Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Mid-Week Post

The ice cream centre of the work week.

South Korea is walloped by a cyber-attack:

Major banks and TV broadcasters suffered massive computer network failures on Wednesday afternoon. It is unclear who was behind the attack.

The computer networks of broadcasters KBS, MBC and YTN simultaneously failed at around 2:15 p.m. Computers suddenly shut down or froze and could not be rebooted until late afternoon.

Shinhan Bank’s computer network suffered the same fate. Computers at headquarters and all branches failed or had files deleted automatically, while operations ranging from banking and ATMs to online transactions ground to a halt.

Shinhan managed to restore the network about two hours later.

Jeju Bank, Nonghyup, NH Life Insurance and NH Fire also suffered massive network failures until late afternoon. No damage was reported in government or military computer networks.

The Korea Communications Commission said a malicious code was spread through servers in companies that automatically update PC vaccine programs. Cyber security experts said hackers opted to use what is known as an "Advanced Persistent Threat" method to knock down the networks -- a more sophisticated way of bringing down entire computer systems compared to the so-called distributed denial of service attacks South Korea suffered previously, which simply overload the systems.

The government and military here are focusing on the fact that the cyber attacks came just five days after North Korea threatened revenge for two days of hacking attacks apparently suffered by the state-run Rodong Sinmun daily and Korean Central Television. 

I think one has a pretty good idea who did this and how completely frakked South Korea, the most wired country in the world, can be if it ever happens again. Get your EMPs ready and mark Beijing and Pyongyang on the map. Also, stop letting China monopolise the only real industry- computer technology- you have.

Related: the Canadian government cuts off direct aid to China. Let's stop trading with them.

Syria is accusing rebels against the Assad government of using chemical weapons:

Syria's government on Tuesday accused rebel forces of using chemical weapons, with state media saying "terrorists" had fired "rockets containing chemical materials" in Aleppo province, killing 15 people.
"Terrorists fired rockets containing chemical materials on Khan al-Assal in Aleppo province, and preliminary information suggests 15 people were killed, mostly civilians," the state news agency SANA and Syrian state television said.

The accusation is the first such claim by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad against rebel forces, though the international community has warned the regime against deploying its own stocks of chemical weapons.

There are also concerns that the weapons could fall into the hands of militants, with the United States and Israel particularly concerned about the fate of the arms if the regime loses control over them.

The difference between Stephen Harper and you, Justin Sparklestar, is that the former can at least say he has accomplished something:

On a near-empty Porter Airlines flight from Halifax to Ottawa Tuesday evening, Trudeau was sent a note from a fellow passenger asking: “Can you really beat Harper?”

“Just watch me,” Trudeau wrote back, invoking Pierre Trudeau’s famous phrase during the 1970 October Crisis. 

Michael Kydd of Nova Scotia sent the note, later saying on Twitter that “I now have a great story for my children!”

It didn’t take long for the eye-rolling to begin in Conservative circles, and Harper’s spokesperson issued a cheeky retort of his own using the words of former prime minister Trudeau. 

Andrew MacDougall posted his own note on Twitter that asked: “What do you think of Justin Trudeau’s ‘Just watch me’ note?”

“Fuddle duddle,” was MacDougall’s response, invoking Pierre Trudeau’s greatest addition to the Canadian lexicon.

Democratic senators vote to bar the public from White House tours:

While President Obama’s administration has suggested that the Secret Service is to blame for the closure of White House tours, the onus now falls on the Democrat-controlled Senate. On Wednesday, Democrats rejected a Republican attempt to reopen the White House tours in a straight party-line vote. 54 Democrats voted against reopening the tours. None have voted to defund President Obama’s golf trips.

Obama isn't the only petulant little freak in the American government.

And now, the Peepal Conclave. Enjoy.


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