Tag Archives: Tom’s guide

Plan(e)s of deception

We have been on the 5G track for a while and now, as players have been very adamant of taking the wind out of the sails of Huawei, we need to realise what they have, or merely what they have left. So to play nice with the Americans (and a few other governments), we have been drowning in all these new 5G devices, and close to exactly 2018 years after a girl named Mary forked out a little bub named Jesus of Nazareth, we were treated to all kinds of news like ‘New evidence confirms Samsung’s 5G smartphone for Verizon, codename Bolt‘, it seems that the writer Cosmin Vasile was on the ball, and I stipulate only seemed to be. For a former PR person claiming to be a tech journalist we gave him an initial pass. And when he gives us “However, Verizon announced early this month that it has teamed with Samsung to release a 5G smartphone in the United States in the first half of 2019. Now, we have more info that confirms the carrier’s statement” we get the image that there is something happening. It is only now that content creator Joshua Swingle gives us ‘Verizon’s 5G Samsung “Bolt” is actually a mobile hotspot, not a phone‘, so there we see the two parts that matter the most. The first “In actuality, Samsung’s upcoming device is a battery-powered mobile 5G hotspot. At the moment, details are pretty scarce, but a pair of Wi-Fi certifications (via VentureBeat) suggest there are two variants under development right now with the model numbers SM-V570N and SM-V570V“, and the second is “The Verizon model, on the other hand, makes use of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X50 modem. This means it’ll be compatible with the radio frequencies used by the carrier for 5G in the US. While “Bolt” may not be the 5G smartphone everyone was expecting, Verizon customers won’t be missing out on anything. The number one carrier is still expected to offer a compatible version of Samsung’s 5G Galaxy S10 model when it launches“, the problem is that both sources are relying on Verizon to honestly inform them and that is where the problem starts, Verizon is in over their heads plain and simple. It is up against AT&T who rebranded some version of 4G as ‘5G Evolution’ and they are up against Huawei who is a lot more advanced at present, whether or not in America, others can judge Verizon for lagging behind foreign providers soon enough and that amounts to a multi-billion dollar fiasco. In addition, USA Today is giving the people “top executives from wireless powerhouses Verizon and AT&T will give keynote speeches where they are expected to outline why 5G will change the world. Both have launched limited 5G service in select cities, as consumers await the release of mass-market phones that can access the faster 5G signals. The talk will continue to heat up in February in Barcelona for the Mobile World Congress show, where more manufacturers are expected to show off new 5G phones“, we can argue how valid ‘limited 5G’ is, and whether it is actually a valid version of 5G, but that is a debate for later time.

The issue of Verizon becomes more apparent when we consider GSM Arena, which in the past was a really reliable site (and it might still be), however (at https://www.gsmarena.com/there_could_be_as_many_as_five_galaxy_s10_models_lite_vanilla_plus_and_two_5g_ones-news-34909.php), we clearly see the S10 Bolt as a 5G mobile phone. I am willing to accept that GSM Arena is working on good faith with supplied information, in all this we need to wonder whether it is Verizon handing different sources different information, especially in light of: “the Beyond Bolt (Galaxy S10 Bolt) will be a Verizon-exclusive (and will feature a larger battery, though exact numbers are unknown at this point)“, which seen against Venturebeat (at https://venturebeat.com/2019/01/04/samsung-bolt-gets-wi-fi-certification-as-a-5g-hotspot-not-a-galaxy-phone/) where the people get: ‘Samsung Bolt gets Wi-Fi certification as a 5G hotspot, not a Galaxy phone‘, even as we cannot state for certainty how this all started, it seems that there is a clear path of deceptive conduct on a few levels. The entire deception part becomes more polarised when we look at Tom’s Guide who gives us “The fifth device will be known as the Galaxy S10 Bolt, Dutch blog TechTastic is reporting, citing sources. It’s unclear exactly how it’ll get its name, but some important features might tell the story. For one, it’ll work over 5G, allowing you to access the ultra-fast network in areas where it’s available this year. Additionally, Samsung will bundle a larger battery in the Bolt, according to the report. Lastly, it’ll be exclusive to Verizon.” The story (at https://www.tomsguide.com/us/samsung-galaxy-s10-bolt,news-28967.html) gives us a Dutch blogger as the source and they all repeat one another, so as Venturebeat is opening the eyes of many, we see that this game of deception is played on a much larger stage, optionally implying that Samsung and Verizon are working together to create visibility by trying to take it away from Huawei (which in the end is a valid marketing ploy).

