• 81 results
  • 1
  • 2
#1 Posted by AMyggen (3066 posts) -
#2 Edited by Jeust (10655 posts) -
#3 Posted by Pie (7099 posts) -

Yeah just read about this on the guardian.

"Meanwhile, the FBI, CIA, and the Defense Humint Service were all running human intelligence operations – undercover agents – within the virtual world of Second Life. In fact, so crowded were the virtual worlds with staff from the different agencies, that there was a need to try to "deconflict" their efforts – or, in other words, to make sure each agency wasn't just duplicating what the others were doing." That's probably the highlight

Dumb stuff

#4 Edited by spraynardtatum (2972 posts) -

I think it's time we take another look at that Patriot Act. Maybe cut a couple things out.....there seems to be a huge amount of superfluous data collection going on. My main issue is that all of this is legal and it would be nearly impossible to argue that it isn't. Not that the Patriot Act started all of this but it sure has helped streamline the mass collection.

Games “are built and operated by companies looking to make money, so the players’ identity and activity is tracked,” said Peter W. Singer of the Brookings Institution, an author of “Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know.” “For terror groups looking to keep their communications secret, there are far more effective and easier ways to do so than putting on a troll avatar.”

I agree that there are better ways for terrorists to communicate but obviously the NSA and CIA don't care. This is happening and probably not just by the US government. I really want the Terms and Conditions Agreements we sign with every new online service to change to better protect us from this stuff. This is 2013 and apparently somewhere down the line it was decided that if normal people want to use the internet they have to give away all their personal information to whomever is asking and there isn't really anything that can be done.

#5 Posted by White (1357 posts) -

If the terrorists were smart they wouldn't use mainstream games like WoW and Second Life. They would use really obscure MMO RPGs.

#7 Edited by believer258 (11914 posts) -

This is quite possibly the best way to waste time at work ever.

"Boss, you see that guy who looks like a dog? Yeah, I'm gonna go hound him for information on the terrorist activities in this Second Life game".

I can't honestly accept that this was anything but an idea made so that people could completely slack off at work. And it's even so bad that both organizations have to make sure that they don't have too many people doing it.

#8 Posted by Pie (7099 posts) -

@white: maybe that's how the obscure ones are able to survive. Nearly everybody playing them is either a terrorist or an undercover agent

#9 Posted by BIGJEFFREY (5064 posts) -

This terrorist is playing counter strike.

Online
#10 Posted by BrickRoad (702 posts) -

God damn it I did not need the NSA knowing about my ill gotten Spread Needle +15.

#11 Edited by BabyChooChoo (4523 posts) -

@brickroad said:

God damn it I did not need the NSA knowing about my ill gotten Spread Needle +15.

#12 Posted by Grixxel (766 posts) -

Man ...

Snake has awesome hair.

#13 Edited by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

@pie said:

@white: maybe that's how the obscure ones are able to survive. Nearly everybody playing them is either a terrorist or an undercover agent

You know this makes for a great inception/mmo concept. The whole goal of the game is pretending to be a guy playing a woman offering to strip for money (aka a normal mmo player) while your opponent tries to prove your are actually a terrorist.

#14 Posted by Xeiphyer (5604 posts) -

The thing I don't get is... Even if terrorists were using WoW and Second Life to communicate, they definitely wouldn't be talking about it in public chat right? I'm sure they're using private chat options anyways.

Now, clearly the agencies don't have access to the private chat logs otherwise they wouldn't need agents in game running around reading people's public chats. Instead they would just get a textlog of everyone's private chats and parse it with a program.

So... I'd love to know what data they are actually getting from this. I've never seen any terrorists sitting around in WoW talking about their plans, and I imagine its the same case in Second Life. Probably just a lot of dildo talk.

#15 Posted by Pie (7099 posts) -

@xeiphyer: no no no, they are infiltrating the special terrorist guilds and getting direct access to the private logs that way. Also the guardian implied they had access to private conversations on xbox live so pfffttttt I don't know

#16 Posted by Sammo21 (3280 posts) -

In the end they played World of Warcraft, so they all lost anyway.

#17 Posted by MarkM (295 posts) -

OKAY FINE I BOUGHT WOW GOLD ONE TIME BECAUSE I DIDNT WANNA GRIND FOR A MOUNT!

#18 Edited by White (1357 posts) -

Imagine the scandal if one of the biggest EVE online Corporations is actually a terrorist cell. Say, Goon Squad.

