The Sizzle

Issue 207 - Tuesday, 9th August 2016 - I Lost My Girl To The Rolling Stones


QuadRooter exploit gives an attacker God mode on Qualcomm based smartphones
Check Point has revealed QuadRooter - four vulnerabilities targeted as smartphones running Qualcomm SoC's, which is practically every Android phone out there. Three of the four issues have been patched, and a fourth is coming, but that requires your OEM to actually release an update to Android that includes these fixes. In the meantime, the vuln can be exploited by installing a dodgy app, that requires no special permissions in particular to get access to pretty much anything they want on the device.

Delta's computers caught fire, so the airline pretty much shut down for a day
Delta, the world's largest airline in terms of revenue (though AA recently *just* pipped them for revenue) and one of the top 3 by distance flown and passengers carried, had a catastrophic data centre failure that lead to all the grounding of all their flights for almost half a day and up to 2 or more days of further disruptions. A fire took the DC offline during routine backup generator testing, haha. Fuck that's a bad day at the office for the IT crew. Apparently airlines coming to a screeching halt because of computer fuck ups is becoming more frequent.

Hulu is no longer free
Hulu will shitcan the free ad supported streaming thing. Something for those of you who like Hulu via a VPN or whatever might want to know about. There'll be two plans now - US$8/m for ads and US$12/m for no ads. Is Hulu that useful for an Australian to hook up to? I've used it rarely just to see what it was and it was nothing special.

The Olympics are struggling to contain maverick drones flying around
Apparently Rio is having trouble managing drones hovering around Olympic venues. Even though they've purchased "DroneBlocker" devices, other signal jamming gear and DJI has made the Olympic venues a no fly zone in their software, it's a common sight to see a couple of drones buzzing around, taking video or photos. They've all been pretty innocent so far, but what if one of them was strapped with nuclear weaponised zika virus killer bees? Exactly.

Drone insurance is a thing now
Speaking of drones, there's drone insurance in the USA now. You can fly your drone in 40 US states without worrying about the expenses of crashing or hitting people with your aircraft. Don't take the drone racing though, that's not covered by the insurance. This, combined with the FAA's drone registration program and No Drone Zone signs makes be believe the USA is blanketed in drones? We have neither of those things in Australia.


Migrate your email from Gmail to Fastmail
This guy moved all his email from Gmail to Fastmail. It looked like a bit of a pain in the arse, but it all works fine now and he really likes Fastmail. I like Fastmail too. Yay Fastmail! (They're based in Melbourne too!)

UK nerds resurrect Teletext via the Raspberry Pi
Some British dorks have revived Teletext! Using a Raspberry Pi and an old TV, the VBIT-Pi & raspi-teletext software, you can send a Teletext signal into the composite output of the Pi that works when you use the Teletext buttons on the TV itself. Here's a video of it in action. Absolutely useless, but heartwarming at the same time. By the way, There's an International Teletext Art Festival. Austria still has theirs going on!

Census is tonight and Troy Hunt has a hot take not wrapped in tin foil
Don't forget to do your patriotic duty and complete the Census tonight. If you've heard a lot about the privacy scaremongering going around but don't really understand what the big deal is (like me), Troy Hunt clarifies the situation pretty well. While it's good to be skeptical of the rather stupid bullshit the ABS is saying (i.e: "we've never been hacked, so we will never be hacked"), for most people (not everyone), Troy reckons its a very low grade risk in the scheme of things.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Today's subject line is from Trailerpark, by Blur. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!