I Know What You Did Last Winter (Snow Job)

For those who believe revenge is a dish best served cold...

Like so many around the country, David Welles has had to endure a long cold Winter this year -- only made worse by the volume of snow in front of his Chicago home, and the untimely disappearance of his snow shovel. While Welles is no better equipped to dig his way out of a snowstorm than anyone else without a shovel, he was perfectly equipped to identify the perpetrator -- or, at least her car. That's because Welles works for a security company by the name of Tunnel Vision Technology, and it appears as though he's been visiting the supply closet.

While we'll presume that David's "eagle eye" came with a receipt, the snow shovel he caught his neighbor stealing on digital video didn't. Under ordinary circumstances, one might turn the evidence over to the police. Then again, under ordinary circumstances, it's not likely there would have been any evidence. But, these are no ordinary circumstances, and these are no ordinary times.

David's shovel was probably worth less than $25, maybe ten on the street. The trail was cold before it was laid. And the "perp" wore gloves, so no fingerprints. This wasn't about money. This was about the age's-old relationship between a man and his tools. Besides, Welles had another idea. He entered an arms race, added a dose of PsyOps... and then he turned to YouTube. The result? What Welles calls, "The Quadrilogy of My Favorite Snow Shovel". See the results for yourself.

(NOTE: If you are ONLY connaisseur of revenge, skip to the mid-point.)


The Flip-side of Mandatory Data Retention: Flickr Accidentally Deletes 4,000 Photos – Can’t Get Them Back

Zurich-based photoblogger Mirco Wilhelm says Flickr deleted his paid ("Pro") account by mistake and lost 4,000 of his photos. Flickr confirmed that Wilheilm's account was mistakenly deleted after he reported that another user was stealing his photos.

According to an email from the company:

Unfortunately, I have mixed up the accounts and accidentally deleted yours.

Given all the recent discussion regarding government-mandated data retention for investigative purposes, this event certainly emphasizes what can happen when there is no data retention policy in place. Unlike many popular online services, who typically disable accounts before deleting them (if they are ever deleted at all), Flickr apparently sends closed accounts directly to the incinerator.

Read more at http://www.observer.com/2011/tech/flickr-accidentally-deletes-users-4000-photos-and-cant-get-them-back


Filed Under “Things You Thought You Could Take for Granted”: Court Holds there is a Reasonable Expectation of Privacy in the Contents of Emails

Show of hands: How many people have a reasonable expectation of privacy when you send an email? It turns out, as late as December 2010, you may have had no reasonable expectation of privacy when it came to your email correspondence -- at least that was the opinion of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). And, between your Internet Service Provider's (ISP) Terms of Service (TOS), and the 1986 Stored Communications Act (18 U.S.C. §§ 2701-2712), you may not have under various circumstances.

M. Scott Koller, of McKennon | Schindler in Newport Beach, CA has written a very comprehensive overview of the decision, why it was ever in doubt, and the 1986 act that got us here in the first place.

Read more at http://www.reasonableexpectation.com/2011/01/09/stored-email-protected-by-the-4th-amendment/


YouTube the Crime, You Do the Time

WARNING: Portions of this video may be disturbing to automotive enthusiasts.

A brother and sister from Diamond Bar were arrested on suspicion of insurance fraud after investigators found a video on the Internet that appears to show their high-performance 2009 Nissan GT-R sports car crashing during a street race.

Investigators say Jay Chen, 21 from Diamond Bar, California first reported to his insurance company that his sister crashed his 2009 Nissan GT-R supercar on the 10 Freeway on March 16, 2009, but later withdrew the claim. They say his sister, Tracy Chen, corroborated the story. Months later, according to insurance investigators, Chen filed another claim (estimated at $76,000 in damage), saying that he had crashed the same car on the 60 Freeway in Riverside. Having received information from a body shop that they had the damaged vehicle on their premises for several months, an investigator turned to the Internet and discovered evidence the California Insurance Commission calls "key to building the case" against the Chens. Both have been booked on charges of felony insurance fraud.

More @ San Gabrel Valley Tribune (http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_14666391) & California Department of Insurance (http://www.insurance.ca.gov/0400-news/0100-press-releases/2010/release040-10.cfm)

Similar Wikipedia Articles


The problem is, banks have too many humans.

What do you call the sacrifice of one person's privacy in an attempt to save the privacy of over 1300? If you're a bank, you call it collateral damage.

rmb-logoWhen I was a kid I earned my first paycheck passing out fliers for a neighbor who was starting a pool cleaning business. With my first $13 in hand, my grandfather took me to the a bank in walking distance to my home, got me a tour of the vault from the branch manager, a neat pouch to hold all my coin, a full explanation of the principals of savings and loans, and helped me open my very first savings account. Believe it or not, back then, all my account information was stored on a double-sided index card behind the teller.

Today, things are much more complicated. Gone are the index cards and passbooks, most of the employees, tellers and branches, a good deal of the service, interest-bearing accounts with only $13 in them, and a lot of the customers' money. Today, it's all computerized, and most banks even attach various penalties to discourage human contact.

I know an awful lot about electronic data systems, but I don't pretend to fully understand how the modern banking system works. Sometimes, I think I do--from a mechanical (as opposed to financial) perspective. But then something convinces me that I don't. For instance, you know how every so often your bank emails its customers' names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and loan information to Gmail? ... CONTINUE READING »


Electronic privacy is for the birds.

Source: Wikipedia

Source: Wikipedia

In a match between Bird-brain vs. broadband, you might be surprised to see who wins.

An old friend of mine pointed out what sounded like an interesting story out of South Africa. Tired of slow download speeds, a South African call center pitted a racing pigeon against Telkom South Africa Ltd.’s ADSL data service to see which could move a 4GB file faster. In total it took just under three hours for the bird to fly approximately 50 miles--about 30 times faster than the ADSL service, which had only downloaded 4% of the file in the same time.

I'm afraid we're not really comparing apapane to apapane, or even apapane to ostriches. I doubt, for instance, that the pigeon would fair quite as well over, say, a 500 or 5000 mile "data run". ... CONTINUE READING »


You Have the Right to Remain Silent–Even on MySpace

myspace-logo"One in the head still ain't dead!!!!!! On tha run for robbin a bank Love all of yall."

That was 27-year-old Joseph Wade Northington's MySpace status on January 20, 2009, when investigators suspected he robbed the Security Federal Bank in Augusta, S.C.

See C|Net News: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-10251862-93.html?tag=mncol;txt


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