It is Forbes that give us clarity by not giving us any. It makes sense and when we see: “both Verizon and AT&T have announced a partnership with Samsung to deliver a ‘5G Galaxy smartphone’ in the first half of 2019. And yes, we know exactly what this is. “5G is going to be about more than just a network. Customers will eventually be able to connect in near real-time to unforeseen possibilities,” said David Christopher, president of AT&T Mobility and Entertainment. “Together with Samsung, we plan to bring the best in technology and innovation to our customers. The future we imagine with 5G is just beginning, and it is a great time to be a consumer.”” Forbes gave us the goods, as others are talking about the 5G Bolt part, Forbes gives us David Christopher who is seemingly informing us on how great it is to be a consumer, he leaves out the part where the consumers are getting misinformed. For the most we want to blame bloggers and technology reporters validly hiding behind words like ‘likely’ and ‘we expect to see’. Yet until the official unveiling in Spain at the end of February we will not actually know what is real and what is not.

So how come that they all got it wrong?

Well, they all merely seem to mimic and user each other as sources, propelling the fable forward (as I personally see it), Venturebeat did their homework and gives us (at https://www.wi-fi.org/product-finder-results?sort_by=certified&sort_order=desc&keywords=SM-V570V,SM-V570&companies=362) the certification sources. There we see (see image) and more important, we see that both are: ‘Category: Mobile Access Point (battery powered)‘, there we see the adults and the children separated, from what I can tell Venturebeat did its homework, the rest got used as the tools they seemingly are.

Is that fair?

That remains to be seen, unless we see at the end of February that Samsung is revealing an actual S10 bolt as a 5G mobile phone, these writers were tools to be used for the entertainment of Verizon, to create a marketing hype on a false product, if there is an actual S10 bolt being released, it also implies Samsung to be part of all this. You see, you do not give two different devices the same name that is a marketing no-no on a very high level. So far we have seen the actions by AT&T and now Verizon as well to be hiding behind the ‘be first’ tactic and not actually being there. It is as I wrote yesterday (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/01/04/dianhua-x2-xinche-xing/), “these players are putting it all one the table, betting everything they have to make a 5G turnaround whilst there is more than one indicating chance that this will falter. That is the gambling stage and all this is done without realising that Huawei does not need to bet, they merely have to deliver what they are promising making the others fold, losing it all over hardware that they cannot provide, or even better are already failing to manufacture“, and by the way, my premise was supported by quotes in the Wall Street Journal, and a few other highly respectable publications on the global scale, I knew what I was looking into. I partially hoped to have been wrong, yet less than 24 hours later we see additional sources merely proving my point. In addition, PC Magazine gives us only 9 hours ago (at https://www.pcmag.com/news/365649/surecalls-5g-booster-cant-extend-at-t-verizon): “AT&T is flat-out calling gigabit 4G “5GE.” Real 5G—5G NR—is coming on a range of frequency bands up and down the spectrum, with the first round of 5G phones and hotspots only supporting some of them“, as well as “Those bands, called millimeter wave, are what Verizon and AT&T are launching first, and they provide tremendous speeds but at very limited range. Unfortunately, the FCC hasn’t even set the rules for millimeter-wave boosters yet, according to SureCall CEO Hongtao Zhan, so those will probably come next year. “I don’t believe we’re the bottleneck of this. There’s no rule, there’s no standard, there’s nothing,” he says. Millimeter-wave boosters can’t be built yet, but Zhan says that’s where we’re really going to need boosters. Millimeter-wave frequencies have trouble penetrating walls. “There will be zero signal inside your buildings; it’s going to be horrible. Something has to be done to solve that problem”“, so not only is 5G a mess, there will seemingly be no reception in the building, so why buy into 5G for now? And is it not interesting that the consumer is mostly unaware to all this? In support we also get: “In my experience, he’s 80 percent right. Verizon has shown me millimeter-wave signal penetrating at least somewhat into buildings, but it drops off pretty quickly. There will definitely need to be some sort of in-building booster for millimeter wave, if the carriers want that frequency’s advantages to work inside.” All that information is missing form so many sources. At least, for me personally there is an upside, with all these additional needs, the need (and value) for my IP is growing close to exponentially, so I feel decent for now. Yet, the people who seem to adhere to David Christopher, president of AT&T Mobility and Entertainment and his view of “a great time to be a consumer” with all the non-given information, at what point will we use these publications to start up class actions against certain players to get 100% refund on hardware we get to keep? What level of punitive damages with the US courts and other courts define as ‘non damage’ and therefor non claimable just to keep AT&T and Verizon afloat?

