TOWR Security Brief: 21 Oct 2016

It’s been a little while since our last Security Brief, partly because I’m still working on my master’s thesis and partly because I’ve been writing more over at Patrick Henry Society–including two recent articles on topics you should read if you’re looking to keep from being infiltrated and exploited.

At any rate, there are some pretty disturbing things on the tech/privacy horizon today (every day!). Let’s get started.

More on the ongoing Geofeedia ruckus–apparently police departments weren’t the only ones using it. Public schools were spying on their students too. For their safety, of course.

There’s an interesting study out claiming that workers are largely more productive if you give them some privacy. Novel concept.

Facial recognition is “taking over the US,” and privacy researchers aren’t happy. How bad is it? Take a look.

Esquire says they have proof that Russia has been behind all of the recent data leaks from Clinton/Podesta/etc. Read their article and you be the judge. Then again, does it matter WHO? I posit that it only really matters WHAT.

Dirty Cow is a recently discovered kernel exploit that affects just about every Linux distro out there. Lovely. Here are the links for each Linux distro type:

From the super creepy department: If you’re on Skype and you’re also typing, the people on Skype can take the sounds of you hitting the keys and reconstruct them as text, thereby knowing what you’re typing to other people or in other windows while you’re on Skype. May want to rethink what you’re doing while chatting on skype.

For the hash nerds: Is SHA-256 still safe or is it going the way of md5 and others? says it’s good to go…for now.

In case you didn’t know, a lot of what you see on Twitter may be bots. Also called “computational propaganda.” In other words, you’re being manipulated. Like that’s news.

If you bought a #NeverHillary sticker in the last 6 months, your credit card is probably compromised. Read this for details.

If you’re running a Tor hidden service, don’t be this guy.

You may not have noticed early this morning, but a lot of major sites were down due to a Denial of Service attack.

That’s it for now. If you haven’t registered for the Basic Privacy and Anonymity Webinar in November yet, better get on it.


Author: Kit Perez

Kit Perez is a liberty activist, longtime writer, and intelligence analyst specializing in deception detection and HUMINT. She is prior Air Force, holds a degree with honors in Counterintelligence and has a Master's in Intelligence. She writes at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *