block text messages

Its called SMS spam, SpaSMS, mobile spamming, and m-spamming.

I was in Amsterdam in Sept. 2010 and I kept getting spam texts:
Leonewd (AIM):-1/2-
Investor Stock Alert! Our pick is up 60% so far today, DO NOT MISS OUT! Get in Fast and Early. For

maryleedwxq (AIM):-1/2-
Hot Penny Stock Alert! AHuge PR Campaign has begun for Fleet Managment, starting

I don’t normally get these messages in the US. I am not sure if this has to do with the carrier I have here or what.

AIM: You have received a txt from an AIM user. To stop AIM TXTs, reply ‘out’ to this msg.

What really sucks about this sort of spam is that you have to open the text message up to stop it. Once you open up the message, you will see something like this at the bottom of the text (Reply 'block' to stop this user). But the way the spam “user” gets around this is to send the same text message from multiple fake user names. The other thing that really sucks is that, depending on your text message service plan, you maybe charged for each message you receive! OUCH!

How do you block spam text messages?
The way the sms text spammers are finding your phones text address is by guessing. They know that the typical address follows this format:
[10-digit wireless number]

[10-digit wireless number]

[10-digit wireless number]
(comprehensive list 1,2)

So they just put all the numbers possible for a given area. This is easy with good software. Its abuse of the text message marketing using bulk text messaging software and/or services. They will typically forward from multiple fake usernames to the same text address. Its like war-texting or brute force marketing.

The good news is that your cell phone service should offer some sort of text-blocking services.

(from pogue nytimes blog)
* AT&T: Log in at Under Preferences, you’ll see the text-blocking and alias options. Here’s also where you can block messages from specific e-mail addresses or Web sites.

* Verizon Wireless: Log in at Under Text Messaging, click Preferences. Click Text Blocking. You’re offered choices to block text messages from e-mail or from the Web. Here again, you can block specific addresses or Web sites. (Here’s where you set up your aliases, too.)

* Sprint: No auto-blocking is available at all, but you can block specific phone numbers and addresses. To get started, log in at On the top navigation bar, click My Online Tools. Under Communication Tools, click Text Messaging. On the Compose a Text Message page, under Text Messaging Options, click Settings & Preferences. In the text box, you can enter a phone number, email address or domain (such as that you want to block.

* T-Mobile: T-Mobile doesn’t yet offer a “block text messages from the Internet” option. You can block all messages sent by e-mail, though, or permit only messages sent to your phone’s e-mail address or alias, or create filters that block text messages containing certain phrases. It’s all waiting when you log into and click Communication Tools.

How to catch hackers on your wireless

Techdar talks about How to catch hackers on your wireless network and how to defend your Wi-Fi from future attacks

There are lots of tools around to help people carry out ARP-related exploits and if a malicious, Wi-Fi enabled neighbour decided to find out more about your network, this could be an effective way to do it. The good news is that there are some defences out there. The bad? They can be costly and don’t always deliver the protection you might expect.

Tools of Choice:

Arp Defender





WIMAX/3G Geek out

I must admit, I’m geeking out over WIMAX. WiMAX stands for the Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. It will allow 70Mb/second upload and download which will allow for some pretty decent prawn video. So you’ll be able to go to youpawn and watch all kinds of prawn. There is an even better technology called 3GPP LTE (Long Term Evolution) on the way with is another improvement on the 3G stuff that is already out and marketed.

What is frustrating is that WiMAX will likely have the same level of control that 3G has. It will be tamed and completely corporate run. I plan on getting the new iPhone on 11 July 2008. After seeing the iPhone upclose I started to feel funny in my underpants. Iphone + 3G should shock my WiMAX arousal into erectile dysfunction.

It’s all about the killer app. If the big dogs pushing WiMAX (Nortel/Alvarion & Sprint/peon) can come up with a device that allows you to bypass XXX ass Comcast, AT&T and other broadband monopolies they will seriously shake up the market. WiMAX, 3G and others should be in the business of creating devices, drivers and software that allow you to network all of your systems from anywhere in the contiguous United States. That would be very cool. But they seems to have serious limitations (at least in the US).

Jun 11, 2008 (Hugin via COMTEX) —-Joint End-to-End WiMAX Solution Will Offer Operators Broader Coverage and More Capacity

TORONTO, ONTARIO and TEL AVIV, ISRAEL–(Marketwire – June 11, 2008) – Nortel(1) (TSX: NT: 9.13, +1.02, +12.57%)(NYSE: NT: 9.13, +1.02, +12.57%) and Alvarion(2)(R: 66.46, -1.77, -2.59%) Ltd. (NASDAQ: ALVR: 7.97, +0.46, +6.12%) entered into a joint strategic WiMAX agreement to create an end-to-end WiMAX solution to meet the needs of the evolving wireless broadband market. The Nortel and Alvarion mobile WiMAX solution is expected to combine industry-leading technologies from both companies to allow operators around the globe – including well-established service providers and new entrants to the wireless market – to simply and efficiently deliver high-speed wireless broadband for a variety of applications, mobile or nomadic, including VoIP, streaming music, and HD video.

