When Government Gets Breached: the South Carolina Cyber Attack

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Geek Smack! episode 242 Tech News:

Hurricane Sandy (wikipedia)

Sandy Takes out Websites
New York based websites Huffpo and were among many that went silent during Hurricane Sandy
Amazon Attacks Apple

How the Kindle is a better and cheaper tablet to the mini
Scott Forstall Out at Apple
Why the Senior VP of is out
Google Nexus 10
2,560 x 1,600 screen. $399
64-bit ARM Coming
AMD announces they will be working on it in 2014
Roku Search 
Great addition to the Roku system. It is still my choice for OTT set top box.
NFC Sharing Android, Windows
Tap to connect between the two devices.
Yahoo! Rejects Privacy
Yahoo! will not comply to IE 10’s “do not track” option.
Paypal Cuts Jobs
325 jobs at Paypal are at risk.
Kill the Computer to Save it?
Peter Neumann says we need to rebuild from the ground up to make a safer, better computer.
Link Pirate Sentenced
Yonjo Quiora sentenced for pirating major sports like NBA, NFL, NHL and Pro wrestling TNA and WWE events.

Geek Smack! Geek News:

Real or Fake?

Real or Fake?

Sandy – Real or Fake
Science – Real life Tractor Beam
Space – Pictures in a Dead Satellite
Meme – Horsehead Streaker
or BBQ sauce – McJordan BBQ Sells for $10,000
LEGO – Strip Club
LEGO – Diamond Ring
Art – Renault Twizzy with Picasso in Mind

Geek Smack: South Carolina Gets Breeched. What Happens now that Government Messed Up.

South Carolina

South Carolina

If you live in South Carolina you might have woken to some startling news. Over 3.6 million social security numbers and 387,000 credit cards were exposed to a foreign hacker.

An investigation is underway on how the hacker got into the South Carolina Department of Revenue. The hacker got into a database using “Sophisticated Equipment.”

Officials urge that if you filed a tax return in South Carolina to contact them. Although over the weekend the flood of calls gave many people busy signals.

Now any IT expert can say that high encryption is not impossible to breech but it’s also not an easy task. However it seems that encrypting data was on the top of the Department of Revenue’s mind as there were 16,000 credit cards that were not under some type of encryption.

This compromised database had only SSN in it – which is pretty odd because a Tax return database would have names, addresses and more. So what was this database all about?

Hackers attack government agencies all the time. It’s like a cyber version of “Oceans 11” – where hitting a casino and getting away with it is a major accomplishment. South Carolina shows us our guard cannot be down for even one minute.

South Carolina residents are encouraged to keep an eye on your credit report. Contact the FTC for a free report at 877-322-8228.


Geek Smack! is a weekly video show and podcast that comes out every Tuesday evening. Your host: Jeffrey Powers – talks tech news, IT news and geek news for the week. Geek Smack! is ©2012 under a Creative Commons no-deriv license. Never take candy from strangers. If you would like more information about what is technology, recent news, Geekazine, and Jeffrey Powers, feel free to contact him. Jeffrey Powers does interviews, just ask!

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