It's all legal if it's in the game right? It's within the ToS.

#19 Edited by Tesla (1923 posts) -

But don't worry about that camera with built in microphone and facial recognition sitting in your living room. We're all still positive, after reading this article, that using the Kinect to spy on people is still conspiracy theory.

#20 Posted by Tennmuerti (8104 posts) -

@markm said:

OKAY FINE I BOUGHT WOW GOLD ONE TIME BECAUSE I DIDNT WANNA GRIND FOR A MOUNT!

Me too buddy, me too :(

#21 Edited by ILikePopCans (753 posts) -

OH NOOOO THE NSA IS SPYING ON US GAMERS WHAT WILL WE EVER DO I KNOW I WILL CALL JEFF GERSTMANN'S GOOGLE NUMBER AND LET HIM KNOW WHILE DRIVING AND LISTENING TO JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE.

#22 Posted by spraynardtatum (2972 posts) -

Everyone enjoy your Kinects and Playstation Eyes!

#23 Posted by NegativeCero (3003 posts) -

I think the general feeling on the NSA overstepping their bounds at this point is one of why bother. I mean they're gonna do it regardless of having been caught. I don't even think that people making a big effort to get it repealed would have any effect because people in the government seem to think that saying the word "terrorism" justifies all this. It's depressing. That said, I wonder how many people have changed their online habits since Snowden outed the government -- i.e. encrypted emails or anything similar.

I hope privacy becomes a major issue in the coming years and the next elections.

#24 Edited by Pie (7099 posts) -

I hope they discuss this on the bombcast

#25 Posted by spraynardtatum (2972 posts) -

@pie said:

I hope they discuss this on the bombcast

Me too

#26 Posted by alwaysbebombing (1588 posts) -

I just don't know how much I believe anymore. I can't blindly accept what the Internet tells me about NSA spying programs because, it's the Internet. I recommend taking everything with a grain of salt.

#27 Posted by cloudymusic (1118 posts) -

@spraynardtatum said:

Everyone enjoy your Kinects and Playstation Eyes!

The good news is that if a console really is "constantly watching" us and sending voice and/or audio data up to the internet, it'd be extremely easy to notice the heavy volume of phone-home traffic via routine packet monitoring. That is, the internet will have discovered it almost immediately, and it'd be on the front page of Reddit within hours.

#28 Posted by Jeust (10655 posts) -

I think the general feeling on the NSA overstepping their bounds at this point is one of why bother. I mean they're gonna do it regardless of having been caught. I don't even think that people making a big effort to get it repealed would have any effect because people in the government seem to think that saying the word "terrorism" justifies all this. It's depressing. That said, I wonder how many people have changed their online habits since Snowden outed the government -- i.e. encrypted emails or anything similar.

I hope privacy becomes a major issue in the coming years and the next elections.

Encryptions deemed too strong were banned by the US.

#29 Edited by I_Stay_Puft (3401 posts) -

They knew and still didn't stop that illegal orc slave trading? WTF government.

#30 Posted by MildMolasses (3221 posts) -

They knew and still didn't stop that illegal orc slave trading? WTF government.

They were in on it all along

#31 Edited by slyspider (1233 posts) -

No wonder we are in so much debt, they have been paying all those 15$ a month fees!

#32 Posted by cannedstingray (393 posts) -

I wonder if WOW and Second Life would really be the MMO's that unsavory types would choose to conduct operations. On one hand I can see the appeal of going where there is the most other players to have the opportunity to be a smaller needle in a large haystack, but those are also the games that practically everybody in the world have heard about.

I wonder if it would make more sense for those types to go somewhere like secret world or rift, or any number of lesser known to the general population MMO's that still have a fairly robust player count so as to stay off the grid a little more..

I guess what I'm getting at is, I don't necessarily have a big problem with members of the NSA playing online games depending on how they conduct themselves while there. But if they really feel like that is where these "terrorist" groups are doing dirt, I would think they should have "agents" monitoring more than just a couple VERY well known games.

#33 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -

Man, remember in 2007 when that one guy said he was going to repeal the Patriot Act stop civilian surveillance and then he got power and instead of doing that he expanded civilian surveillance and well, the Patriot Act is still right there. Too bad about that.

At what point should we just forget about universal representation and just start renaming all the lobbies as houses of nobility, because that's a more accurate depiction of how business is done in America. The House of Energy, led by the aging Lord Exxon, the house sigil is a big derrick, who just dealt with a peasant rebellion caused by the treatment of the landed knight BP. The House of Tobacco. The House of Pharma.

