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Category / Personal Finances

Supported Projects 6 November, 2011 at 6:07 am

I’ve supported a few ‘crowd-funded’ projects in recent months, including the production of a DVD of visuals by the Joshua Light Show in New York (who provided visuals for famous music acts in the 1960s), The Sensorium Project (an 11.11m dome for video/interactive/psychedelic art to travel festivals here in Australia), and helping Professor Kliq (a musician / producer in Chicago) obtain his music composition degree.

The Sensorium Project has not yet reached its funding target and has just 5 days to go; I have just doubled my pledge and encourage any Australian VJs and visualists to contribute if they can.

See the new Supported Projects page for more links, videos, etc.

-spxl

h4x0r3d 16 July, 2008 at 10:09 am

Someone’s been playing games with me, and I’m a little concerned about how far it’s gone. I had to cancel my credit card a month or so ago after noticing a suspicious transaction to an online gaming site – contacting the site operator by phone I discovered that the account associated with my credit card number was under investigation, and was given the recommendation to contact my bank and the police. Oh, joy. It’s amazing how inconvenient things start to become when you don’t have access to things like your credit card – going to Spain later that week was virtually out of the question; I couldn’t even reserve a bed in a hostel on the net or over the phone. Sheesh!

I don’t know how someone managed to get hold of my details – it could have been from using my card in a shop, but I think I booked a bus ticket to Bristol using my credit card from an internet cafe in London, and maybe there was a keylogger installed or some other dodgy happening there, and that seems the most likely place (to me). My bank almost insisted that it was probably an unconnected someone out in the wild trying random credit card numbers… the fact that I was in London and the online gaming company was London based seems like too much of a coincidence to me.

In any case… however it happened, it happened. What I noticed today was something different – an index.html page on my webserver had mysteriously been replaced by a .phtml page, with an identical appearance but also a chunk of PHP script that had references to some dodgy-sounding porn domain. What the bleep is that about? And how did it happen? I immediately reverted the page to a regular .html file and removed the script, and sent a support query to my web host letting them know what I had discovered. I also asked if they could audit my logins and/or suggest an exploit in some installed PHP applications that might have been used. They, of course, recommended that I change my administration and FTP passwords (good idea!), and I while looking for the page to change the password noticed that there is a section in the administration panel that displays the IP addresses of your recent logins. All the recent logins were the same (I’ve been logging in from a hotspot in my hostel) except for one: an IP address belonging to a server in America: 209.67.214.58 (mariolet.servidorlatinoamerica.com). I wrote to servidorlatinoamerica.com and they replied:

thank you for your communication.
the server with hostname mariolet.servidorlatinoamerica.com
is not active, is a hostname that is not within our network server
However, find out the reason for your report

again, thanks for communicating and thank you communicate if you have more information on this subject

Si tienes alguna duda, solo háganoslo saber y responderemos en el mas breve tiempo.

Sin otro particular, quedamos a la espera de vuestra noticias y aprovechamos la ocasión para saludarlos.

Att

Strange. Maybe there’s a hacker inside their network? Maybe someone is able to fake their IP? Maybe the information from the administration panel is wrong?… Whatever the case, it’s bad. Bad I say! Bad in a way that is making me grumpy because it looks like I’m going to have to change ALL my passwords from accounts that I have used recently, and that is more than a little inconvenient.

A note to friends and contacts: if you see some strange, unexpected email, especially with some sort of unusual attachment, bin it. I don’t generally send programs and such – it just doesn’t make sense. Practice good email hygiene!

-G.