This is what a graph of 8,000 fake Twitter accounts looks like

by @edent | # # # # | 11 comments | Read ~48,947 times.

Recently I've been plagued with Tweets saying that I'm "trending in London." As flattering as that is, it's not true. There appears to be a network of Twitter bots which are randomly repeating other people's tweets, ripping off avatars and bios, and generally causing a nuisance. Looking at the users' Twitter name, I don't think […]

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McAfee's Failure of Trust

by @edent | # # # | Read ~226 times.

Running a website is hard. Let me clarify - setting up a website is dead simple - keeping it running and updated is tricky. Now, for some of us, it doesn't really matter whether our sites live or die. But for big companies like McAfee it's not simple to switch off a site - especially […]

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My Facebook is not Your Facebook - AKA Block Early, Block Often

by @edent | # # | Read ~1,120 times.

I got into an argument with a friend a few weeks ago. I was complaining that I really didn't like the spam that Facebook shoves into my newsfeed. His argument was - and I paraphrase... I don't mind the occasional advert - between the Farmville notifications and "inspirational" quotes, I barely notice them. For me, […]

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Dark Patterns - Opt-Out / Opt-In

by @edent | # # # # | Read ~823 times.

Hanlon's Razor states, "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." It would be nice to think that all mistakes and errors we encounter are just the result of bone-headedness. Sadly, that's not the case. Quite often malicious people deliberately try to trick you into taking actions you would normally have ignored. […]

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The Unsecured State Part 5 - Abandoned Inquiries

by @edent | # # # # | 6 comments | Read ~1,351 times.

This is part 5 of a series of blog posts looking at the security of the UK Government's web infrastructure. The primary cause of the vulnerabilities I've exposed over this series is abandonment. In a flurry of excitement a website is commissioned and created. Then, as time wears on, people begin to drift away from […]

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The Unsecured State Part 4 - UK Government Websites Spewing Spam

by @edent | # # # # # | 5 comments | Read ~5,084 times.

This is part 4 of a series of blog posts looking at the security of the UK Government's web infrastructure. Over the last few days, I've shown that hundreds of websites run by branches of the UK state are in a perilous state of disrepair. There are multiple sites with hugely embarrassing XSS flaws, running […]

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Where is this Pinterest Spam Coming From?

by @edent | # # # | Read ~179 times.

I've started seeing an uptick in Twitter spam - ostensibly from my friends telling me I can make money online. The common denominator is that they all use Pinterest as a vector for spreading the spam. Looking at the accounts of people who have recently tweeted these or similar messages, shows that the majority are […]

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[SOLVED!] Why Are MessageLabs Blocking My Emails?

by @edent | # # # | 28 comments | Read ~112,384 times.

Updated - see end of post! I am not a happy bunny. Last year, while trying to buy a house, Symantec's MessageLabs decided to block my Estate Agent and my bank from receiving any emails from my personal domain. In the middle of a rather stressful house purchase, I had to swap my email addresses […]

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Bloggers - Beware of the ASA

by @edent | # # # | Read ~152 times.

Earlier this year, I received an offer from a sleazy marketing company to place adverts on this blog - on the express understanding that they were not identified as sponsored posts. I reported the company - Media Discovery - to the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) who, after a perfunctory investigation, decided not to prosecute. They […]

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Stopping Coral's SMS Spam

by @edent | # # # # | 1 comment | Read ~2,731 times.

I don't like spam. I'm very careful always to tick the "do not pass my details on to 3rd parties" box on forms. So, when I do get SMS spam, I like to know who has been flouting the rules. See my previous investigation. A few weeks ago, I received this rather annoying message: I'm […]

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