America is all about suing people, not about holding them accountable and that is something we might see change in 2019, the entire 5G mess is becoming a plane of deception giving rise to certain people and their plans of deception to keep the interest focussed away from other players in this field. And that is not even the start of the failing we see in the US, according to the Gulf Times (at https://www.gulf-times.com/story/617959/Vodafone-one-of-the-first-to-go-live-with-5G-comme) where we see: “From today, GBI will be the first entity to be commercially connected to Vodafone’s 5G network. Moreover, Vodafone Qatar will be the first to commercially connect several consumer customers to its 5G network across Doha starting today. “We are proud to have been the first company to experience the power of Vodafone’s 5G network and now look forward to benefit from it commercially to enhance our operations. We congratulate Vodafone on officially receiving its 5G licence and extend our full support in the journey to accelerate the country towards becoming one of the most technologically advanced in the world,” said Abdulla al-Ruwali, GBI executive director and managing director“, and it is not AT&T, or Verizon. It is Vodafone of all places that has switched it on, completely licensed. Now, this is merely one source, although I got it via Reuters, there are optionally still issues in place and the debate is not over, but there you have it, the US claiming all kinds of stuff and the 5G trophy goes to the Middle East, how is that for a reality check?

The 5G market is a Wild West stage and now we see (or are implied to be notified of the fact) that the camel jockeys and not the cowboys (or Indians for that matter) that seemingly take the victory cake home for now.

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, IT, Media, Politics, Science

Enabling crime

Thursday saw the light of an unsettling situation, unsettling to some that is. You see the article ‘UK police to lose phone and web data search authorisation powers‘ is very one sided. At https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/nov/30/police-to-lose-phone-and-web-data-search-authorisation-powers we see “Senior police officers are to lose the power to self-authorise access to personal phone and web browsing records” and as it ends with “an attempt to comply with a European court ruling on Britain’s mass surveillance powers“, this merely fuels my setting for Brexit. Yet it is not that simple. As people are shouting, screaming and considering how they are allowed, in rights of, and needing privacy. I stopped caring and worrying. When you consider the following parts:

SS7 hack explained (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/apr/19/ss7-hack-explained-mobile-phone-vulnerability-snooping-texts-calls), in 2016.

Here we see “Hackers can read text messages, listen to phone calls and track mobile phone users’ locations with just the knowledge of their phone number using ‘a vulnerability’ in the worldwide mobile phone network infrastructure“. We hear that something was done. It is given with “Since the exposure of security holes within the SS7 system, certain bodies, including the mobile phone operators’ trade association, the GSMA, have set up a series of services that monitor the networks, looking for intrusions or abuse of the signalling system“. So guess what! It was not or ever solved. It is merely monitored, the moment that this monitoring number is tweaked; organised crime has full access to you. This is only the first piece of evidence that European Laws have been enabling criminals and organised crime.

And with the quote “Reportedly, recent security testing of SS7 by an operator in Luxembourg took Norway’s largest network operator offline for over three hours due to an “unexpected external SS7 event”.” we see clear evidence that the criminals are winning. I wonder if those extremely high paid judges are considering that. Because their claim “mass harvesting of personal communications data could only be considered lawful if accompanied by strong safeguards including judicial or independent authorisation and only with the objective of fighting serious crime including terrorism” has no hold on criminals as they are in it for the money, not terrorism.