#34 Posted by MildMolasses (3221 posts) -

Man, remember in 2007 when that one guy said he was going to repeal the Patriot Act stop civilian surveillance and then he got power and instead of doing that he expanded civilian surveillance and well, the Patriot Act is still right there. Too bad about that.

At what point should we just forget about universal representation and just start renaming all the lobbies as houses of nobility, because that's a more accurate depiction of how business is done in America. The House of Energy, led by the aging Lord Exxon, the house sigil is a big derrick, who just dealt with a peasant rebellion caused by the treatment of the landed knight BP. The House of Tobacco. The House of Pharma.

Any high-ranking politician who says they are going to change things to protect the privacy of the citizens is either delusional or a complete liar. None of you matter, and by the way, you get a shitty health care "solution" because we have to keep spending money on wars and our ability to more awesomely fight wars

#35 Edited by Oldirtybearon (4816 posts) -

Man, remember in 2007 when that one guy said he was going to repeal the Patriot Act stop civilian surveillance and then he got power and instead of doing that he expanded civilian surveillance and well, the Patriot Act is still right there. Too bad about that.

At what point should we just forget about universal representation and just start renaming all the lobbies as houses of nobility, because that's a more accurate depiction of how business is done in America. The House of Energy, led by the aging Lord Exxon, the house sigil is a big derrick, who just dealt with a peasant rebellion caused by the treatment of the landed knight BP. The House of Tobacco. The House of Pharma.

I'm laughing but then I remember this is how it is.

All I can say is thank Christ I'm not American. I probably would have tried to bomb congress by now.

#36 Edited by Ben_H (3361 posts) -

Blizzard should have this playing whenever you log into WoW for the next few days, just as a joke.

I would say that too for Second Life but it is probably already happening, after they finish listening to some weird obscure house song.

#37 Posted by Jacktrote (58 posts) -

Since when is there a popular online game called Second Life and why haven't I ever heard of it?

#38 Posted by CatsAkimbo (626 posts) -

@jacktrote: The guardian article notes that "In reality, Second Life's surreal and uneven virtual world failed to attract or maintain the promised mass-audience, and attention (and its user base) waned, though the game lives on."

What's interesting to me is this part about "Special Forces 2":

The agencies had other concerns about games, beyond their potential use by terrorists to communicate. Much like the pressure groups that worry about the effect of computer games on the minds of children, the NSA expressed concerns that games could be used to "reinforce prejudices and cultural stereotypes", noting that Hezbollah had produced a game called Special Forces 2.

According to the document, Hezbollah's "press section acknowledges [the game] is used for recruitment and training", serving as a "radicalising medium" with the ultimate goal of becoming a "suicide martyr". Despite the game's disturbing connotations, the "fun factor" of the game cannot be discounted, it states. As Special Forces 2 retails for $10, it concludes, the game also serves to "fund terrorist operations".

Hezbollah is not, however, the only organisation to have considered using games for recruiting. As the NSA document acknowledges: they got the idea from the US army.

"America's Army is a US army-produced game that is free [to] download from its recruitment page," says the NSA, noting the game is "acknowledged to be so good at this the army no longer needs to use it for recruitment, they use it for training".

I'd never heard of Hezbollah making a game like that -- is any of that actually true?

#39 Posted by AMyggen (3066 posts) -

@jacktrote: It was kinda popular some years ago, I guess. I like the idea of Second Life (everything is user generated) more than the game itself. It shows you what happens when you let humans do what they want, and it's not pretty!

#40 Posted by spraynardtatum (2972 posts) -

@spraynardtatum said:

Everyone enjoy your Kinects and Playstation Eyes!

The good news is that if a console really is "constantly watching" us and sending voice and/or audio data up to the internet, it'd be extremely easy to notice the heavy volume of phone-home traffic via routine packet monitoring. That is, the internet will have discovered it almost immediately, and it'd be on the front page of Reddit within hours.

Just like with Skype right? That was hidden until Snowden released the documents showing that Skype chats are monitored by the NSA after they were bought by Microsoft. What they're doing is almost completely hidden. I mean, if you choose to believe that Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, Twitter, etc. all didn't know about this, than that means the NSA/GCHQ are so good at hiding their tracks that even the multibillion dollar corporations that collect their own obscene amounts of data can't detect it. I personally think they're full of shit but don't want the public to stop buying their products/services.

