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Thread: The rainzhang affair

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  1. #1
    Senior Member registered user
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    Columbia, Maryland USA
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    1,631

    The rainzhang affair

    .
    This site was really hacked for about half-a-day (early 3/26).
    Kudos to the sysop(s) that turned this around so well.

    Do we users need to correct any of our procedures
    so as not to invite future incursions as what we saw?

  2. #2
    Moderator Moderator
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    Asheville, NC, USA
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    No prob! It became obvious after a few minutes that this was a relatively large instance of true abuse, so I got cracking. Ultimately, I banned him permanently and deleted all his posts. I suspect there will a deeper inquiry into how he got access, but it was unusual, at least. It was apparently LOTS worse in the past.

    The one suggestion I can think of is to send a Private Message to all the moderators (Clinton, HarryKuhn, myself, and I'm sure there are others.) It was only because he replied to a post in a thread to which I was subscribed that I became alerted. A PM is rare, and comes into my email so it's probably going to be noticed sooner, especially if no replies to threads I've subscribed to are there.

    Cheers!

    Krishna

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Hunh ? I noticed this twelve hours ago but I live an in unconventional timezone. I logged in and clicked on the 'Contact Us' at the bottom of the page and sent a message. Where did it go ?

    Waddayoumean your are sure there are other moderators ? If you don't know who they are, how are we to know who they are ?

    @dinosoep

    Easy lesson learnt the hard way.

    rainzhang, whoever he was, logged it sometime goodness knows when and checked the 'remember me' check box. It's so 'handy'. So he doesn't have to log in any more and neither does his kid sister or a the nasty script that ran when she clicked on some interesting looking web-link promising handbags, anti-spot and anti-ageing cream and boys a-go-go. If you don't run NoScript then nasty scripts get to run before you find out where the link has taken you. If you are a web type (I'm not), it's a piece a cake to write a java script (or XUL script) to run through your history looking for all url's with the word forum in them (for example) and add a post to each one.

    @ All

    1. Always run NoScript in your browser and if your browser won't run NoScript, get a browser that does.

    2. If you've registered with a web-site then always log and type in your password. Security is, by definition, not 'handy'.

    3. Use a password generator like PasswordMaker so that every site has a different password.

    @ Moderators and such

    1. Disable the remember me cookie ?

    2. I've seen sites with a 'report this page button'.

    @ Finally

    I've seen sites with so much grafitti that I just don't bother going to them any more even if they are the only hit in Google.

  4. #4
    Moderator Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forester View Post
    Hunh ? I noticed this twelve hours ago but I live an in unconventional timezone. I logged in and clicked on the 'Contact Us' at the bottom of the page and sent a message. Where did it go ?
    Not sure. It didn't get to me, but it probably went to those on the highest levels of control on the board - but they are often busy with other things, which is why they invited me to help out.
    Waddayoumean your are sure there are other moderators ? If you don't know who they are, how are we to know who they are ?
    I meant I only know the few whom I've interacted with, and I'm not sure who's active right now. All of us are identified in our posts with the tag Moderator.

    Your point is well taken. It would be good if there were a mechanism to send out an alert to ALL the mods, so someone who's not preoccupied (e.g. asleep, out of town, etc.) can get to it more quickly.
    @dinosoep

    Easy lesson learnt the hard way.

    rainzhang, whoever he was, logged it sometime goodness knows when and checked the 'remember me' check box. It's so 'handy'. So he doesn't have to log in any more and neither does his kid sister or a the nasty script that ran when she clicked on some interesting looking web-link promising handbags, anti-spot and anti-ageing cream and boys a-go-go. If you don't run NoScript then nasty scripts get to run before you find out where the link has taken you. If you are a web type (I'm not), it's a piece a cake to write a java script (or XUL script) to run through your history looking for all url's with the word forum in them (for example) and add a post to each one.
    Personally, I can't stand NoScript - It's removed immediately on any system I use. Since Chrome is my main browser, it's not such an issue, and there are several worthy extensions that can be used to prevent trouble.
    @ All

    1. Always run NoScript in your browser and if your browser won't run NoScript, get a browser that does.

    2. If you've registered with a web-site then always log and type in your password. Security is, by definition, not 'handy'.

    3. Use a password generator like PasswordMaker so that every site has a different password.
    Personally, I use a single password (on my knoppix-data.aes) - if somebody powers up my system when I'm not around, they can log onto the wifi network (they should know the passphrase - my family members do) and browse with "vanilla" Knoppix, sans my saved passwords and other mods.
    @ Moderators and such

    1. Disable the remember me cookie ?

    2. I've seen sites with a 'report this page button'.

    @ Finally

    I've seen sites with so much grafitti that I just don't bother going to them any more even if they are the only hit in Google.
    We shall endeavor to out-live them.

    Cheers!
    Krishna
    p.s. This isn't really news, so I moved it to the Lounge.
    Last edited by krishna.murphy; 03-26-2011 at 08:31 PM. Reason: Moved thread

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Yeah forester, I'd have to agree noscript comes in handy here.
    But noscript can't protect you from everything. The user has to be cautious too

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