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Why Is Proprietary Software So Bad?

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| One of the biggest arguments in the Linux world rages around proprietary
| software (software restricted by license and/or price). The majority of the
| Linux users out there are for pure FLOSS (Free Libre Open Source Software).
| That is, they only want FLOSS software on their machines. This movement
| really took off mostly because many of the original Linux and UNIX pioneers
| were firm FLOSS disciples.



Why are European governments able to do more for less when it comes to National

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| Fon has to comply with RIPA an act so strict that makes the Patriot act look
| simple. Fon has to provide special VPN tunneling technology in the UK for the
| UK secret services to investigate suspected criminals and terrorists when
| they log on to our WiFi signal. But this is not of course only Fon. Every UK
| ISP from BT down, Carphone Warehouse, Virgin, Sky, all have to provide this
| capability to the UK government.


Skype: We can't comply with police wiretap requests

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| There's no guarantee that Skype's AES encryption is implemented properly or
| that there aren't lingering security flaws. A 2006 presentation at the
| BlackHat Europe conference in March said the right algorithms were being
| used, but that there's "no way" to know if a backdoor for eavesdropping
| exists. A Skype-commissioned independent evaluation, however, gave it a
| thumbs-up.



Beware of Skype

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| The Skype network has been a concern of government intelligence agencies
| since its inception because it provides a worldwide network of encrypted VoIP
| calls to potential “terrorists”. So how coincidental is it that 10 days after
| Bush signs into law a Bill giving the government authority to track foreign
| calls that go through U.S. networks that Skype, for the first time in its
| existence, undergoes a massive worldwide outage?
| [...]
| But there are FOSS alternatives to Skype people really should start
| considering now. One is the OpenWengo Project. Businesses, and even
| individuals, should also consider setting up their own Asterisk servers with
| encryption.


Why proprietary code is bad for security

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| Tho Skype is using an encrypted protocol, it’s still their own, non-disclosed
| code and property. So we don’t know what it contains.
| [...]
| It’s time to stop accepting that we are the bad guys, and to stop consuming
| things we just don’t understand (and cannot, because they are proprietary,
| closed-source systems).
| Say no to companies, or even governments who treat you like this. Start using
| open sourced products and protocols wherever you can. Even if you could
| still never understand the code used in these systems, there are still lots
| of people who can, and who will examine it. The magic word here is “peer
| review” - your friend or buddy or neighbour may be able to understand all
| that, and to help. No, not with Skype or Windows or any black box from Cisco.


Cryptome: NSA has access to Windows Mobile smartphones

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| First time in history Cryptome.org has released information about the
| characteristics of NSA’s network surveillance.

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