please, give me privacy,” Rico Auliaputra said, outside Wollongong Local Court on Thursday.

“I’m so embarrassed.”

'Privacy, please,' says confessed shower peeper

‘Privacy, please,’ says confessed shower peeper

A University of Wollongong student who was convicted of filming a person in a private act without consent has requested privacy as his case goes before court.

Auliaputra, a 25-year-old Indonesian national studying for a degree in internet technology, was convicted of filming a person in a private act without consent, after he failed to front Wollongong Local Court on Tuesday to answer the charge.

Police documents tendered to the court said the three flatmates were at the CBD unit they shared with Auliaputra the night of October 28 last year when one of them noticed a green flashing light coming from a yellow sponge on the floor of the bathroom.

Source: University student who filmed flatmates in the shower asks for privacy

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CIA Has Plans To Switch Human Spies With Artificial Intelligence

The American security agency CIA knows that the future can’t go without artificial intelligence. The agency was all over the news last year because of Wikileaks which published their collection of hacking tools.

CIA wants to deal with foreign spies, not human but AI-powered spies tracking CIA agents deployed overseas. An effective countermeasure would be using technology instead of humans to get the required intel.

At a conference in Florida, CIA’s Science and Technology division deputy director Dawn Meyerriecks talked about their AI developments without going into the details. Meyerriecks told the audience there are around 30 countries that are so good at digital surveillance that they don’t need physical tracking.

Source: CIA Has Plans To Switch Human Spies With Artificial Intelligence

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Mum delivers her own baby after watching YouTube tutorial

A woman who had no idea she was pregnant was forced to deliver her own baby in a hotel room with only YouTube for guidance.

Tia Freeman, 22, had to make a 17-hour stopover in Istanbul as she flew to Germany for a holiday from her home in Nashville, Tennessee – but she picked up more than just a few souvenirs… she returned home with a SON.

Sharing her outrageous real life story on Twitter, she explained how she had had no idea that she was pregnant until she had passed the six month mark, but decided to go ahead with her holiday regardless, assuming the baby would be born after she got home.

However, she went in to labour on the flight out of the US – but wrongly believed her twinges and contractions to be symptoms of food poisoning after eating Salmon as her in-flight meal. 

After arriving at Istanbul airport and being trapped in a “chaotic” customs queue, she realised that in fact her baby was coming – but she was determined not to “give birth on the airport floor”.


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New ordinance in Terre Haute requires permit to dance

A permit to dance? Terre Haute officers say a new city ordinance requiring a permit for dances and dance parties will keep the community safer, WTHIreports. But not everyone agrees.

The Terre Haute City Council passed the ordinance in 2017. Sec. 4-301 of the city code states anyone hosting or allowing a dance party on their property without  permit will be cited. Also, hosts need liability insurance.

Terre Haute Police Sergeant Denzil Lewis tells WTHI the ordinance was created to crack down on violent crimes at parties. He says many of the people throwing the dance parties are former Indiana State University students, and they sometimes charge people to get it. Lewis says they’ve seen a decrease in incidents on the weekends they’ve been out enforcing the dance permit.

“If we see a house that is obviously having a dance party we will approach it; but for the most part, the majority of these have been calls for service, and we’ve responded to them and we’ve issued the citations,” Lewis said.

Source: New ordinance in Terre Haute requires permit to dance

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“Jeremy” is a song based on a true story about a student at Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas


Someone once told me the song Jeremy was about a student at a school I attended for a short while. I attended J.J. Pearce in Richardson, Texas, but went to Richardson High School for a few months. After hearing this several times, I searched the Internet for related stories and confirmed this to be true. To be sure, I checked the Dallas Morning News online archives and confirmed the article there and have reproduced it below.  Since publicizing this information on my site, a number of individuals who knew Jeremy have contacted me and this page has grown.  The more I learn about Jeremy the more I realize just how tragic this really was.  As one kind employee of Richardson High School has told me and discussed during a four hour interview at my home recently, “Jeremy was a good kid with a mountain of problems that he didn’t deserve.”  That interview will be posted here in the relatively near future.  See some details and facts from our meeting toward the bottom of this page.

To follow are the Jeremy Video, the interview with Pearl Jam where they first discuss what Jeremy is about, both of the news articles from the Dallas newspaper the next day, and photos of the school where Jeremy died.  This page continues to evolve.  As more and more people see this page, I am being contacted and given additional information.

Note from SS: At times life will get really rough people, even unbearable, and you just have to realize it is temporary, it too shall pass.  Be strong and be patient.

The Idea for “Jeremy”

“Jeremy” is a song based on a true story about a student at Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas, a suburb of Dallas (photos below). Eddie Vedder saw the newspaper article (that also follows) by which he was inspired to write the song. Eddie states in addition to this there was a student at his school growing up whom also played a part in the song.


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Abu Dhabi government official questioned for appointing baby as ‘happiness executive’

Prosecutors are questioning an official after they gave a baby a job as a ‘happiness executive’ in a government office.

