The web server on which this site’s files are hosted is set up to monitor intrusion attempts and to take various actions based on said attempts.
I’ve toyed around with computers and the Internet long enough to expect a fairly constant stream of bad bots and automated hack attempts. It’s nothing personal – automated programs often coming from servers in such lands as China, Korea, Russia or Denmark are constantly out there probing *everyone’s* servers for weaknesses. It’s nothing good, but it is reality and all one can do about it is to make sure one’s server is fairly secure.
While my server logs are full of miscreants on a 24-hour basis, I “only” average one or two actual intrusion attempts per day – attempts to log in to various services on my server (email, ftp or the back-end of one of my or my customers’ web sites) by a person or automated program masquerading as a legitimate user.
So it was funny to see the change in server traffic after having spent the past couple of days commenting upon the fallout from revelations by one Edward Snowden, an NSA affiliate who leaked information to The Guardian and Washington Post newspapers showing the NSA has essentially been vacuuming up the entire American citizenry’s mobile phone call details and quite possibly perusing their email, Facebook postings and web usage as well.
The gist of my postings on the subject is that I think the spooks have committed the most extensive violation of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution that I’ve been aware of during my 60-plus years, and two presidents and a large contingent of congressional representatives have played major parts in this abuse, too.
So the funny thing is that, just so far today, there have been 10 intrusion attempts to break into my email server. None of these attempts have come from China. All 10 have come from computer servers in the United States, most from business addresses. Mere coincidence, I am totally sure.
Meanwhile, a new organization made up of a wide swath of organizations, businesses and individuals popped up yesterday and has thus far collected more than 64,000 signatures on a petition demanding that Congress:
→ Enact reform to Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, the state secrets privilege, and the FISA Amendments Act to make clear that blanket surveillance of the Internet activity and phone records of any person residing in the U.S. is prohibited by law and that violations can be reviewed in adversarial proceedings before a public court;
→ Create a special committee to investigate, report, and reveal to the public the extent of this domestic spying. This committee should create specific recommendations for legal and regulatory reform to end unconstitutional surveillance;
→ Hold accountable those public officials who are found to be responsible for this unconstitutional surveillance.
I was happy to add my name to the petition, alongside the American Library Association, the Freedom of the Press Foundation, Mozilla and all the rest. If you’re concerned about our eroding constitutional rights as I am, you can add your name to the petition to, right here.