29 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
The Telecom Digest for April 15, 2011
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Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2011 00:57:34 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Adobe Releases Security Advisory for Flash Player, Reader, and Acrobat Message-ID: <email@example.com> http://www.us-cert.gov/current/#adobe_releases_security_advisory_for7 Adobe Releases Security Advisory for Flash Player, Reader, and Acrobat added April 12, 2011 at 10:39 am | updated April 12, 2011 at 02:00 pm Adobe has released security advisory APSA11-02 to alert users of a vulnerability affecting the following Adobe products: * Flash Player 10.2.153.1 and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and Solaris * Flash Player 10.2.154.25 and earlier versions for Chrome * Flash Player 10.2.156.12 and earlier versions for Android * the Authplay.dll component that ships with Adobe Reader and Acrobat X (10.0.2) and earlier 10.x and 9.x versions for Windows and Macintosh. Exploitation of this vulnerability may allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial-of-service condition. The Adobe advisory indicates that this vulnerability is currently being exploited in targeted attacks via a Flash (.swf) file embedded in a Microsoft Word (.doc) file delivered as an email attachment. However, the method of attack can change at any time. At this time, Adobe has not released a fix to mitigate this vulnerability. US-CERT encourages users and administrators to do the following to help mitigate the risks until a fix becomes available: * Review Adobe security advisory APSA11-02. * Exercise caution when opening unsolicited email attachments. * Refer to the Using Caution with Email Attachments Cyber Security Tip for more information on safely handling email attachments. Additional information can be found in US-CERT Vulnerability Note VU#230057. US-CERT will provide additional details as they becomes available. US-CERT Vulnerability Note VU#230057 http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/230057 Security Advisory for Adobe Flash Player, Adobe Reader and Acrobat http://www.adobe.com/support/security/advisories/apsa11-02.html
Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2011 18:12:54 -0700 From: Sam Spade <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: After Breach, Companies Warn of E-Mail Fraud Message-ID: <eIqdnYHfqPaL1zvQnZ2dnUVZ_iydnZ2d@giganews.com> (PeteCresswell) wrote: > Per Sam Spade: > >>My wife uses her email very carefully to a small group of social >>contacts. Yet, she gets some spam. > > > Rule#3: Avoid using a name as your email address. > e.g. Pete@Whatver.com = Bad > PC@Whatever.com = Better > xafgwpq.com = Least spam-prone.... > > This helps mitigate dictionary attacks where somebody > matches a collection of first names to a collection > of domain names. > > "Least spam-prone" and not "Best" bc of anticipated > difficulty telling somebody verbally what one's address > is. Not for me. That lets the spammers win.
Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2011 21:35:02 -0500 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Robert Bonomi) To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Does FiOS support rotary phones? Message-ID: <f6udnW-UaNXLwDvQnZ2dnUVZ_gadnZ2d@posted.nuvoxcommunications> In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Lisa or Jeff <email@example.com> wrote: >On Apr 11, 10:42 pm, bon...@host122.r-bonomi.com (Robert Bonomi) >wrote: > >> In the U.S., with POTS service, virtually all end-users have basic >> protection against such 'at the DEMMARC', provided by the telco. >> >> There are multiple reasons for the telco providing it. For starters: >> >> 1) given a strike on telco wiring, with a surge following the telco >> wiring into the property, and possibly injuring someone inside, the >> telco does have legal liability. >> >> 2) if there is a strike on the end-user property, the telco doesn't want >> that surge 'backing up' into the telco system, and blowing out lots >> of other customer pairs. > > Our apt building has no such protection. I've lost a few modems > from lightning strikes a distance a distance away, as others > mentioned. Several of my neighbors were affected too during the > same storm. The telco-supplied protection is designed to prevent life-threatening situations into the premises, and wiring threatening surges from propagating back to the network. 'Minor' excesses, can easily 'fry' many types of CPE without triggering the "life-saving" gear. > Not every subscriber has a demarc box. Every installation does have a DEMARC. Whether or not it is a distinct 'box' is irrelevant. > Our complex does not have them, and I understand that situation is > typical for such older buildings. On the exterior of the building > is a large telco junction box, which serves as a mini-distributing > frame connecting the underground cable to the lines that serve each > apt. Residents do not have access to that junction box. I'm willing to bet that there are "circuit protective" devices inside that box. They may be as simple as passing bare wire "close" to a ground bus, so that a life-threatening surge/spike will jump the gap and short to ground. > For 99% of the residents not having a demarc is not an issue. I repeat, -every- customer circuit has a DEMARC. It always exists, because it is defined by statute and utility commission rules/regulations. Whether or not there is a 'box' there -- with, or without a customer- accessible test-point -- is irrelevant to the existence of the DEMARC. [Moderator snip]
Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2011 10:51:46 -0500 From: Neal McLain <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Comcast bumps up speed for home-Internet users Message-ID: <4DA71812.firstname.lastname@example.org> By Jon Swartz, USA TODAY, April 14, 2011 SAN FRANCISCO - Home Internet users' need for speed is about to get a major rush. Comcast on Thursday is expected to announce a new, blur-fast residential service, called Extreme 105, available to consumers in more than 40 million homes in San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Miami, among others. The service delivers data at 105 megabits per second - more than 60 times faster than a T-1 line, which most businesses rely on, Comcast says. http://tinyurl.com/6k4tgy6 Neal McLain
