A Forged “From” Address

To the left we see part of a malicious email. The author brags about how the From address is the same as the To address. This is supposed to mean that the author has broken into my email account. I have been waiting patiently for someone to mail one of these to me. Now I... Continue Reading →

Interesting Email Scam I Received

I received an impressive email scam recently. My response was to forward it to the email provider's abuse contact (abuse@outlook.com) and file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ic3.gov). I'll include the whole email later. The bottom line: Scammer has my password and will humiliate me if I don't pay $1900 in bitcoin.... Continue Reading →

How to Trace an Email Message

There is no way to verify an email's contents except through cryptography. Until every email client includes encryption and reliable authentication, we should always doubt an email's source. We can increase our confidence in an email a little, though, by tracing its path through the mail system. I use this technique more-or-less daily to look... Continue Reading →

Comparing Leaks: Trump vs. Hillary

As I said in an earlier post, no crime is committed if the appropriate official leaks sensitive classified information. This applies to both Secretary Clinton's email server and President Trump's unfortunate meeting with Russian diplomats. Both carried the authority to disclose what they disclosed. One question remains: what damage might have ensued from each leak? I would argue... Continue Reading →

#PodestaEmails are NOT obvious fakes

Emails are notoriously hard to validate. Emails are like typed, signed contracts with no section or page numbers: you can take out or add whatever pages you want as long as you keep the signatures. Intelligence expert Malcom Nance has tweeted that Wikileaks' recent collection of Podesta emails contain "obvious forgeries." It is hard to detect emails forgeries... Continue Reading →

Election Crypto Conspiracy Theory

I'm not often a fan of conspiracy theories, except for entertainment value. This one is interesting because it combines international intrigue, the elections, and our world of notoriously poor email security. The conspiracy arises from foreigners trying to influence the United States election. They spy on unprotected emails and leak the contents to influence US... Continue Reading →

Clinton’s Email Server Isn’t Her Scandal

Early last month, Edward Snowden criticized former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for obviously and intentionally mishandling classified information by using a private email server. A recent Huffington post argues that, if true, Snowden's comments could cost Clinton the Democratic Presidential nomination. This rests on technical questions of security and classified information. Based on the information I have seen, Clinton... Continue Reading →

A Script to Generate Spam Comments

The text attached to this post was submitted as a web site comment. No doubt some spambot was supposed to select randomly from the text to produce a unique-looking spam message. I know I've received lots of spam comments that this script might have generated: personal-sounding messages that are content-free. I've used similar scripts to... Continue Reading →

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