The February CryptoParty will be held on February 20th, at 7 PM at Improving Enterprises in Addison, TX. This month will be a review of 4 of the most common tools taught at CryptoParty. Tor, TrueCrypt, PGP, and OTR.
So in addition to abandoning Wordpress I have gone and moved the site over to GitHub and moved registrars as well. For those of you that were trying to email me during the downtime I apologize for the downtime.
This Thursday is our January CryptoParty. This month our speaker will be talking about Steganography. Steganography: Hide the Fact that You are Hiding - A demonstration on tools for the journalist, activist, and layman .
Back in 2009 I was living in California. My wife and I had just had our first child and I had gotten laid off from an Aerospace company I had been working at. I commuted through a mountain pass every day to get to work. It was a really nice drive through scenic forested mountains. And there was this little gift shop that was barely more than a shack about halfway through the pass. There was a sign on the side of the building that said "Sandwiches and Cold Drinks" and I would think to myself when I drove by that I should stop by someday and try their sandwiches and get a cold drink. I passed it every day for years but never stopped. I was always on my way to work and didn't have time to stop, or I was on my way home from work and was too tired to stop.
This month we will be talking about Bitcoin! Bitcoin is a semi-anonymous decentralized virtual currency. Our speaker will have a class on Bitcoin and as always we will stay after class to help anybody who has questions or needs assistance with any privacy related subject. CryptoParty DFW is held the 3rd Thursday of the month at 7 PM at Improving Enterprises 16633 Dallas Pkwy #100 Addison, TX 75001 Food and drinks will be provided. BYOB. *****THE DOOR MAY BE LOCKED***** The business that hosts us closes at 5PM, but there is a guard that comes by on tour several times per hour and will open the door. One of the organizers will be checking the door on a regular basis as well so please do not be discouraged by a locked door. Even though it isn’t required please consider an RSVP if you plan to attend so that I can get an accurate headcount for food. You can RSVP through either Eventbrite, Twitter, or email me at josh [at] wtftacos [dot] com
So today's major story is about how the NSA has been monitoring the porn habits of "radicals" in an attempt to later use that information to discredit them. This got me thinking of stenography (a.k.a hiding files inside of other files) what if we filled all the porn pictures recursively with the same picture. To a degree in where all pictures would increase in size to a point where your browser could handle 1 or 2 at a time. But with the amount of data that the NSA seems to be siphoning it would cause a major impact on their analytic capabilities. We could even take this a step further. What if we filled all porn images with NSFW images like Goatse (do not Google this unless you are willing to bleach your eyes) and Tubgirl (NSFW do not Google this unless you are willing to scrub your eyeballs with steel wool)? The NSA would be forced to deep dive into the images because they have to see whats inside. Then of course the vomiting would begin.
This month's topic is OTR. OTR (Off The Record) chat allows secure private communications between 2 or more parties. This month we have a guest speaker that will be talking about OTR. As always CryptoParty is free and open to anybody interested in learning to protect themselves. Feel free to bring your laptops or mobile devices. There will be free food and drink, BYOB. Even though it isn't required please consider an RSVP if you plan to attend so that I can get an accurate headcount for food. You can RSVP through either Eventbrite, Twitter, or email me at josh [at] wtftacos [dot] com CryptoParty DFW is held the 3rd Thursday of the month at 7 PM at Improving Enterprises 16633 Dallas Pkwy #100 Addison, TX 75001 Food and drinks will be provided. BYOB.
Another year and another B-Sides DFW has come to pass. This year once again the organizers of B-Sides DFW outdid themselves. Great talks were given, knowledge was accumulated, and friendships were born. I as well as many others had a great time. I am proud to have been a part of such an amazing event. Thanks to the organizers, volunteers, and sponsors that made it happen, thanks for letting me speak at the event and thanks to all those who attended.
This month we will be talking about Tor. There has been a lot of news lately in Onionland (thats Tor slang for the Deep Web) and by request we will be covering Tor this month. We will go over how to use it and what is known about the recent seizures and takedown of many of the hidden service sites. As always CryptoParty is free and open to all. Come join us on Thursday October 17th at 7 PM at Improving Enterprises 16633 Dallas Pkwy #100 Addison, TX 75001 Food and drinks will be provided. BYOB. *****THE DOOR MAY BE LOCKED***** The business that hosts us closes at 5PM, but there is a guard that comes by on tour several times per hour and will open the door. One of the organizers will be checking the door on a regular basis as well so please do not be discouraged by a locked door. Feel free to RSVP on Eventbrite, message me on Twitter, or email me josh [at] wtftacos [dot] com. Food and Drink will be provided, and BYOB. See you there!
