Debit Card PIN scandal “worst hack ever”

Sensei Posted in Identity Theft
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Citibank only — So far it is just the start. The unfolding debit card scam that rocked Citibank last week, and that has now struck both national and small banks, is far from over, said Aviviah Litan, Gartner research vice president, Thursday, March 9, as she called this first-time-ever mass theft of PINs “the worst consumer scam to date.” “It’s significant because not only is it a really wide-spread breach, but it affects debit cards, which everyone thought were immune to these kinds of things,” said Litan. The problem, she continued, is that retailers improperly store PIN numbers after they’ve been entered, rather than erase them at the PIN-entering pad. Worse, the keys to decrypt the PIN blocks are often stored on the same network as the PINs themselves, making a single successful hack a potential goldmine for criminals: they get the PIN data and the key to read it.
In this case, Litan said, the thieves used the information to crank out counterfeit debit cards, then emptied accounts at ATMs. She estimated that they absconded with “at least a couple of thousand records, maybe more” and have cashed out to the tune of “millions already.” The victim of the hack attack isn’t yet known, although some banks have pointed fingers at OfficeMax, which has denied that its system was penetrated. Litan believes it much more likely that a third-party processor or terminal supplier was involved; the silence about the victim could point to a processor, she said, because they have the most to lose by the negative publicity.
Last summer, credit card processor CardSystems was hit with a massive breach that involved millions of accounts; CardSystems essentially sank under the publicity, and was later bought by Pay By Touch. In February 2006, the FTC reached a settlement with CardSystems that require it to adopt more stringent security measures, but the company remains open to consumer lawsuits that could mean millions in payouts.
So what’s a consumer to do? “Security is tight at the ATM, but point-of-sale is a whole other story,” said Litan. “Look at your [debit card] account on a regular basis, and don’t use a PIN-based debit card at point-of-sale,” she recommended. “I never do.”

Pet KarateTraining.org Style!!

Sensei Posted in Fun Stuff
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Karate CatSo things have been a little crazy lately and I haven’t had a lot of time to finish several of the articles I am working on…so…I decided to dip into the vault of various Martial Arts related graphic and photos and post this one. You’ve heard of Animal planet, well here we run Animal Karate Planet 🙂 So send in your crazy photos of your pets doing their Martial Arts training! This cat is demonstrating the flying side kick for a student. Notice the excellent technique and as we know when a cat executes a flying kick they always land on their feet! 😉

Meditation Point #4

Sensei Posted in A Zen Thing, Quotes
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Truth…

Everyone wishes to have truth on his side,
but not everyone wishes to be on the side of truth.
Richard Whately

Husband Abuse

Sensei Posted in Self-Defense
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This article is not intended to ignore, water-down or otherwise detract from the abuse of women. The purpose of this article is to address a topic not discussed openly. It is the minority of abuse cases however most incidents go unreported for the same reasons that wife abuse went unreported years ago. The reasons are varied but I think we will all agree they are flawed as no one should stay in an abusive relationship. When you stay in an abusive relationship you have to roles, the victim and the enabler. No we must recognize that not all victims are in a position (or think they are not) to leave immediately. These victims should be aware of the resources and support groups available to them. Because when we do not leave you put yourself, your children, your friends basically everyone at risk of physical harm or death. With that being said let’s look at this no so unusual but rarely reported case of husband abuse.
Mr. Tay Joo Meng, 35, holds a black belt in Taekwando but whenever his wife attacked him, he was meek as a lamb. For the past three years Mr. Tay Joo Meng was treated like a punching bag. He was screamed at and physically assaulted in his own home by his wife. Once, his wife, 27 year old, Chaifu Charin, hit him so hard on the head that he lost his hearing in one ear permanently. Still, he suffered in silence. He said it was because he loved his wife. Last year on Nov. 6th she went to far, not with her husband but for the police to ignore. On that evening the 27-year-old Thai, Chaifu Charin, staggered home drunk at 3 AM. Mr Tay helped her into the bedroom of their four-room flat in Jurong West. For no apparent reason, Charin lashed out at Mr Tay, punching and kicking him.
Charin then ran into the kitchen, grabbed a knife and charged towards him cutting him slightly across the abdomen. Still hysterical, Charin ran into the living room, picked up two of her husband’s bowling balls and flung them out of the balcony of their 11th-storey flat. For injuring Mr Tay and putting the lives of others at risk, Charin was sentenced to three months in jail on Wednesday.
Despite all this and more Mr Tay maintains that he still loves his wife deeply and will wait for her release. He has forgiven her, but harbours fears that she will blame him for landing her in jail. ‘I don’t regret marrying her,’ he said. ‘I am just sad that I couldn’t help her with her problems.’ And so he waits with their 3 year old daughter for his abusive wife’s release, despite his fears.
We fear his life will return to the same, more importantly we worry about the life of his daughter. Please post comments about this story or domestic abuse in general.