The joint solution features the integration of Alvarion’s advanced radio access network technology, which has been proven in over 200 commercial WiMAX deployments, with Nortel’s core network solutions, backhaul solutions, applications such as Nortel’s number one carrier VoIP solution, and Nortel Global Services for WiMAX.. The Nortel and Alvarion WiMAX solution will allow operators to offer high speed wireless Internet access across large areas, including those currently underserved by broadband capabilities. The joint WiMAX solution will also provide the speed and capacity to help operators meet the exploding demand for true mobile broadband.

The ABCs of securing your wireless network


Ars Technica’s original Wireless Security Blackpaper was first published back in 2002, and in the intervening years, it has been a great reference for getting the technical lowdown on different wireless security protocols. As a sequel to the original blackpaper, we wanted to do something a little more basic and practical, because the number of devices with 802.11x support has greatly expanded since 2002. Wireless security is no longer the domain of geeks and system administrators, but is now an issue in the lives of everyday users, from the worker with a home office who wants to keep sensitive files secure to the homemaker who wants to avoid an RIAA lawsuit because the teen next door is a wireless-leeching P2P addict.

read more | digg story

Which Is Faster Wireless Router Or Wired Internet

Wireless Routers vs Wired Router
fig. 1, which is faster wireless router or wired internet

Overview: Routers, switches and hubs (1) (a.ka Internetworking devices) give you access to the Internet (2) via some sort of ISP device (broadband modem, DSL ect) (3). The speed onto the actual Internet depends on the service you have purchased with your local ISP (4). They are the gatekeepers (AT&T, Comcast, Verison, Local ISP ect). This usually creates a bit of a bottleneck because your local area network (LAN) is much faster than your connection to the actual Internet. You actual connection to the Internet is controlled by your ISP. Wired LANs will allow you to get from 100-1000Mb/second, Wireless will get from from 10-250Mb (depending on how far from the wireless router you are and what type you get).

ISPs allow you to go anywhere from 56Kbs – 12Mbs:

Dial-up: 56Kbs – (4 minutes to download 1.7MB file)

DSL: up to 6Mbs – (2 seconds to download 1.7MB file)

Cable: up to 12Mbs – (1 second to download 1.7MB file)

*the math: 1.7 Mega Bytes is 13,600,000 bits (per second) of data divided by n, where n is your speed (i.e. 56K = 56,000 bits per second)
**There is a technology called WiMax Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (802.16e) coming out that will allow wireless to go directly in your home from the ISP at 70Mb/second and that will beat every currently on the market.

If you have a home LAN (more than one computer in your home linked together connected to the Internet), your network is passing data at about 100Mb/second – which is really fast for even really large files. But this is where the Wireless vs. Wired Internet comes in. Don’t confuse your internal network speed with your connection to the Internet (see overview).

Should you go with a wireless or a wired router?
Any wireless router you get will have both options available, so you are better off getting a wireless. The cost isn’t usually that different unless you want a high end wireless which will usually be between $20-$50 more.

Which Switch is Faster, wireless or wired?
It really depends on what kind you get. However, the fastest wired router will beat the pants off of the fastest wireless. Wired routers go up to 100-1000Mb. Of course, I high end wireless can have everything a high end router has (including those super 1000Mb speeds).


China's "WAPI" standard rejected in favor of American 802.11i

Back in March, it was reported that WAPI was rejected by ISO because China refused to disclose some details of the technology. This meant that ISO members weren't able to guarantee that WAPI did not allow backdoor access to encrypted material. — C|net

The American 802.11i encryption is backed by Intel. China's wireless standard is now claiming that it is a conspiracy from the U.S. engineer's group

I think the Chinese have a ways to go on engineering at the level of quality that the Western world has set.  Just look at the safety rating that the JiangLing Landwind, China's first car to be sold in Europe.  It received a ZERO in safety, breaking the record for the lowest score ever by European saftey standards. 

I think the Chinese will eventually fine tune the process and beable to compete and even beat the European, American, and  Japanese companies but its just began to get into the real thick of capitolism, so like the JiangLing's safty feature (or lack there of) some of their standards and practices are stuck in the 20th century.  When this giant wakes up completely, they'll be no stopping them.  The spark and freedom of innovation at Western standards is all they need and then it will be all over.  They'll be to business and commerce what a team of Micheal Jordan clones would be to the NBA.  I suspect the same thing of India.  Its not so much brain power and work ethic (or which they have loads) as it is numbers of people.

