Getting Around International Content Restrictions

I was asked by Rachael Bath about how I get around international content restrictions (i.e., location-based content blocking). There are two tools that I typically use. First, I pay about $70/year for a full-featured VPN service called Witopia that allows me to get around content restrictions, as well as providing me with other privacy and security features. Second, for basic location spoofing, I use a great little Chrome extension called Hola. It’s free, works really well, and will do the trick for those looking to access services like Pandora, Hulu, Spotify, etc. where they are not available, or to get better or alternate programming from sites like Netflix (you can access Netflix UK, or US, for instance).

I’ve put together a short video to show you how it works. Hopefully this is helpful. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Stephen Spoonamore on Hacking Voting Machines

This is an interesting interview with Stephen Spoonamore, CEO of Cybrinth, regarding the hackability of Diebold voting machines (or electronic machines in general).

I stress the importance of these points:

    – “There is no system, none, in the world, that cannot be hacked.”
    – “You cannot have secure electronic voting. It doesn’t exist.”
    – “Two graduate students in 3 hours successfully hacked the machine. And once they had completed writing their hack, they then successfully added a 4 line code of self-erasing virus to allow it to propagate across the network. That’s just two guys with two hours who had no interest or motivation in doing it other than scientific interest.”
    – “There are people out there, and there’s a lot of them, who don’t really want to win elections. What they want to do is they want to steal them. They have an enormous incentive for power. They have an enormous incentive for money, And, they have an enormous willingness to go and do it.”
    – “I don’t want to have a society where we’re not sure who won. I want to live in a democracy where there is a valid capacity to audit the entire trail.”

While this may come off as conspiracy theory, I do not believe it is as simple as that. When a democracy relies too heavily on electronic technologies to tabulate the outcome of elections, we must be extremely cautious. And while there has not been the criticism in Canada for voting machines as as there has been in the US, I would suggest all citizens monitor the possible ubiquity of such machines in the years ahead.