Date: Fri, 15 Apr 2011 00:15:10 -0400 From: email@example.com (Jim Bennett) To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Comcast bumps up speed for home-Internet users Message-ID: <20110415041510.GD32349@telecom.csail.mit.edu> > Jon Swartz, writing in USA TODAY [April 14, 2011] wrote: > > The service delivers data at 105 megabits per second - more than 60 > times faster than a T-1 line, which most businesses rely on, Comcast says. > Comcast has been comparing their basic business package to T1 service in their radio ads for a while now. I have always found it to be an "apples to oranges" comparison, because most businesses that I know who have a T1 use it for phone service - as it was intended. Some companies have a dynamic data service T1 or similar connection type that is also used for internet access, but that is usually part of a hosted VoIP package intended to replace centrex. And just to be a total semantic PITA [something I do often], bitrate is not the same thing as speed: Speed is a measure of how long it takes to get from point A to point B, which is quantified as latency. Latency in packet networks is measured in milliseconds, whereas on a T1 or other SDH pipe it is measured in microseconds. That said, it is true that virtually everyone uses the term "fast" to mean "high bitrate," so Comcast is only speaking the language of the land, and one can't fault them for that. However, it would make more sense to compare their new offering to similar offerings in urban and suburban areas from other providers, such as metro ethernet service at 100 Mbps. In some urban areas, the big telecom players are rolling out metro ethernet offerings at even higher bitrates than that. Jim ************************************************** Speaking from a secure undisclosed location. ***** Moderator's Note ***** At least in this state, many companies go to a Competive Local Exchange Carrier (CLEC), and order a "T1" line for both their phone circuits and for data. It seems there is a "tariff niche" which specifies a discounted rate for T1 lines whenever they are used for voice traffic, so those companies get data connections at a fraction of the rate that would be charged for T1 circuits if they were used only for data. Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2011 17:48:19 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Do Cellphones Cause Brain Cancer? Message-ID: <email@example.com> Do Cellphones Cause Brain Cancer? By SIDDHARTHA MUKHERJEE April 13, 2011 On Jan. 21, 1993, the television talk-show host Larry King featured an unexpected guest on his program. It was the evening after Inauguration Day in Washington, and the television audience tuned in expecting political commentary. But King turned, instead, to a young man from Florida, David Reynard, who had filed a tort claim against the cellphone manufacturer NEC and the carrier GTE Mobilnet, claiming that radiation from their phones caused or accelerated the growth of a brain tumor in his wife. "The tumor was exactly in the pattern of the antenna," Reynard told King. In 1989, Susan Elen Reynard, then 31, was told she had a malignant astrocytoma, a brain cancer that occurs in about 6,000 adults in America each year. To David Reynard, the shape and size of Susan's tumor - a hazy line swerving from the left side of her midbrain to the hindbrain - uncannily resembled a malignant shadow of the phone (but tumors, like clouds, can assume the shapes of our imaginations). Suzy, as she was known, held her phone at precisely that angle against her left ear, her husband said. Reynard underwent surgery for her cancer but to little effect. She died in 1992, just short of her 34th birthday. David was convinced that high doses of radiation from the cellphone was the cause. Reynard v. NEC - the first tort suit in the United States to claim a link between phone radiation and brain cancer - illustrated one of the most complex conceptual problems in cancer epidemiology. In principle, a risk factor and cancer can intersect in three ways. The first is arguably the simplest. When a rare form of cancer is associated with a rare exposure, the link between the risk and the cancer stands out starkly. The juxtaposition of the rare on the rare is like a statistical lunar eclipse, and the association can often be discerned accurately by observation alone. The discipline of cancer epidemiology originated in one such a confluence: in 1775, a London surgeon, Sir Percivall Pott, discovered that scrotal cancer was much more common in chimney sweeps than in the general population. The link between an unusual malignancy and an uncommon profession was so striking that Pott did not even need statistics to prove the association. Pott thus discovered one of the first clear links between an environmental substance - a "carcinogen" - and a particular subtype of cancer. The opposite phenomenon occurs when a common exposure is associated with a common form of cancer: the association, rather than popping out, disappears into the background, like white noise. This peculiar form of a statistical vanishing act occurred famously with tobacco smoking and lung cancer. In the mid-1930s, smoking was becoming so common and lung cancer so prevalent that it was often impossible to definitively discern a statistical link between the two. Researchers wondered whether the intersection of the two phenomena was causal or accidental. Asked about the strikingly concomitant increases in lung cancer and smoking rates in the 1930s, Evarts Graham, a surgeon, countered dismissively that "the sale of nylon stockings" had also increased. Tobacco thus became the nylon stockings of cancer epidemiology - invisible as a carcinogen to many researchers, until it was later identified as a major cause of cancer through careful clinical studies in the 1950s and 1960s. But the most complex