Locksmiths in New York

Bruce Schneier has a write up about lock smiths in New York spamming Google Maps with multiple fake business addresses. The result is a single locksmith showing up in every neighborhood in the city regardless of the location of their actual office.

I remember this happening in Somerville when we moved in a couple years ago, so I don’t think this is isolated to New York City. What other businesses would find this practice useful? Taxis, courier service… There’s got to be others.

Locksmiths in New York

Does Spam Make Any Money?

3 spam posts in one weekend? Why not?! I’ve often wondered abut the economics of email spam. Clearly it was making someone money, otherwise we wouldn’t get nearly so much. So how much does spam make? Via Schneier, the answer is not much, but enough.

Spam is all about economics. When sending junk mail costs a dollar in paper, list rental, and postage, a marketer needs a reasonable conversion rate to make the campaign worthwhile. When sending junk mail is almost free, a one in ten million conversion rate is acceptable.

Does Spam Make Any Money?

Bruce Schneier vs Kip Hawley

Bruce Schneier helps a writer for The Atlantic Punk the TSA (I’m sure you saw this over the last couple weeks if you read the internet at all). Airport security is, after all, so much ‘security theater’.
Head of the TSA, Kip Hawley, responds to article.
Schneier responds.
Hawley responds again.

While I admire Kip Hawley’s somewhat transparent (somewhat, because how transparent do you want a security chief to be?) approach to this dialogue I agree with Schneier’s dismissal of the answers. Again, though, it is refreshing for a Bush appointee to at least make an attempt at discussion. Most government appointees probably wouldn’t respond to this type of thing, even if Schneier is the preeminent security expert around.

Bruce Schneier vs Kip Hawley