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Jun. 23rd, 2011 08:31 am Court Roundup


The hot Winkelvoss twins will not take their fight with Mark Zuckerberg to the Supreme Court, probably a wise move since stuff wasn't exactly going their way with this lawsuit anyway. Their original settlement was $20 mill in cash and $45 mill in stock. It's now worth $100 mill.


Meanwhile, everyone's favourite modest, own-box-hauling-and-shredding member of the House of Lords finds out on Friday where he will resume making people his "beeyatches" - in open air, or in a prison somewhere. A Chicago judge will tell Conrad Black on Friday whether he's been punished enough for his confetti-making. It's typically thought that she'll set him free, probably on probation, since he's served 29 months already of his 6.5 year sentence.

Oh, and he'll probably be deported, too, or face some sort of hearing. Will he come back here? Immigration Minister Jason Kenney isn't commenting on hypotheticals. So, probably. Maybe as a new immigrant? Maybe Barbara Amiel could sponsor him - I think she's still got her citizenship. Maybe he could start some sort of secure document shredding company. He's certainly got the experience for it.

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Jun. 23rd, 2011 08:21 am Internet Security Roundup


Were your passwords affected by the LulzSec attack on Facebook et al? Check using the new site "Should my password be changed?" Spoiler alert: if your password is "password", then the answer is yes.


Meanwhile, Britain has charged a 19 year old who has ties to LulzSec for an attack on the CIA.


The hack supposedly only tied up the public portion of the CIA's website, leaving the agency's private information intact. The public website doesn't reveal any secret locations of where the CIA may have faked the moon landing or anything, though.

We all know that was Area 51 anyway.

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Jun. 17th, 2011 08:54 am LulzSec Hits PayPal, Facebook


Among others, including Twitter and XBox Live, apparently. This time their users weren't as "benevolent" as they claimed to have been in the past, posting pornographic pictures on dating websites, chatting using people's Facebook accounts, and stealing PayPal funds.

No comments have been forthcoming yet from the hacked organizations.

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Jun. 8th, 2011 02:28 pm HashbrownGate Gets Bigger


The hashbrown hackers from yesterday apparently also broke into a Conservative party database, stealing names and credit card information of online party donors. LulzRaft is saying that it only did it to prove it could be done and haven't actually done anything malicious. The Conservatives say much of this information was public information anyway, because Elections Canada maintains a searchable database of donors of more than $250.

Then LulzRaft hacked Husky Oil, offering a coupon to Conservatives in solidarity for yesterday's hoax. The code was hashbrowns. Husky Oil took it down as soon as they were notified for comment.

I know I shouldn't laugh but that's kind of funny, actually.

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Jun. 8th, 2011 08:41 am Privacy Commish Investigating Google Again


Jennifer Stoddart isn't done with Google Street Views yet. Now she's asking them to undergo a third-party privacy assessment. The breach they had with Street Views was so egregious that she thinks they need ongoing monitoring. Google has agreed to all of the terms spelled out by the Privacy Commissioner, including more and better training, project tracking and privacy assessments.

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Jun. 8th, 2011 08:37 am


Greek authorities caught the 18 year old who hacked Interpol and the US government. Though he's only charged so far with credit card fraud, there's speculation he's part of a darker militant organization that's connected with bombings.


Meanwhile, yesterday someone claiming to be an admirer of LulzSec, the online hackers responsible for Sony's and Nintendo's woes among others, hacked the Conservative Party website and said Stephen Harper had choked on a hash brown at breakfast. Treasury Board Head Tony Clement took to Twitter to decry the event. I'm slightly surprised that they didn't say something totally outrageous like that Stephen Harper choked when he bit the head off his new cat. People who don't like Harper can believe some pretty outrageous stuff about him, after all.

Here I would link to the fake Liberal campaign ad from This Hour Has 22 Minutes that said "Stephen Harper keeps a dragon in his shed", but it isn't available online. Come on internet, get on that. I know you're running out of IP addresses but that's no reason to get lazy!

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Jun. 7th, 2011 12:55 pm General Wolfe Statue Returned


An old guy with a guilty conscience dropped off a battered statue of General Wolfe at the Lord Elgin hotel in Ottawa over the weekend. The statuette has the signature of Vernon March, who designed the National War Memorial. It's battered a bit, missing a sword, but should give back some faith to all us jaded archivists and curators who figure they've lost something for sure and will never see it again.

Just...don't read the comments. Especially if you're having a bad day at work. No good comes of reading CBC comments about civil servants.

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Jun. 6th, 2011 09:05 am FBI Allies' Passwords Stolen


InfraGard, an associate of the FBI that deals (ironically enough) with U.S. physical and internet infrastructure and threats against the same, had 180 passwords stolen. Lulz Security, the same group that spanked Sony again last week, is the culprit this time. Lulz Security also hacked Nintendo last week, according to Nintendo, though it says no data was lost.

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Jun. 6th, 2011 08:44 am WikiWater Fight


In 2005 the United States began releasing water from Devil's Lake into the Manitoba watershed via a specially constructed channel to the Red River. Manitoba tried to stop this process, because Devil's Lake was aptly named: with no natural drainage, it had invasive species and was seriously polluted. The whole thing went to court.

But apparently it was a lot more bitter than even the news coverage let on, if the diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks are to be believed. The US advised "downplaying" it and denying that there were any invasive species, and it called Canada an empty moralizer on the subject.

Fun fact: the Manitoba premier during this time was Gary Doer, currently our ambassador to Washington. That must be fun this morning!

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Jun. 3rd, 2011 04:16 pm Come to Saskatchewan! Learn How To Become a Spin Doctor!


Unfortunately, one of the unpleasant things about archives is that they don't fund themselves, and those of us who enjoy the expensive habit of preserving history often find themselves forced to stand in front of a camera talking about how great their archival program is and why the powers that be should give it more money. The catch being that the kind of people who are drawn to a quiet life in the stacks are often not the kind of people who enjoy public appearances, going on TV and schmoozing people for money.

If you are from Saskatchewan - or can get here somehow - and you want to learn some useful skills on how to become a world-class schmoozer, spin doctor or shameless self-promoter, then the Saskatchewan Council for Archives and Archivists' June 10 workshop is for you! Garry Aldridge of Points West Consulting is teaching a one-day seminar on public speaking, fundraising and advocacy in Wilcox, Saskatchewan at the picturesque campus of Athol Murray College of Notre Dame Archives/Museum.

What will I do there, Dana? you're asking yourself. So glad you asked! Garry will be instructing you on how to prepare public statements, present yourself in front of the media, fundraise for your group or corporation, and advocate for your institution. You will run through real-world scenarios, prepare press statements, and Garry's crew will film you doing it so you can see for yourself why it's a bad idea to wear paisley on camera while staring at the floor like the Unabomber. (Uh, at least that was what I learned when I did this workshop...) Then Garry will help you prepare a more professional image for yourself, show you how to look unflappable even when someone asks you a question you know nothing about, and just generally improve your overall...Fonzieness, for lack of a better word.

(I cannot promise that you will be able to turn on a jukebox by hitting it, though.)

The registration deadline has been extended to June 8, and because of Canada Post's strike action they'd prefer you to email or fax registrations. The form's at the link above.

As I said, I took this course myself. Here's some of the ways I've used it: report writing for City Council, appearing on television interviews, speaking on the radio, speaking at public conferences, giving tours, writing promotional brochures for my archives, writing newspaper, magazine or website content, speaking at staff meetings, speaking at council or committee meetings, being interviewed by the newspaper, improving my body language for job interviews or meet-and-greet events....

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