So even as the Guardian trivialises the danger in the correct way with “given the billions of mobile phone users across the globe, is small”, yet these criminals are learning and learning really fast. The contact book shows them who is connected to important people (for example @RBS.co.uk or @natixis.fr), that list goes on for a while as the contacts are lining up, the tally shows that the value of that person goes up by a lot. And let’s not forget, this level of data mining can be done with most ordinary computers. So as they are seeking data, downloading dumps for later, 99% gets washed and 1% is kept on the computer. I reckon that 99% gets burned on discs for later use and verification. Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai gave warning in an article on May 4th 2016 (at https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/mg7bd4/how-a-hacker-can-take-over-your-life-by-hijacking-your-phone-number), here we see “In 2014, UK authorities warned that criminals were taking over victim’s cell phone numbers and using them to get into the victim’s bank accounts. Now, a social engineering expert is warning that taking control of someone’s phone number is easier than previously thought, thanks to a code normally made of three letters and six numbers called the Porting Authorisation Code, or PAC“, the consequence is given with “De Vere was simply testing this on numbers he owned, but if he had been a criminal taking over other people’s phone numbers, he could have done real damage. Once in control of the numbers, he said, he could’ve use it to approve bank transactions with SMS notifications, bypass two-factor authentication on online accounts such as Gmail, and do other types of fraud” and that was three years ago. So how many operators have increased their levels of security? When I designed the initial solution towards the UK NHS issues, the largest issue I had was to contemplate a new level of non-repudiation, that person and only that person could have requested the medication for a patient. It is that part that gave me an insight on just how casual the online banking security is and this has seemingly been the case for over three years now.

I do believe that security is on the mind of every bank, yet absolute security is an illusion so they resorted to the bank vault principle. They started to design time based security. When you know that burning a bank vault takes 12 hours, you merely need to walk past it every hour to keep it secure. Even with sensors and other things, bank robberies never stopped, they merely became very rare, or better stated extremely rare being successful. In this online efforts are pushed, yet the same issue stays. Now it can be attempted every Nano second by billions, the banks consider that and see the effort as working because only a few ever get through. Yet the end is not near. As given by CNBC (at https://www.cnbc.com/2017/02/01/consumers-lost-more-than-16b-to-fraud-and-identity-theft-last-year.html). Here we see “15.4 million consumers were victims of identity theft or fraud last year, according to a new report from Javelin Strategy & Research. That’s up 16 percent from 2015“, so even as the bank is not all in this, we see in equal measure “Card-not-present fraud — transactions made online or via phone where the cardholder does not need to present the physical card to complete the purchase — jumped the most, increasing 40 percent compared to 2015“, so this implies that 40% more successful actions. This gives us “In all, thieves stole $16 billion, the report found — nearly $1 billion more than in 2015“. That is just the acts of cyber criminals out for cash. The more organised peers are collecting data for other needs. Inside trading data, options to make large cash drops from intelligence, that is the game that does not bring $16 billion, that is the stuff that brings 1000% more, yes, ten times more than current. The issue of non-repudiation could solve part of that, but the banks suddenly become all about ‘customer care’ and not being a hassle. Because their flood comes from casual use with no extra effort required. Their existence is set on that and ‘non-repudiation’ is a more toxic thought for their KPI’s and bonus needs. Even the trivial: “thanks to fraud protections governing credit and debit cards. The mean cost to the consumer was just $48, down from $56, according to the report“, you see it is not the $48 that matters, it will be the fact that your data is out there that matters, when that is flagged the highly priced job you want will be forever out of your reach, because your data is out there and now we see “We warned the government from the start that the authoritarian surveillance powers in the Investigatory Powers Act were unlawful. It should be a source of deep embarrassment that, less than a year after it passed, ministers have had to launch a public consultation asking for help to make it comply with people’s basic rights.“, from an ideological point of view I would side with Silkie Carlo, Liberty’s senior advocacy officer, yet the other side in me stops this, because if the cyber world is a prison, than you gave the prisoners the keys, you made the prison staff vacate the building and these advocates are stating that they prisoners are still in that prison and the doors are watched. But these prisoners can casually go past every wall, tunnel and high rope out of the building never needing the front door and everyone is now in the dark on what is actually happening in that prison, we did not merely lost oversight, we lost sight and visibility of what is going on and that is also the most dangerous of situations, that is when the people forget that by blocking the government and openly giving this all to criminals they are merely shooting themselves in the foot, demanding that the NHS pay for all the needs, medication and staffing to keep them ‘active’, so as the ‘snooper laws’ are altered, the people are forgetting one part that the article is hiding from them. You see, there is a truth in “Restricting the use of communications data to investigations of serious crime but using an offence carrying a six-month prison sentence rather than the usual three-year threshold so that offences such as stalking and grooming are not excluded“, even as that is true, those facilitating for these criminals because they sold other items like routers and computers, those people are out of the race, they are safe and that changes things because finding those stalkers, paedophiles and groomers just became a lot harder, it will take longer to find them and collect enough evidence to make a case against them. At that point remember that the altered snooping laws just gave those roaches 3 times the span to do damage and do 300% more damage to the number of victims.