Wardriving Tools

Great site that lists the best software for finding and decrypting wireless AP's.

Morality of Wardriving tools.
I do not personally wardrive but I think it is a great way to do an
assessment of the security of your area.  I know some people
wardrive just to find a free spot to surf.  This is the equivalent
to walking up to every door in your neigborhood and twisting the knob
to see if the door is unlocked.  Then walking in and watching
cable on their couch and eating popcorn.  It is not right. 
And I can not pretend that it is.

Privacy of Publically dispensed Wireless Data
But at the sametime, having a wireless service and NO security is like
having a house with no walls.  How can there be a crime or theft
of data and service when the data and service is spilling out freely
into the air like a public water fountain. 

Paying for Service and then serving it to the Public
I pay for the water service at my house so if anyone else walks into my
yard to use my water hose they are wrong.  But if I put that same
hose into a nearby public park and turn it on, how guilty is anyone
going to feel about taking a sip or splashing their face with it?

So if you feel strongly about people NOT wardriving and not stealing
service than do something about it.  I think that wardriving will
dry up when the masses finally get wind of wireless security, until
then “Surfs up.”

read more | digg story

Mobile viruses could get nasty fast

Dan Nystedt's article on PCWorld tells of the good, the bad and the
ugly about connecting mobile systems to home system to the Internet:

“The dream of a connected world where
PCs and mobile phones can communicate with the digital home and other
devices is supposed to make life easier. But it could instead make life
far more dangerous if malware developers have their way.”

And my favorite part:

“For example, mobile phone services in some countries let people see
what's going on inside their house via a Web cam connected to motion
sensors, snapping a picture and sending to the homeowner if anything
seems awry. But a hacker could use that same Web cam to see if anyone's
home, and perhaps break in. Or invade people's privacy by taking
pictures of what's going on in the house. And could a marauder hack
into a driver's mobile phone use it to shut down certain automobile
systems, like the brakes?”

The article goes on to mention something very interesting, 3G phones
are online all the time.  This feature make them HIGHLY
vulnerable to attacks.  I won't be surprise if one day soon these
phones will have to have little built in mobile firewalls.

“F-Secure, another vendor of antivirus tools,
says the current total count of known mobile malware stands at 87, up
from less than 10 early last year. A total of 82 of those viruses were
written to run on the Symbian series 60 operating system.”

Symbian is a very popular mobile phone operating system.  Much
like the Microsoft OSes and apps, Symbians popularity makes it a huge,
juicy target to mobile phone black hats.

read more | digg story

Shoot-out: Google's new VPN beta kicks the living Hell out of the EFF's Tor

Speed test: Tor, sponsored by the EFF, and Google's new beta VPN are both aimed at those of us who want to protect our privacy and rights online. While Google claims that its VPN program is to boost security on wireless networks, it can also be used with wired internet connections to add some more security for the rest of us.

Once again Google uses incredible engineering to create something that may just become number one yet another area of IT.  Google Adsense is doing so well that Yahoo and MSN are testing out similar content relevant ad scripts. 

Tor looks like it is much more secure that the Google implementation.  I mean VPN is pretty secure but Tor is ridiculously secure in that it uses software that uses each system it connects to as a seperate VPN which encrypts traffic at each point.  This makes the traffic very difficult (if not impossible to track) as EFF stores none of that data.  Google will hold the traffic data but claims that the data will be “personally unidentifiable” which means it can not be tracked back to any one person (at least that is how I understand it).

But I wonder what this VPN wireless project could mean in terms of practical use.  Will Google deploy in at Starbucks and Borders Book stores around the world?

read more | digg story

IEEE 802.20: Mobile Broadband Wireless Access (MBWA) vs. WiMax

802.20 was approved by the IEEE in
2002.  The Mobile Broadband Wireless Access Working Group has been
working on the project.

This 802.20 is a standard for “air interface” efficient packets that
will be affordable and across multiple vendors.  802.20 will
operate at 3.5 GHz at 1 Mbps. 

802.20 will allow you to cheaply use the Internet while on the
road.  This would be really great for long trips.  I can't
tell you how many times I've on the road wishing I had access to
Mapquest or Yahoo Maps.

802.20 WG Documents:

How is this different from WiMax?
Although WiMax (802.16e) is similar to MBWA in that it focuses on air
interfaces, WiMax will operate in the 2-6 GHz ranges versus MBWA's
3.5.  WiMax will cover a smaller area than 802.20.

WiMax Forum


1 2