I've been invited to speak at the DFW Unix Users Group. I will be talking about TOR this Thursday Oct 3, 2013 at 7 PM at IBM Innovation Center 1177 South Beltline Road Coppel, Texas 75019 You can read more about the DFWUUG here http://www.dfwuug.org
CryptoPartyDFW 9/19 7PM at Improving Enterprises in Addison, TX. 16633 Dallas Pkwy #100 Addison, TX 75001 This month we will be talking about TrueCrypt. We will talk about Whole Disk Encryption, Creating Encrypted Containers, and plausible deniability. Bring your laptops and questions. There will be a brief overview and a live demo. As always it is free. Food and drink will be provided. Also sorry for the lack of updates. CryptoParty DFW is not dead and is continuing as normal. A virulent strain of stomach bug has swept through my home resulting in members of my household being alternatively sick or caring for the sick. Also I traveled to Memphis to speak at B-Sides Memphis on the topic of OPSEC for Mobile. In addition to still recovering from the stomach bug I got a bad case of stage fright and bombed my talk. There will be video up later and I hope that in my nervous ramblings somebody is able to learn something and improve their privacy and security. In addition I will be speaking at B-Sides DFW. My talk will be "Counter-Culture and Tin Foil Hats in the CyberPunk Age" where I will be talking about Activism in the age of the surveillance state. There are still a few seats left at the time of this post so get your tickets now. There is also a Friday night event that will include firetalks and a resume workshop where you can meet with technical recruiters who can help you refine your Resume and "Elevator Pitch". Details here: http://www.bsidesdfw.com/ And finally I am working on video how-to's on installing and using various privacy products. GPG, Tor, and TrueCrypt. I started on the first one and work is progressing slowly but it is progressing. I will post more about it when I have more.
I was a guest in good company today on Huffington Post Live talking about CryptoParty. Give it a look.
Oskar Garcia of the Associated Press did a story about Privacy in the wake of the Snowden revelations. They mentioned the DFW CryptoParty. You can read about it here http://bigstory.ap.org/article/nsa-revelations-reframe-digital-life-some
When the news first broke that our government was engaged in a massive surveillance effort to collect as much information as possible on as many Americans as possible, I at first felt a small sense of smug satisfaction. For months I as well as many, many others have been telling anyone who would listen that our own government was spying on us, invading our privacy, and violating our rights. Most of what was leaked was strongly suspected by many vocal individuals for months. Some listened, some didn't. Back in January I began to organize a local CryptoParty to raise awareness of the NSA activities and to teach anyone tools and techniques to protect their data and identities online. Now what was once smug satisfaction has turned into anger. I hear our law makers try to downplay the scope of the spy programs and trivialize the impact. They claim that its "just metadata" well with "just metadata" I can tell where you've been, when you were there, who you were communicating with, for how long the communication lasted and who you associate with. With "just metadata" I can build maps of your associations and their associations and determine your likely political/social alliances. With "just metadata" I don't care what you were communicating to the other person because that generally isn't as important as the information gained from the metadata itself. The other thing that I am starting to hear is law makers making the claim that these leaks have made us less safe because now the "bad guys" are now aware of what our peeping tom government is doing and are changing their ways. This is just plain wrong. Like I said before many people have known for months about US Government spy programs. Myself as well as many others have taken to other means of communication, encrypted and anonymous, to protect communications from prying eyes. And there is no reason to believe that the "bad guys" have been doing anything different. People like William Binney have been telling everyone for months now that the NSA is intercepting communications on a massive scale. A few brave Senators like Senator Wyden have made mention that there exists a secret set of laws that the federal government uses. Journalists like Glenn Greenwald, Jeremy Scahill, and Julian Assange have been warning us of US Government overreach. Do Law Makers really naively believe that the "bad guys" aren't listening? Or are they upset that they have been outed and are doing damage control to minimize the public outcry because they need to eventually get re-elected. The only thing that the leaks have done is confirm what we already knew, verify that maybe we weren't so unjustified in wearing a tin-foil hat, and finally lift the last veil of skepticism from the eyes of the average person.
