It’s been a busy month for events! After attending RightsCon in San Francisco, I co-organized and participated in two CryptoParties here in Phoenix, one at Mod and one at the Burton-Barr Public Library. Missed them? Follow @cryptopartyphx on Twitter, and check out David Huerta’s slides on when ads stare back, Will Bradley’s Prezi on encrypted messaging, and my slides on basic operational security. (Jeremy Leung was our fourth presenter.) You can also check out my Mid-Week MindTweak at Co+Hoots on May 25th at 12:30 to get food truck food and learn some ways to keep your business secure.
Freelancers attending the Society for Professional Journalists Western Regional Conference in Phoenix this Saturday can catch me at the freelancer’s survival hack panel moderated by KJZZ reporter Carrie Jung, where I’ll be answering questions alongside fellow freelancers Jimmy Magahern and Maritza Felix. And, as always, Freelance Spark is the first Wednesday of the month.
As far as posts this month, I do have seven to share.
- Apple Bug Exposed Chat History With A Single Click (The Intercept) I’m excited about this one! Bishop Fox researchers discovered a security vulnerability in the Mac version of Apple’s Messages app allowed users to be compromised by malicious links, and I wrote it up for, uh, the best site of all time (with a fabulous editor)
- 5 Reasons You Should Stop Shortening URLs (Forbes) A recent paper published by Cornell Tech researchers showed that shortened URLs can be cracked to spy on people—but that’s just one reason to avoid bit.ly and sites like it. Here are five more. (And yes, do as we do, not as we say. I do my best to refrain from shortening links myself, but can’t speak for sites I write for!
- This Is The Easiest Way To Password Protect A Word Document (Forbes) How to protect a single Microsoft Office file with a password to stop others from opening and/or modifying it. You don’t even have to download anything. I wrote this post when a friend of mine asked for help and I didn’t know what to say.
- Security News You Might Have Missed: Microsoft Sues The Government Over Secret Cloud Data Searches (Forbes) I miss writing WIRED’s security roundup so much that I’m doing it for Forbes. Microsoft sues the Justice Department, Apple patches a Messages vulnerability but no longer updates QuickTime for Windows, Australian federal police admit to seeking a journalist’s metadata, a study shows that location data from two apps can identify you, and more.
- Security News You Might Have Missed: $1.3M iPhone Hack, Feds Want More Apple Data, More (Forbes) This week, the government revealed it paid at least $1.3m for tool to unlock San Bernardino phone, a transparency report revealed that US government orders for Apple user data quadrupled, the secret FISA court ignored a public advocate’s concerns over FBI access to NSA data for domestic crimes, NSAs were deemed legal (for now).
- Security News You Might Have Missed: Waze Stalking, Email Privacy Act Passes House, More (Forbes) Government requests for Facebook user data spike, awareness of mass surveillance led to plummeted Wikipedia traffic on entries related to terrorism, a former Tor developer now creates malware for the government to track Tor users, and more security news you might have missed this week.
- [Paywall] Community Gardening For Fun And Produce (The Performance Menu) Why and how to get started growing your own food in a community garden.