In This Issue


Review recommends agency bosses & A-G stripped of Assistance and Access Act powers

The Independent National Security Legislation Monitor has handed down its report on the controversial Assistance and Access Act - the short verdict is yeah, we do kinda need some laws like this so cops can have an easier time investigating the growing number crimes involving technology, but not in such a shitty way that removes our rights. The main recommendation in the review is to remove the power of agency heads (e.g: ASIO, AFP) and the Attorney-General to issue the TANs and TCNs (the notices you pretty much have no choice to comply with or you go to jail), instead giving that quite important power to a new statutory office, the Investigatory Powers Commissioner that's overseen by a retired judge. Will the government do this? I wouldn't get your hopes up.

Canon’s new mirrorless cameras have impressive specs, nice upgrade for EOS 5D fans

Canon has launched new fancy mirrorless cameras - the EOS R5 and R6. As DP Review says, the EOS R5 is a "spiritual (mirrorless) successor to Canon's 5D-series DSLR cameras" with a 45MP full-frame sensor that will record 8K video to internal storage (you'll need to use CFast memory cards for 8K), has a new autofocus system that uses machine learning for human and animal detection, 10-bit HDR photos, wi-fi, Bluetooth and FTP connectivity and heaps of other cool shit. The EOS R6 is a slightly cut down version with a shittier sensor and no 8K video that's also slightly cheaper. R6 comes out late-August and will cost US$2499 body-only. R5 late-July, US$3899. There's also a bunch of new lenses for the RF mount to go with the new cameras.

Almost all consumer-level routers have more holes than a wheel of Swiss cheese

Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Communication has found that "of the 127 home routers tested from seven major manufacturers, nearly all were found to have security flaws, some of them very severe. The problems range from missing security updates to easily decrypted, hard-coded passwords and known vulnerabilities that should have been patched long ago". 46 of the 127 didn't receive a single security update in the past 12 months! They're almost all based on Linux, but ancient versions that are no longer supported and are full of well exploitable bugs. AVM were the least shit (aka FRITZ!Box), with ASUS and Netgear shittier than AVM but not as shit as D-Link, Linksys, TP-Link and Zyxel. The full report is available here.

Not News

Quick and easy repairs of important ventilators kicked in the balls by unnecessary DRM

DRM is rearing it's ugly head once again in the battle to keep ventilators operating during COVID-19 surges. Across the world (mostly the USA) there's techs trying to fix popular Medtronics PB840 ventilators by getting parts from other broken machines to create a single working machine, but due to DRM the parts aren't recognised by the ventilator's software because only Medtronics has the right program to tell the machine to use the new parts. That was until a Polish dude got the Medtronics proprietary software, made his own version of it and released it to hospital in-house techs so they can get as many ventilators in action as possible. Very similar problem farmers have with John Deere products and nerds like us have with Apple products.


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