Metadata is worth insane amounts of money and they don't want the government ruining their ability to collect and sell everything about everyone. We're essentially living through the gold rush of this generation.

The NSA also grabs data right from the fiber optic cables. It doesn't have to happen on the Kinect. Whatever "acceptable" amount of data that the Terms and Conditions allow to be captured are susceptible to being collected and stored by more than just the corporation that asks it in the first place.

#41 Posted by Mr_Skeleton (5144 posts) -

I hope they enjoy reading all the flaming and russian in Dota.

#42 Posted by cloudymusic (1118 posts) -

@spraynardtatum: Total red herring. During calls, Skype sends large amounts of video and audio data upstream as a matter of routine. What I'm specifically talking about is the idea that you could be watched and monitored 24/7 in your home through your console without it being detectable. Monitoring the internet traffic coming out of your console is trivial, and sending video/sound data, in any quantity, is going to stick out like a sore thumb on the network trafiic if the user isn't actively using one of those features in an online capacity.

There are lots of things out there one could be concerned about, but until someone can demonstrate how the NSA could be monitoring a live video and audio feed of your house without it being immediately noticeable to those with even a basic understanding of computer network diagnostics, I'll remain unconvinced about that particular point. Monitoring what you say in online voice chat? Sure. But this "always listening/watching" fearmongering should be extremely easy to prove if it's actually happening, because nothing the NSA can possibly do can work around the basic physics of sending data through a wire.

#43 Posted by crithon (3269 posts) -

I'm often reminded of the Halo 3 compilation video by gaygamer.net as this whole perpetuation of policing video games.... BUT, I would like to play a game where I could instruct someone else to stand here while I unlock something instead of being trapped into some sort of Nintendo style communication system. Because I want a little bit of freedom because I don't intend on terroristic threatening people when I play.

But then again what's the point we have thought police, and people even on message boards can't even understand what your saying 99% of the time and trying to infer some sort of craziness from a comment.

#44 Posted by Milkman (16802 posts) -

21:15 EST. Raided Blackwing Lair with members of the guild "AmericaSuxDikkk." tonight. Tension within the group when user "Ilikebutts" "ninja-ed" an item. User was removed from the guild and called a "failtard." No link to Al-Qaeda yet established.

#45 Posted by SMTDante89 (2581 posts) -

Just reminds me of this a bit.

Online
#46 Posted by TheHT (11292 posts) -

Government agencies caught playing games on company time, insist it's work.

Seriously though, this stuff is so silly. The thought of terrorists meeting up in some dark corner of Orgrimmar and plotting their nefarious plots is laughably ridiculous. But I guess that's why they'd think to look there!

#47 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5488 posts) -

Why not the Secret World? Isn't that game ostensibly about this exact thing?

#48 Edited by spraynardtatum (2972 posts) -

@cloudymusic said:

@spraynardtatum: Total red herring. During calls, Skype sends large amounts of video and audio data upstream as a matter of routine. What I'm specifically talking about is the idea that you could be watched and monitored 24/7 in your home through your console without it being detectable. Monitoring the internet traffic coming out of your console is trivial, and sending video/sound data, in any quantity, is going to stick out like a sore thumb on the network trafiic if the user isn't actively using one of those features in an online capacity.

There are lots of things out there one could be concerned about, but until someone can demonstrate how the NSA could be monitoring a live video and audio feed of your house without it being immediately noticeable to those with even a basic understanding of computer network diagnostics, I'll remain unconvinced about that particular point. Monitoring what you say in online voice chat? Sure. But this "always listening/watching" fearmongering should be extremely easy to prove if it's actually happening, because nothing the NSA can possibly do can work around the basic physics of sending data through a wire.

The Xbox One sends video and audio data routinely. The console is built around it. The Kinect is already sending audio data when you use voice controls and that's been one of the biggest selling points of the console, not to mention Skype is the app you use to video chat. No one is going to say it looks strange because it's expected. I mean, even if it only listens when you ask it to listen, it's still sending audio data. It's not ALWAYS listening/watching but it is listening and watching a pretty good chunk of the time.

#49 Posted by Khronikos (67 posts) -

Such a surprise. I am shocked! I spend a lot of time nude in front of my Kinect. HINT HINT please watch me more whoever is listening!

#50 Edited by Colourful_Hippie (4352 posts) -

Well this is getting ridiculous, really fast.