and most publicly contentious intersection between a risk factor and cancer often occurs in the third instance, when a common exposure is associated with a rare form of cancer. This is cancer epidemiology's toughest conundrum. The rarity of the cancer provokes a desperate and often corrosive search for a cause ("why, of all people, did I get an astrocytoma?" Susan Reynard must have asked herself). And when patients with brain tumors happen to share a common exposure - in this case, cellphones - the line between cause and coincidence begins to blur. The association does not stand out nor does it disappear into statistical white noise. Instead, it remains suspended, like some sort of peculiar optical illusion that is blurry to some and all too clear to others. (A similarly corrosive intersection of a rare illness, a common exposure and the desperate search for a cause occurred recently in the saga of autism and vaccination. Vaccines are nearly universal, and autism is relatively rare - and many parents, searching to explain why their children became autistic, lunged toward a common culprit: childhood vaccination. An avalanche of panic ensued. It took years of carefully performed clinical trials to finally disprove the link.) The Florida Circuit Court that heard Reynard v. NEC was quick to discern these complexities. It empathized with David Reynard's search for a tangible cause for his wife's cancer. But it acknowledged that too little was known about such cases; "the uncertainty of the evidence . . . the speculative scientific hypotheses and [incomplete] epidemiological studies" made it impossible to untangle cause from coincidence. David Reynard's claim was rejected in the spring of 1995, three years after it was originally filed. What was needed, the court said, was much deeper and more comprehensive knowledge about cellphones, brain cancer and of the possible intersection of the two. Allow, then, a thought experiment: what if Susan Reynard was given a diagnosis of astrocytoma in 2011 - but this time, we armed her with the most omniscient of lawyers, the most cutting-edge epidemiological information, the most powerful scientific evidence? Nineteen years and several billion cellphone users later, if Reynard were to reappear in court, what would we now know about a possible link between cellphones and her cancer? To answer these questions, we need to begin with a more fundamental question: How do we know that anything causes cancer? ... http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/17/magazine/mag-17cellphones-t.html
Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2011 19:36:56 -0500 From: "Michael G. Koerner" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Islamic Mobile Service from SalamFone Message-ID: <rfmdnWP1Xe60DjrQnZ2dnUVZ_h6dnZ2d@ntd.net> On 2011.04.12 22:53:18, David Clayton wrote: > On Mon, 11 Apr 2011 21:30:40 -0500, Robert Bonomi wrote: > >> In article<BANLkTim4vPLRA1MgOXGJBLNXKoRr0QszDA@mail.gmail.com>, John >> Mayson<firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: >>> Interesting... >>> >>> Salamfone Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Kuwait's Re Reach Telecom has >>> launched the first ever Shariah Compliant mobile service in the world ... >>> >>> ***** Moderator's Note ***** >>> >>> I don't usually run PR notices like this (Sorry, John), but I'm making an >>> exception because I'm curious what the readers think about this kind of >>> marketing pitch. >> >> As it apparently involves sending SMS messages and calls to the phone at >> random times, it should discourage the use of those phones as detonators >> for the not-so-smart bombs wearing clothing by duPont. >> >> This sounds like a good thing to me. grin > > Unless these random messages appeared at least every couple of hours, then > they would be ineffective as any such "discouragement". How do you think > people would react to random messages arriving ~10 times a day to their > phones? Seeing as there is a general call to prayer five times a day in Islam, it could be useful for that. Also for local 'break the fast' times during Ramadan. Another 'App' could, using GPS and other technological cues, point the user in the direction of Mecca for those prayers (an app that could also be useful to the Jewish crowd for prayers that require the user to face Jerusalem). -- ___________________________________________ ____ Regards, | |\ ____ | | | | |\ Michael G. Koerner May they | | | | | | rise again! Appleton, Wisconsin USA | | | | | | ___________________________________________ | | | | | | _______________
Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2011 20:50:41 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: How to Fix (Or Kill) Web Data About You Message-ID: <email@example.com> How to Fix (Or Kill) Web Data About You By RIVA RICHMOND April 13, 2011 As more of our social lives, shopping sprees and dating misadventures take place online, we leave behind, purposely or not, a growing supply of personal information. Marketers, employers, suitors and even thieves and stalkers are piecing together mosaics of who we are. Even when it is accurate, it may not present a pretty picture. For a glimpse of your mosaic, type your name into Spokeo.com. Prepare to see estimates of your age, home value, marital status, phone number and your home address, even a photo of your front door. Spokeo, one of several services like this online, will encourage you to pay $15 or more, for a full report with details on income, hobbies and online social networks. Snoops who take the time to troll further online may also find in blog posts or Facebook comments evidence of your political views, health challenges, office tribulations and party indiscretions, any of which could hurt your chances of admission to school, getting or keeping a job or landing a date. Many privacy experts worry that companies will use this data against users, perhaps to deny insurance coverage or assign a higher interest rate on a loan. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/14/technology/personaltech/14basics.html
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