Weekly Wrap 47

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets. Thanks to the collision of Easter and Anzac Day to create a very long weekend indeed, there were only three official workings days.


There was no Patch Monday podcast because Monday was a public holiday. However I did record the key interviews for the next two episodes. That’s the furthest ahead I’ve ever been.


  • Tired Microsoft delivers solid profits, for now, for Crikey, which as you might imagine is a commentary on the company’s quarterly results.
  • I also wrote a piece for ZDNet Australia that should be published tomorrow, and my first two opinion pieces for an outlet that… well… I’ll tell you about that next week.

Media Appearances

  • On Wednesday I was interviewed by Carol Duncan on ABC Radio 1233 Newcastle about the security breach of Sony’s PlayStation Network. The audio is available at the ABC website.
  • I was interviewed on the same subject by the OzSpot gaming podcast, a production of CBS Interactive’s GameSpot.
  • [Update 8 May 2011: The direct link to the podcast doesn’t work. You’ll have to scroll down the list of episodes in the “archive” section on the right to find the one for 26 April.]

  • On Thursday I was interviewed by John Kenneally and Jane Doyle on Adelaide radio FIVEaa about… the Sony PlayStation Network hack. There’s no audio published at their website. Should I post my copy, do you think?

Corporate Largesse



Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream. The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

[Photo: Road to Bunjaree Cottages, taken earlier today. This is one of the dirt roads leading to Bunjaree Cottages, which is where I’ve been staying off and on for the last three months. This isn’t the official road to take, as for a short distance it crosses through private property, but it’s the way I usually take when walking into Wentworth Falls.]

Weekly Wrap 43

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets. This week I’m slowly getting back to the normal level of media work, it seems.

I’ve even completely finished the coming week’s edition of the Patch Monday podcast and sent it to ZDNet Australia. I feel so… productive!



  • Iranian hackers prove internet security is rubbish, for Crikey, explaining the implications of the presumed-Iranian hackers managing to issue themselves fake SSL certificates.
  • Electronic voting a threat to democracy, for ABC Unleashed. This opinion piece essentially says that the security risks outweigh the convenience. I was most amused to see commenters claim that I’m therefore “afraid of technology” because I don’t understand it. Convenience is everything, apparently.

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

  • Shiva Kumar from PR firm Edelman bought me a cup of coffee on Monday when he briefed me on using LinkedIn. LinkedIn themselves then provided me with a free Pro-level account.


Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream. The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

[Photo: The view from Wattle Cottage, which is where I’m living this weekend. Of course it’s one of the Bunjaree Cottages at Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains, where I’ve been based since early February. This is the first time I’ve stayed in this particular cottage and the view brings with it a vast number of birds.]

Weekly Wrap 1

Starting today, each Saturday or Sunday I’ll post a list of the stuff that I’ve had published elsewhere in the previous week.

  • Patch Monday podcast #44: Microsoft versus the cybercriminals. A look at some of the less-well-known work Microsoft is doing in this field — including Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit sponsoring a pop song in Nigeria, a legal tactic for taking down botnets, and how they identify malware through reputation analysis.
  • How evil is Google, exactly? for ABC Unleashed. My argument is that Google’s collection of random Wi-Fi data isn’t the massive privacy breach some people are making out, but that it does raise serious questions about whether Google can be trusted. The comment stream is fascinating.
  • Turks hack Israeli Facebook accounts over Gaza blockade incident for Crikey. This appears to be the first time that individual Facebook users’ accounts have been the target of political hacking, as opposed to those taking an active part in the propaganda war.

I also did a radio spot on 891 ABC Adelaide early on Monday morning, but I wasn’t quite awake and I forgot to record it. If I recall correctly, I spoke about my visit to Microsoft’s Redmond campus.

If you’re still short of reading for this long weekend, you can always dig back further into my media output.

Byteside Tech: the Dark Side

Byteside logo

Tuesday night I was on the panel for Byteside Tech episode 4, this time discussing the dark side of the Internet where the hackers and criminals lurk.

The other panellists were David Peterson from Trend Micro; David Hollingworth, editor of Atomic; journalist Stephen Fenech from the Daily Telegraph; and host Seamus Byrne. And here’s the video.

Once more, we seem to be remarkably enthusiastic. What is it about this event?

If the embedded video doesn’t work for you, click through.

One thing I find interesting about this subject is that so much of it is brand new even for people with an in-depth knowledge of their own field of IT. Does this mean that security issues simply don’t get the coverage they deserve?

The bad guys pwn the Internet

Crikey logo

“Be afraid. Be very afraid. Online criminals are after your personal data. They’re smart. They’re professional. They’re efficient. Meanwhile, those guarding your data are overloaded, under-coordinated and, often, under-trained.”

That’s how I started a piece in Crikey on Tuesday, written after the general manager of AusCERT had given his scary presentation.

UK banks are now seeing criminals correlating data captured from different malware runs, compiling detailed personal profiles. That information is then used to target specific individuals in corporations with an email that looks so legitimate they can’t help but click through  – targeting, say the CFO who knows about planned company mergers or the discover of a new oil field. The aim? Advantage on the stock market.

The article is free to read, so off you go!