05-07 Contents: Fraud, Forensics, BugMeNot, Remote desktop, Gizmo, Euro news, Spreadsheet book, course, conferences
ISSN 1649-2374 This issue online at http://www.sysmod.com/praxis/prax0507.htm [Previous] [Index] [Next]
|Systems Modelling Ltd.: Managing reality in Information Systems - strategies for success|
IN THIS ISSUE
|1) Risk & Security
40M Credit cards security breached
Indian call centre fraud
Forensic Acquisition Utilities
Bug Me Not
Passwords stronger than pAsSwOrD or 0qww294e
|2) Tech stuff
PC remote control, remote desktop access
A telephone gizmo
UK Govt factsheets "the euro: it's your business" updated
What the French and Dutch really think about the European Constitution
European Spreadsheet Risks Interest Group conference
Spreadsheet Check and Control book
Excel User Conference Sep 16-17, Fort Worth, Dallas, Texas
ScanXLS spreadsheet catalogue utility
|5) Off Topic
Eudora time machine broken
"Project Awry": a list of all the risks
|19 Web links in this newsletter
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If you're in reach of Dallas this September, read this carefully!
"Indian call centres in security scare, as Sun reporter buys bank data"
OUT-LAW June 23
London police have launched an investigation after an undercover reporter for The Sun newspaper managed to purchase the bank details of 1,000 British customers from a computer expert claiming to have corrupt call centre contacts in India. The information, which includes addresses, passwords, phone numbers and driving licence and passport details, was bought for about £3 per customer. Financial institutions such as Barclays, Lloyds TSB, the Nationwide and HSBC were affected.
http://users.erols.com/gmgarner/forensics/ George M. Garner
This is a collection of utilities and libraries intended for forensic or forensic-related investigative use in a modern Microsoft Windows environment. The components in this collection are intended to permit the investigator to sterilize media for forensic duplication, discover where logical volume information is located and to collect the evidence from a running system while at the same time guaranteeing data integrity (e.g. with a cryptographic checksum) and while minimizing changes to the subject system.
http://www.bugmenot.com provides ready-made login names and passwords for all those irritating newspaper sites that carry a story you want to read but want you to sign up so you can get special offers from local businesses in Punxatawney.
Fred Langa's collection of free and low-cost tools and tips to create and use passwords that really *are* strong and hard to crack, and yet also are easy to use and remember. http://www.informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=164303537 .
I've been trying out a few ways of doing this recently. I got used to PcAnywhere which I've used since Carbon Copy faded from the scene, but I decided it was time to try out other ways of connecting over the internet. They all work best with a broadband connection, but even 128K (dual-channel) ISDN is satisfactory if you're not in a hurry.
This works when you want to control a desktop remotely and take over control completely. It is included as part of Windows XP, and to access an XP desktop from earlier versions of Windows you can download MSRDPCLI.EXE free from Microsoft.com. It works but it looks slower than the alternatives I have tried. http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=80111F21-D48D-426E-96C2-08AA2BD23A49
This allows control of a desktop from any other computer, not just a Windows PC. It looks faster than Windows RDP. It is free for basic personal use with only password security. Commercial versions are available with encryption for greater security. Download from www.RealVNC.com
This runs as an ActiveX control in a browser, so you can use any browser anywhere in the world to access your PC, as long as that PC is connected to the Internet. A free version is available from www.logmein.com
Project Gizmo Challenges Skype 5th July 2005 by Tony Lock (Bloor Research)
"So successful has Skype been that the company name has already started to transform into a verb — "To Skype". However, Skype's current pre-eminent position is now facing a serious challenge with the launch of Project Gizmo. By making a free download of its Beta release software, users can make free telephone calls to others on the Gizmo system utilising whatever IP connection they have in place, typically broadband. "
Skype was first and have become accepted, so they'll be hard to dislodge. But Skype does not work well for me over 128K ISDN, so I'll check out Gizmo too. http://www.gizmoproject.com
http://sysmod.com/az.php?a=0201192462&b=SW Eng Mgmt Principles of Software Engineering Management, Tom Gilb, Susannah Finzi (1988) It explains the critical success factors for software, and introduces methods using results-oriented quality and resource metrics. It shows in detail how the methods can improve productivity, reliability, estimation, deadline pressure, and motivation. It concludes with a set of 'Software Engineering Templates'.
The EU Public Opinion Analysis team have just published new Flash
Eurobarometer post-referendum surveys in France and in the Netherlands. For more
The sixth annual Eusprig conference on July 7-8, 2005 at University of Greenwich, London, is on "Managing spreadsheets in the light of Sarbanes Oxley". It is going to be the biggest and best event yet! The conference dinner is completely booked out, and the final conference-only places are rapidly filling, after some coverage in the UK Telegraph newspaper. I will present a workshop on techniques to check and control spreadsheets on Wed 6 July from 16:00 to 17:30.
My new book will contain 47 key skills in the design, test, and checking of spreadsheets. Ciaran Walsh, senior finance specialist, Irish Management Institute said "It is excellent. I am embarrassed when I think of the shortcuts I generally take with spreadsheets and I have often paid the price. I think it will become, and it should be, required reading for all young trainee accountants." Check out www.SystemsPublishing.com for news.
My handy spreadsheet to collect inventory data on spreadsheet files & links is selling steadily. It scans any given directory and below and obtains a list of all the .XLS files. You then select some or all of these, and it opens each one in turn read-only and reports on some file properties, attributes, the presence of unusual features or settings that may represent a risk or are prone to human error, Excel's error checking summaries, a list of other workbooks that it depends on through links, and a scoring on how 'problematic' it might be. SCANXLS can also compare two workbooks to check whether their formulas and/or values are identical. For more, see
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Thank you! Patrick O'Beirne, Editor
An infinite vision vortex of risks?
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"Praxis" means model or example, from the Greek verb "to do". The name is chosen to reflect our focus on practical solutions to IS problems, avoiding hype. If you like acronyms, think of it as "Patrick's reports and analysis across Information Systems".
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