Archive | November, 2009

World Computer Security Day (WCSD) 2009

Information security is a very important thing and something which sadly is ignored by the majority of people.

You can see yourself how bad things are when you are constantly getting MSN messages from ‘friends’ telling you about some awesome pictures of you. All these messages are generated automatically by malware or viruses to self-propagate.

The recent news has been the iPhone worm which recently turned malicious. The funny part is (to me anyway) the whole thing could have been prevented if people just changed the default password on the SSH daemon to something else.

As some of you may know if you’ve followed my blog for a long time, I actually work in information security as a ‘penetration tester’ aka ethical hacker. A certified one at that – OPST.

Most companies think just putting a firewall will take care of everything, how wrong they are..some put anti-virus too, some even go as far as installing anti-virus gateway software on the web proxy and mail server (which is good).

But it doesn’t stop there, it’s about policies and procedures and most importantly of all user awareness! 80% of infosec breaches come from inside, not outside threats.

World Computer Security Day (WCSD) 2009

CyberSecurity Malaysia is the government responsible for promoting cyber safety and Internet security among Malaysian Internet users, they are taking the lead on this year’s World Computer Security Day (WCSD) 2009 which falls on 30 November 2009 – TODAY!

WCSD is an annual event observed worldwide that was started in 1988 by the non-profit Association for Computer Security Day to help raise awareness of computer related security issues. This year marks the first time WCSD is being observed in a big way in Malaysia.

Themed “Computer Security is Everyone’s Responsibility” WCSD 2009 in Malaysia will involve several events and initiatives hosted by CyberSecurity Malaysia in the months of November and December designed to communicate how individual users are responsible in protecting information assets and resources, and practicing safe computing.

There are several ways in which you can participate such as:

  1. Change your password.
  2. Back-up your data. (after being certain that it is virus-free.)
  3. Delete unneeded files.
  4. Install and inspect power surge protection as appropriate.
  5. Verify that all source code is protected from unauthorized changes.
  6. Hold a discussion of ethics with computer users.
  7. Register and pay for all commercial software that is used on your computer.
  8. Install all security-related updates to your computer’s operating system.
  9. Update your anti-virus program (Avast! Avira and BitDefender are free)
  10. Ensure safe browsing by using Firefox and NoScript

You can find the full list here – 53 ways to participate/observe the Computer Security Day

It’s important to report any incidents that happen at your workplace or at home to the relevant authorities, you can refer the incident to Cyber999TM Help Centre by calling 1-300-88-2999, by sending e-mail to cyber999@cybersecurity.my or filling up an online report at www.cybersecurity.my or www.mycert.org.my.

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Eric & Esther’s Engagement in Bentong

This past week has been a crazy one, Saturday morning was hectic too then in the pouring rain it was time to head to Bentong for an engagement party.

It was for Eric (one of the Airtrek club members) and his fiancee Esther at the parental home. Luckily when we reached there it wasn’t raining and the weather was clear and cool.

There were quite a few members in attendance, but not all the treks were out there was a Swift and a BMW 5-series in the convoy too.

Mitsubishi Airtrek Club Members

Of course there was plenty of beer and fun too 😀 My new Mitsubishi Rally Team shirt from Hat Yai.

Edward & Me

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Mitsubishi Airtrek Club Road Trip To Hat Yai – Thailand

I gave a little sneak peak of the Road Trip to Hat Yai when I got back, now is time for the full run-down!

We met up at Sg. Buloh rest stop at 12.30am on Friday night, some people were late though so we ended up leaving a little after 1am. We might quite a few stops as some people were sleepy and some monster treks guzzled the fuel.

Around 7am we reached the Kayu Bukit Hitam duty free shop and the place where we bought our insurance for Thailand, it was RM14! If you are going into Thailand with your car this is a must, also make sure you have a copy of your grant (owners slip/pink slip) or the original as the Thailand immigration will ask for it when you enter. Sun was rising and we grabbed some quick breakfast. There were 8 cars in total.

Airtrek Convoy

It’s also advisable to enter before 6am or after 9am as between those times the immigration queues will be crazy because of the busloads of tourists arriving.

The only problem with traveling at night, with your lights on you are a fast moving bug magnet..I washed my windscreen 3 times on the way there!

Bugs!

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Movie Review – The Ugly Truth – Crude!

The Ugly Truth

Abby Richter is a romantically challenged morning show producer whose search for Mr. Perfect has left her hopelessly single. She’s in for a rude awakening when her bosses team her with Mike Chadway, a hardcore TV personality who promises to spill the ugly truth on what makes men and women tick.