Hello everyone. CryptoParty is steadily growing in the DFW area. A few updates.
Although we have known for some time now that the NSA is spying on EVERYONE we can finally prove it via theguardian. Now more than ever its time for us to get together and learn to protect ourselves from this offensive violation of our civil liberties. CryptoParty is a grassroots initiative to teach everyone about how to protect their rights and privacy in the digital age. Come out and join us. We try and meet monthly and have different topics. Bring your laptops, and feel free to ask questions. Thursday June 20th at Improving Enterprises 16633 Dallas Parkway Suite 100 Addison, TX 75001 As always the event is free and open to anyone who wishes to attend and learn more about protecting their privacy and anonymity online. Food and drink will be provided. This month we will have a guest speaker talking about Secure Blogging and Browser Security/Privacy. If you are planning on attending please either register on eventbrite, email me firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact me on twitter so I know how much food to order.
Thanks for everybody that came out. Several people have told me that they were unable to get into the building because the guard wasn't there to let them in. I want to apologize for that and I will do what I can to see that it doesn't happen again. Secondly I wan't to apologize for leaving so early and quickly. My daughter fell and injured her arm, which turned out to be broken so I had to leave to help out with her at the hospital. Here is the slides in both .odp format and .pdf format. ODP format CryptoParty-Tor PDF format CryptoParty-Tor Please join us next month we will be covering Browser Security and Anonymous Publishing.
According to a CNET article feds are having trouble intercepting messages sent with Apple's iMessage service. iMessage is a text messaging service on Apple devices that appears on all iOS devices and new versions of the Apple Desktop OS. Most iOS users have used this on many occasions without realizing it. iMessage integrates seamlessly with the standard SMS services, and intelligently routes messages over iMessage if the device its sending to is iMessage capable (other iOS devices, newer versions of Apple OS X) and connected via WiFi. From the article the DEA has made the claim that "it is impossible to intercept iMessages between two Apple devices" even with a court order. If you read between the lines here the implication is that the DEA has made attempts to intercept communications without a court order. But before you throw your Android Phone in the trash remember that iMessage only works between two iMessage enabled Apple devices that both MUST be connected to the internet via WiFi (or a wired connection in the case of OS X) and not just 3G or 4G cellular internet. If your recipient does not meet all these criteria iMessage defaults to a standard SMS text message which is not secure at all. In any case it is better to use an OTR chat client to send sensitive messages. UPDATE 2013-04-08: Several people have reminded me that this only stops LEO (Law Enforcement Organizations) from capturing the data off-the-wire. A subpoena to Apple can still be used to gain access to the encrypted messages. It is also possible to crack the encryption though I am not sure how difficult this would be since I don't know a lot about the about the encryption methods employed by Apple to store the messages.
I will be giving a talk at Interface Dallas on May 10th entitled "Your Sysadmin got hit by a bus. Now what?" Come out and see me as I tell the tale of a former employer who put all their IT eggs in a single basket. And then that basket called the owner a name and ran away. I will give real world examples and advice on what to do if you are suddenly found Sysadmin-less and have no backup. And how to prepare for the possibility of this happening to your organization.
Next CryptoParty will be held on Thursday April 18th from 7-9 PM at
Improving Enterprises in Addison.
16633 Dallas Parkway
Addison, TX 75001
Topic will be TOR and Tails. Food and drinks will be provided. Let me
know if you are planning on attending.
So the first Dallas CryptoParty was held tonight at the Dallas MakerSpace. We had about 15 people that attended. It was the first one for the Dallas area and although the Demo Gods did not smile on us for a part of the demo it was overall a good time. I am uploading copies of the slides, as with everything I load on the site it is free to download, re-use, and distribute. PowerPoint File - CryptoParty - email PDF Version - CryptoParty - email
The first Dallas CryptoParty will be held on February 20th at 7PM at the Dallas Makerspace The topic for the first meeting will be "Email and GPG". Attendance is free, please bring your laptops. To help us gauge how many people will be attending please either tweet me @scottjosh, email me email@example.com, or register here http://www.eventbrite.com/org/3203119978
I am trying to get a regular CryptoParty going in the DFW area.I have a tentative location to host the Dallas sessions. If you are interested in protecting your identity, communications, or other information please feel free to attend. If you are a journalist or activist and need more discrete attention feel free to email me firstname.lastname@example.org