Surprise, surprise, surprise! The Chinese are hacking our satellites!

Well, somebody did. Somebody in China. As Computerworld states:

The report does not directly accuse the Chinese government or its military of being behind the attacks. But it does note that the disruptions are consistent with Chinese military strategies that advocate the disabling of enemy space systems and ground-based satellite control systems, Bloomberg said.

China’s stated strategy in a conflict is to “compromise, disrupt, deny, degrade, deceive or destroy” U.S. space and computer systems, the report says, according to Bloomberg.
http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9221257/Chinese_hackers_may_have_attacked_U.S._satellites

See the Bloomberg Businessweek article at http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-10-27/chinese-military-suspected-in-hacker-attacks-on-u-s-satellites.html. Of course, the Chinese government is shocked, shocked that anyone would think it was their doing:

Chinese officials long have denied any role in computer attacks.

The commission has “been collecting unproved stories to serve its purpose of vilifying China’s international image over the years,” said Wang Baodong, a spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Washington, in a statement. China “never does anything that endangers other countries’ security interests.”

I am reminded of what a Chinese friend told me about doing business with Chinese: it doesn’t matter if a product kills someone, because those people aren’t Chinese. In fact I think of this any time anyone of any nationality feels their nation is exempt from morality because they’re *special*.

I’ve also read that the Koran specifically says you can lie to your enemy, but I haven’t read the Koran. Even the mere suspicion (the subtraction of trust) this brings devalues the credit of anything said in negotiations with Islamists. I’m afraid I’m thinking the same thing of Chinese leaders. Especially when they reassure me China “never does anything that endangers other countries’ security interests.” Uh-huh.

Now comes Duqu, Son of Stuxnet

Don’t let me strain myself saying I told you so.

Cyber-warfare is here, and it’s just getting warmed up. Somebody who had to have access to Stuxnet source code has produced a new variant appearing “in the wild:” Duqu, malware aimed at industrial control systems that can both spy and destroy equipment. What we are seeing is the rise of a new battle, on a new battlefield. And how will it manifest?

At the least, in the continuing theft of intellectual property. At the worst, in the midnight mid-winter shutdown of America’s power grid. And if you just can’t imagine that, remember that your own intellectual limitations have no effect on reality. We couldn’t imagine 9-11 either.

See this article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/19/technology/stuxnet-computer-worms-creators-may-be-active-again.html

What is the exact difference between a ‘terminal’, a ‘shell’, a ‘tty’ and a ‘console’?

So here’s an interesting question, and Linux-news.org provides an excellent article that answers it:

http://linux-news.org/index.php/2011/10/19/what-is-the-exact-difference-between-a-terminal-a-shell-a-tty-and-a-console/

In unix terminology, the short answer is that

  • terminal = tty = text input/output environment
  • console = physical terminal
  • shell = command line interpreter

Have the Chinese put “secret chips” in our military planes?

Next up: Are the Chinese sneaking secret controller chips into products bound for our military aircraft? The Times of India reports this disturbing possibility at http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2009-04-17/us/28040752_1_chinese-spies-chinese-cyber-networks.

Listing out some of the examples of Chinese cyber spy penetration, [a US official] said: “We’re also seeing counterfeit routers and chips, and some of those chips have made their way into US military fighter aircraft.. You don’t sneak counterfeit chips into another nation’s aircraft to steal data. When it’s done intentionally, it’s done to degrade systems, or to have the ability to do so at a time of one’s choosing.”

This is a tactic straight out of Battlestar Galactica: disable the enemy fighters at the most critical moments, with technology you’ve sneaked in. But it’s real, it’s plausible, and it’s now.

We have outsourced our manufacturing to China, and they’ve returned the favor by hacking our networks and stealing our intellectual property. Is your organization, for instance, using Huawei routers instead of Cisco? Cisco is in real trouble, and if it dies, we may not even have a choice in enterprise-grade router equipment – that doesn’t spy on you, steal from you, or cripple you in a pinch. This is spooky, and it’s not science fiction: it’s here and now.

Geeks 2 Go

Greetings and salutations after a couple of very killer weeks. I’m catching up with a handful of valuable tips and leads, the first of which is the topic of this post.

If you’ve dealt with a truly malevolent malware infection, you’ve likely used Malware Bytes Anti-Malware, and relied on community analysis and directions to free your PC. One of the nicest communities you can join and utilize is Geeks 2 Go, where helpful people will talk to you personally and coach you through the process of scrubbing your computer. Ever-helpful Herbbie points us toward a single example, which is quite helpful in understanding the process. And, a he notes:

Any more, I check with these guys before I run SW installs just to see if they have had any problems.

http://www.geekstogo.com/forum/topic/240892-slow-pcinternet-connection-after-downloading-veoh-solved/

In any case, some of these supposedly free informational videos and what not WEB sites have been reported as supporting malicious sw. I just wonder what is this internet coming to? I’m just about ready to go back to the old “Compuserve” download days. The worst you could get was the “Stoned” virus back then.

Hmm, sounds like a virus spread at the (un)Occupy Albuquerque camp….