Yet that casual usage also comes with other prices. As reported in CNBC we see Paul Stephens, director of policy and advocacy for the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse stating: “Third-party budgeting apps, like Prosper Daily and Mint, also flag unusual spending and suspicious charges. Keep tabs on your credit report for new inquiries or accounts opened in your name, said Stephens. Free sites such as CreditKarma and CreditSesame offer free monitoring, and you can also pull reports from AnnualCreditReport.com. Pay attention to any changes in your credit score, too. “A significant shift in your credit score might be a heads up that there’s something wrong with your credit report,” he said“. So now we have to keep tabs on things we never needed to keep tabs on before, how is that any better? It might not be an issue for 80% of the people, but the 20% that ends up getting hit will be in deeper water, deeper than ever before.

That is a part we do not see and matters will get worse with the upholding of this European ideological agenda bullet point. It was a nice to have in an economy of plenty, but those times are forever over and the rule of land and law seems to be shifting, the question becomes in what direction do you want to see it shift into a direction where every household will be required to have some kind of cyber insurance? How much will that set you back? And when you decide not to take it, what will the cost be when you lose a lot more than the inventory of your house because you were on Barbados or St. John’s? It gets even worse, when one of your litter (I think you call them children) decides to Facebook their friends showing off their new fashion or cool item conquest. What happens when the insurance does not cover the house damage because everyone apparently knew you were out of the country?

That is less and less of a speculation, with “Posting pictures of your holiday on social media could leave you open to being burgled – and have an insurance claim invalidated” is becoming a reality. You see, the insurance companies will phrase it as ‘contents insurance limits the number of consecutive days your home can be unoccupied without invalidating your cover‘, apparently it is already in place in some places. This is an issue that has seen the limelight well over 2 years now, and many also state ‘expect you to take ‘reasonable care’ when it comes to security‘, the ambiguity of that goes beyond close windows and locks, it actually includes you bragging on Instagram that you got lucky and ended up blissfully satisfied 2,000 miles from home.

All these issues are now coming more and more to the surface and you do not get to blame the police for that, you yourself voted to give away the keys and limit the options the police had to stop cyber-crimes. It was all connected, you were merely unwilling to see that floodlight and very soon you will see the impact around you. In a world that is mere and more depending on a credit score, on online savvy actions and on knowing who you divulge information to, you decided to give it all to the criminals out there whilst stopping the police all in the same action. So in all this we watch whilst we blame the police and enable cybercrime with our thumbs as we dabble statements through a non-upgraded smartphone. That too is important, because by the end of this year (more likely Q1 2018) over 15% of the current smartphones in use (android phones) will have a phone that will no longer be patched or updated, meaning that at that point we are all open to new forms of attacks, bigger and to a much larger audience. You can read more about that in Tom’s guide (at https://www.tomsguide.com/us/old-phones-unsafe,news-24846.html). Yet, do not worry, the police will be there.

Oh, they won’t be, you stopped that from happening too. Well, good luck to you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, IT, Law, Media, Politics, Science