The Public Prosecution Office of the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department (ADJD) on Wednesday said it summoned the individual to “clarify the issue of appointing a less than eight-month old baby boy to a, ‘Happiness Executive’ role”, state news agency Wam reported.

Video footage of the child came to light on social media on Tuesday, in which the child is pictured in a range of activities that were apparently aimed at boosting morale.

Prosecutors said the video indicates that the baby has been appointed in an ‘entertainment’ position and it sees the need to, “investigate the case with the concerned authority”.

It did not state who the official was.

No charges have been brought against them yet.

The video generated a torrent of comments from social media users, many of which were offended rather than entertained.

“This makes my blood boil. Qualified and educated Emirati men and women cant find jobs and you hired a baby! Consider me a child,” one wrote.

Source: Abu Dhabi government official questioned for appointing baby as ‘happiness executive’

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NATO’s terrible cafeteria food is apparently “a violation of the chemical weapons ban”

Diplomats strike me as formal and sophisticated, worldly and impeccable in their tastes. If you’d asked me to imagine the cafeteria at NATO—the fancy-pants intergovernmental military and diplomatic alliance headquartered in Brussels—I would have described a gleaming international food hall full of fresh sushi and organic vegetables. The reality is, apparently, the exact opposite. Politico quotes a number of anonymous NATO employees who describe the cafeteria’s food as, essentially, a crime against humanity.

Source: NATO’s terrible cafeteria food is apparently “a violation of the chemical weapons ban”

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Schools are removing analogue clocks from exam halls as teenagers ‘cannot tell the time’

Schools are removing analogue clocks from examination halls because teenagers are unable to tell the time, a head teachers’ union has said.

Teachers are now installing digital devices after pupils sitting their GCSE and A-level exams complained that they were struggling to read the correct time on an analogue clock.

Malcolm Trobe, deputy general secretary at the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said youngsters have become accustomed to using digital devices.

Source: Schools are removing analogue clocks from exam halls as teenagers ‘cannot tell the time’

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Barn conversions pushing bats into churches, bishop says 

Bats are ruining churches because of barn conversions, the Bishop of Norwich has said.

Speaking in the house of Lords, the Rt Revd Graham James said that bats had moved into churches in his diocese because old barns were being made into homes.

“All over Norfolk there are barns once used by bats which have been turned into beautiful homes for human beings. And their new owners do not want to share their property with them. And so the bats have moved to medieval churches,” he said.

Source: Barn conversions pushing bats into churches, bishop says 

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US soldier gets world’s first penis and scrotum transplant

Dr Andrew Lee and other members of the surgical teamImage copyrightJOHNS HOPKINS MEDICINE
Image captionDr Andrew Lee (second from left) and his team at Johns Hopkins University

A team of US doctors has successfully carried out the world’s first total transplant of a penis and scrotum.

Surgeons at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, performed the operation on a soldier who had been wounded by a bomb in Afghanistan.

They used a penis, scrotum and partial abdominal wall transplanted from a deceased donor.

They say the soldier should be able to regain sexual function, which is impossible with penis reconstructions.

The team of 11 surgeons performed the transplant over 14 hours on 26 March.

It is the first surgery on a combat veteran injured on duty and the first to transplant a complete section of tissue including the scrotum and surrounding abdominal area.

Doctors said the donor testicles were not transplanted, due to ethical considerations.


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Claims by Joy Reid’s Cybersecurity Expert Fall Apart

MSNBC host Joy Reid claims that recently unearthed homophobic articles attributed to her are fakes. And she says a cybersecurity consultant has proof that her old blog has been hacked.

But that consultant, Jonathan Nichols, had trouble producing the promised evidence. And what he did produce failed to withstand scrutiny, according to a Daily Beast analysis. Blog posts that Nichols claimed do not appear on the Internet Archive are, in fact, there. The indicators of hacked posts don’t bear out.

Last year, the AM Joy host apologized for a 2007 blog post in which she had mocked Florida’s then-Republican Gov. Charlie Crist by referring to him as “Miss Charlie” and suggested that while on honeymoon with his wife, he secretly wanted to sleep with men.

Reid apologized on-air, suggesting she had evolved over a decade from those “insensitive, tone-deaf and dumb” remarks.

But Monday, media-news site Mediaite published—using screenshots taken from The Wayback Machine’s cached versions of Reid’s blog—more homophobic blog posts from the late aughts. In them, Reid appeared to crassly mock gay celebrities like Anderson Cooper and Clay Aiken, defend homophobia as “intrinsic” to straight people, declare that she wouldn’t see Brokeback Mountain because of the gay sex scenes, and imply that gay advocacy groups prey upon “impressionable teens.” On Thursday, the Washington Free Beacon followed up by revealing another set of homophobic posts not previously reported by Mediaite.

Source: Claims by Joy Reid’s Cybersecurity Expert Fall Apart

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