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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Knights Who Say "Nay"

Given the glut of superhero movies I would like to suggest a way for a real geek to become a superhero. You've got Peter Parker who becomes Spiderman, Clark Kent who becomes Superman, The Fantastic Four, Bruce Wayne who slips into the Batsuit, Darkman, The Daredevil and the Incredible Hulk, just to name a few.

All you need to be a super hero is a superpower and some assorted evil villains.

Let me suggest a super power that is being misused by evil villains the world over. There are thousands of bright misguided folks in cyberspace who are using their considerable intellects to create viruses, adware, hijackers and programs to steal your identity, your money and your time. These brilliant villains destroy peoples lives, their websites and their credit and force us to load down our computers with so much anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-adware and security software that our computers lumber through their tasks like knights in plate armour.

Where are the brilliant hackers who devote themselves to taking the fight back to the bad guys? Where is the cyber equivalent to Spider Man? Where are our cyber knights in armour, protecting the weak and downtrodden and gullible and unprotected? Where are the heros who say "Nay" to the cyber villains that stalk the Internet and cost us all millions in lost revenue, credit theft and lost time.

I once spent $180 to have a computer at work stripped down and reformatted and lost most of the material on the computer in the process because of a "toolbar" one of my staff was tricked into installing. I spent most of two days trying to get rid of it, but it kept reloading itself every time I rebooted. I never could find the buried file that kept reloading the deleted software. I went to the software's home website and found the home address of the software company. I went to visit them next time I was in Austin, Texas. By the timer I got there, the office was empty and looked like someone had taken a bat to the place - evidently someone who had a similar idea to mine. I hope they were there when he found the office.

Wouldn't it be great if there was a Cyber Justice League of America? A bunch of brilliant hackers on the side of the little guy. How about they track down the sites which upload hijack software and shut them down for a change? Crash their servers, hijack their software, steal their credit cards. Why couldn't our government do that? Half the time these sites are based in foreign countries. Let's put together a cyber-Delta Force or Hacker Seal Team and go after the porn sites and bogus companies that download viruses, hijacker programs or otherwise mess up people's computers. Pound the Internet cafes that serve as home base for the Nigerian e-mail scammers. Clobber terrorist sites! Lock up spammers. That would certainly be something worth doing.

Now those guys would be my kind of superheros!!!

Just one man's opinion...

Tom King

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