Preparation

Sensei Posted in For Kids, Fun Stuff, Training notes,Tags: ,
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Be Prepared

Microsoft Fingerprint Reader a Security Threat

Sensei Posted in Identity Theft
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Microsoft’s Fingerprint Reader, a PC authentication device that Microsoft has been shipping since September 2004. A security researcher with the Finnish military has shown how they could steal your fingerprint by taking advantage of a vulnerability in the Fingerprint Reader. Microsoft has never promoted the device as a security device, only as a tool to prevent unauthorized people from logging into your computer. The researcher was intrigued by a caveat about sensitive data Microsoft included with the device. This prompted Finnish military researcher, Mikko Kiviharju, took a closer look at the product. He presented his findings at the Black Hat Europe conference last week, he reported that because the fingerprint image taken by the scanner is not encrypted, it could be stolen by hackers and used to inappropriately log in to a computer. Due to the transfer of the fingerprint in an unencrypted format the transfer could be stolen using various hardware or software technologies like sniffers.
Kiviharju’s report: [ 1 ] [ 2 ]

Kung Fu demonstration in Beijing

Sensei Posted in Styles, Technique, Training notes,Tags:
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This 8 min 14 sec video is an incredible demonstration of Kung Fu…take a look at this beautiful Martial Art in practice.

Meditation Point #3

Sensei Posted in A Zen Thing, Quotes
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We feel and know that we are eternal.
Spinoza

Unfit Self-Defense

Sensei Posted in Fun Stuff
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Unfit By Mike Belkin


I’m not sure Mike Belkin intended to do this but this is a great spoof on the importance some people place on words. It’s also a nice intro to the sticks-n-stones article I am working (to be posted soon)! Here Trudy is attempting to goad Mike into leaving her alone. Not a very effective attack given Mikes expressions:).

Special thanks to Mike Belkin for granting us permission to post this comic strip here!

Rape Prosecution a closer look…

Sensei Posted in Self-Defense
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It is sad but a Rape happens to a Woman almost every other minute. That’s almost 720 new Rape victims a day, a very sad satistic. Since these crimes will continue to happen it is important to understand what is needed to prosecute the rapist after the crime. We say this because almost half of the rapists are arrested, which means almost half go free. The reason for this too often is that the police need evidence. In some cases the Rapists are smart enough to remove most of the evidence, some even have taken the bed sheets with them! Still there is hope because evidence may still exist. Unfortunately in an attempt to overcome the trauma of a rape many victims understandably shower themselves. Unfortunately showering can and does destroy crucial evidence that is necessary for a conviction. While it is an unpleasant topic it is important that women are aware what steps they should take following a rape to improve the chances the rapist will go to jail.
The first thing a woman should do is call for help, dial 911 (in the USA) or your local police, make them take you to the hospital so evicence can be collected properly. If you are sure what to do or aren’t comfortable calling the police call CrimeStoppers at 1-877-68-CRIME. Important steps you can take, Don’t shower, Save you clothes from the crime, Try to remember any small details about the rapist the police may find useful, seek professional help from a local Woman’s center or rape crisis center. And remember that it isn’t your fault no matter what the situation or circumstance.