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Could this be about not being able to warn others that something is going on in your neighborhood or that it’s headed their way?
Over the past week, the Internet and talk radio have been buzzing about an Executive Order quietly signed by President Obama that allegedly authorizes the Department of Homeland Security to get ready to shut down all domestic communication in case of a declared national emergency. Let me repeat: All domestic communication, which includes “New Generation Systems” – a.k.a. the Internet – within the United States.
Just exactly what qualifies as a “national emergency” is not clearly defined. But something tells me we’ll soon find out.
White House Executive Order 13618, signed July 6, 2012, and titled “Assignment of National Security and Emergency Preparedness Communications Functions,” could be used to prevent communication between U.S. citizens, allege some concerned, thus allowing the president to eliminate any and all opposition to his plans. You decide. The complete EO can be read here.
An article that recently appeared in Zero Hedge (“Guest Post: What Is President Obama So Afraid Of?”) connects the dots:
“Taken in conjunction with the NSA’s new Utah spy center (which will collect and archive the complete contents of every email, tweet, Facebook post, Google search, phone call and text message) and the National Defense Authorization Act, it’s clear that the Obama administration is expecting trouble from within.
“And with good reason,” the article continues. “By every possible calculation (except flat-out fraud), the U.S. government is completely insolvent, and its balance sheet is growing worse by the day. The dollar is beginning to be seriously challenged as the global reserve standard, and every effort politicians make to ‘fix’ the economy only makes things worse.
“As a matter of convenience, people are willing to deal with a lot of pain. They’ll suffer through wars, recessions, and all sorts of national unpleasantness. But the moment that rapidly decaying economics and shortages prevent people from being able to put food on the table for their families, they rise up,” the article warns. “Just look at the Arab Spring.
“This is all playing out with nearly perfect historical precision,” the article concludes. “Time and time again throughout history as once great empires accelerated their declines, governments have taken steps to protect their interests against the people.”
Here are more concerns voiced in a discussion that took place last week on GBTV/Real News.
Got your pen handy? It’s time to warn your friends and tell your representatives in Congress to do something about it. Get to them directly through GradeGov.com.
Feds keeping close tabs on us, says NSA whistleblower
“They’re pulling together all the data about virtually every U.S. citizen in the country … and assembling that information,” said NSA whistleblower William Binney during an interview last week conducted by an Internet journalist at a conference in New York City. “So government is accumulating that kind of information about every individual person, and it’s a very dangerous process.”
Binney said some1.6 billion logs have been processed since 2001. Read the story and watch the videotaped interview here. Then call your senator and congressman to, uh, voice your displeasure.
DHS cybersecurity team warns of hack attack
The very busy Department of Homeland Security issued an alert last week warning that a huge software system managing millions of computers and devices around the world is vulnerable to hack attacks.
Software developed by Tridium Niagara Framework enables military, corporate and health-care users, among others, to remotely control a wide array of devices, including video cameras, medical monitors, elevators and other sensitive operations.
The alert notified cybersecurity officials that “Niagara users should immediately prohibit guest users, bolster passwords, cut off direct access to the Internet and take other steps to prevent hackers from exploiting configuration and software flaws.”
The Washington Post explains it in everyday language. The Tridium website alert is a bit more tech-speak. But bottom line, it’s all about password security. Here’s a video that helps explain the vast cyber network and how it is connected.
Yahoo – Oh!
Was your Yahoo account login password among the 450,000-plus posted online by hackers? Mine was. Friends wrote me that they were receiving offers for male enhancement products!
To avoid that in the future, you should use a different password for each of your accounts. Make sure the password is made up of a scramble of numbers and upper and lower case letters. You can also use a free online tool that will store your passwords and use them for you, including KeePass, 1password and LastPass. And let the only “enhancements” be your brilliantly written emails instead.
Here we Go-ogle again
Google’s at it again. Using a special computer code, the Internet giant used “cookies” to fool Apple’s Safari browser in order to monitor iPhone and iPad users.
Google claimed the move was ‘inadvertent” and has removed the code, which violated a previous Google agreement with the FTC to be open about its privacy practices. So now Google has to ante up $22.5 million, a mere drop in the bucket to the billion-dollar enterprise. What’s that expression? “Better to beg forgiveness than ask permission.” Yep. That’s Google.
Bringing down the ‘Net?
What do cyber warfare, space weather, political mandate and cable cutting have in common? All four could bring down the Internet. Here’s how.
Putin puts kibosh on Internet – quashes critics
Vladimir Putin has been president only two months, and he’s already begun cracking down on his Russian critics. Russia’s parliament quickly passed an Internet bill last week that allows the government to block blacklisted or “no list” websites. ISPs and site owners will now be forced to shut down any website on this list.
Could the next step be a crackdown on dissenters? Activists think so, saying this is the latest sign of growing civil freedom repression in Russia.
Fishing for criminal activity
Did you know your Facebook page is being monitored for criminal activity?
The FB social media network and other social platforms are eyeballing users’ chats for criminal activity and tipping off police if they detect suspicious behavior. Specially created canning software looks for words or certain phrases, then alerts FB employees about anything questionable. They then contact the police. Here’s Facebook’s policy on Law Enforcement and third-party matters.
Everything old is new again
A pilot program in New York City is turning obsolete payphone kiosks into WiFi stations. The free service is currently in a trial phase, but if it takes off, it will take off big. It’s the Big Apple’s latest version of the happening “hotspot.”
Bits & Bytes
- A new mobile guide app helps you find your way around the Smithsonian, bringing Google’s indoor map cache up to 10,000 images for Android users.
- This poll shows iPhone users back Obama. While we’re on the topic, iPhone’s coding “language” is the third most popular in world.
- Look for iPhone 5 to be announced in August. Here’s a peek. What might the iPhone of the future look like? Arachnophobiacs might not like this one.
- You’ve got mail! Top Tech sounds of yesteryear!
- WikiLeaks has competition – Paranoia strikes deep.
- See the inside of Twitter’s new nest.