There hasn’t really been any decent comedies this year so I was looking forwards to catching The Ugly Truth.

It’s got a decent rating on IMDB with 6.6 and everyone that saw it (guys included) said it was entertaining so I definitely felt it was worth a watch (and of course Katherine Heigl is hawt so that’s reason enough to watch).

Gerard Butler is refreshingly different from what you are used to (looks like he put on some weight for this) and the chemistry between him and Katherine Heigl is believable.

The story is nice enough and fairly predictable, the pacing is good and the dialogue is witty and crude just how I like it.

Nothing much to comment on when it comes to sound stage or cinematography for these kind of films as it’s not really a concern.

I’m glad I watched the uncensored version though rather than catching it at the cinema.

All in all it was an enjoyable film and I’d recommend it to anyone looking for something fairly light and easy to watch (too many heavy movies lately).

I’d give it a worthwhile 7/10.

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Sekinchan With Shutter Asia – The Ricebowl of Malaysia

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you may remember I went to Sekinchan a couple of years back in June – A Trip to Sekinchan Paddy Fields with Shutter Asia — June 2nd.

I went again this past weekend, we planned to go towards the end of the year this time to catch the paddy fields just before harvesting when they are more yellow.

We were still a little early though as most of the fields were still green, I think the first week of December should be better. Unfortunately though this time of year is the rainy season, luckily in the morning we had fantastic weather and we left after lunch this time and avoided the hideous thunderstorms on Saturday afternoon.

The group picture, it was a big outing this time with around 10 cars.

Shutter Asia in Sekinchan - Group Shot

The paddy fields were a little more yellow than last time and we had beautiful blue skies to compliment the colours, it was blistering hot though.

Sekinchan Paddy Fields

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Movie Review – The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (Män som hatar kvinnor) – Geek Thriller!

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (Män som hatar kvinnor)

Adapted from the Millenium Trilogy by the noted Swedish author Stieg Larsson the first film “Män som hatar kvinnor” focuses on Mikael Blomkvist a middle-aged indicted journalist and a talented young female hacker named Lisbeth Salander who is the real main character of the story.

The Swedes have been coming out with some awesome films this year and last year, a memorable one being Let The Right One In (Låt den rätte komma in), which has shot into the IMDB Top 250.

This film also caught my attention winning a lot of acclaim and of course, regardless of quality I’ll watch any film with a hacking theme.

It turns out that the hacking theme is secondary, this is actually a superb, complex and very well directed thriller focusing on in-depth character studies and exploring some of the darker sides of human nature. The title directly translated means “Men who hate women” so the subtext is about sadism towards women.

Very much a whodunit reminiscent of the Miss Marple movies from the 80’s (based on the Agatha Christie novels) but with a lot of modern twists.

It’s definitely not a film for kids it’s set in a cold, hard, uncomfortable reality where both of the main characters have their own serious problems.

The cinematography is superb and even though it’s 2.5 hours long it never drags and is never boring, the pace is just superb and it really takes you deep into the plot.

I’m personally very glad that’s it’s only the first of a trilogy and I can’t WAIT for the next two movies to come out. Noomi Rapaces is truly outstanding as Lisbeth Salander and I don’t think they could have cast the role any better.

It’s one of the best movies of 2009 for me, it’s a shame it won’t be seeing any commercial releases.

I give it a h4x the planet 9/10.

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Back From Thailand – Airtrek Club Roadtrip To Hat Yai

Just a quick update, still pretty tired from the drive there and the drive back. Was a great weekend though, plenty of awesome food, did some shopping and got to test out the car properly.

Will do more updates on Project Airtrek soon, my only observation right now though is my car HATES RON95 petrol…I had to pump it once because we were in a rural area and there was no choice..and wow does it complain.

Anyway seem to have solved most of the problems the 1000km trip over the weekend was sweet! More on that later.

Couple of pics to get things started. There was 8 cars in total, we met at 12.30am Friday night at Sg. Buloh rest stop, this pic is when we reached the duty free shops just before the Thai border.

Mitsubishi Airtrek Club - Malaysia

This was the hotel we stayed in, B.P Grand Tower Hotel. Good job it was nice as most of us slept until dinner time after driving all night.

B.P Grand Tower Hotel

A picture from the trip back before we left Thailand, on the way from Hat Yai back to the Malaysian border.

Convoy Back

There were only 5 cars on the way back as 3 stayed another day and left on Monday afternoon. Could have used another day there for more shopping and some massages!

Will post a full report soon.

Airtrek power! You can find all posts about this car under Project Airtrek.

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