A journal called The Daily
has reconstituted a false argument first offered by The Mighty Seixon
in order to "debunk" what I said about the Yfrog exploit.
But according to data provided exclusively to The Daily from TweetCongress.org, a nonprofit website that captures each member of Congress’s Twitter feeds in real time, the shot seen round the world was transmitted using TweetDeck — a popular Adobe desktop application that links up with social networking sites.
Chet Wisniewski, a senior security adviser at security software company SophosLabs, said the TweetDeck stamp “does make it more plausible that it did come from him.
Let's knock this one down quickly, shall we?
I revealed in this blog -- long before the Daily published its "exclusively" provided "data" -- that Weiner used TweetDeck that night. But so what?
The poor schlub writing for the Daily -- his name is Daniel Libit -- doesn't understand that Seixon's entire "TweetDeck" argument was based on the presupposition that the congressman used TweetDeck or some similar app EVERY SINGLE TIME. Thus, he never established a Yfrog account.
Yet even the Daily stipulates that this was not the case.
So there goes the argument. Poof
Furthermore, TweetDeck and similar apps (such as the divinely-named Twitterberry) always append an identifying signature: "via TweetDeck" and "via Twitterberry." Something like that. Weiner's previous photos didn't have that data. They were labelled "via Yfrog" and "via Twitter."
Let's take it a step further. Suppose Weiner had used TweetDeck and nothing but TweetDeck during his entire career as a twitterer. Again: So what?
TweetDeck automatically establishes a Yfrog account for you. When you try to send a pic, it even flashes a message: "Sending via Yfrog." Don't take my word for it. Download the app for yourself and try it out.
I downloaded TweetDeck and had one of my fictional creations send a pic to another. "Chalice153" had never set up a Yfrog account -- and yet one was set up for her. Here it is
. (That's Angela, my model. Pretty, isn't she?) That account was open to the very same exploit
which I pointed out in my post.
Seixon, a known Republican operative with a long and irrefutable history of flim-flammery, tried to pretend that this was not the case. Interestingly, he set up his blog to make that argument on the very day
when Yfrog plugged its security hole. The plugging made it impossible to prove him wrong via a real-world, real-time test.
Still, I don't think that such a test is necessary. Chalice153 has granted a Yfrog account the moment she sent a picture, even though she did not go to Yfrog's website to set one up. In the days before the security hole was plugged, anyone could have uploaded anything to that account.
So the entire argument is bogus. The Daily has given us techno-babble.
Weiner clearly did not use a TweetDeck-like app all the time
-- and even if he had, his automatically-created Yfrog page was open to the same security exploit.
Just in case you are wondering whether the conspirators (in this case, that much-overused term is justified
) lacked the computer savvy to make use of that exploit, let us recall what Dan Wolfe's partner Mike Stack has to say about himself:
In one 2009 post, Stack fired back at some of his online enemies, warning them to “be careful of what you say.” He claimed, “I can find out anything about anyone. The software and programs that I have at my disposal, in addition to the people who work in the wi-fi and technology field that I am partnered with make me a virtual cyber detective.”
Let's have another quote from Wisniewski:
“If I had his password, I could add his account into my TweetDeck and start sending tweets, and it would all say ‘TweetDeck,’” Wisniewski explained.
This statement proves that he hasn't been following the case. My entire point was based on the fact that Yfrog had a security loophole which allowed others to post to your account without knowing your password
. That point was proven beyond rational debate when Yfrog closed that very loophole soon after my post became widely-read.
Does Weiner's use of TweetDeck that night constitute an "extra hurdle" for the conspirators? Of course not. The statement is nonsensical on its face.
It is stipulated by all sides that the anti-Weiner conspirators were watching his twitter feed the way a lioness studies her prey. That constant, careful scrutiny is (allegedly) the reason why Dan Wolfe just happened
to see the photo immediately. They knew full well what Weiner was doing that evening. Anyone can download TweetDeck; it's a free app and takes a short time to set up.
Time to make a point which I should have mentioned earlier. Twitter is not like email. If you send a picture via Twitter to a private party (even if you use TweetDeck), that picture also shows up in your own
Twitter record. For everyone to see.
An experienced user of Twitter would have known that. I discovered that fact my first time out, and Weiner had been using the app for years.
If we are to take Gennette Cordova at her word (and I doubt that The Daily will take the legal or ethical risk of calling her a liar), then she and the congressman had never engaged in personal chit-chat. He had no way of knowing anything about her. Are we to believe that he suddenly -- and very non-anonymously -- sent a lewd photo to a girl he did not know and whose reaction he could not gauge? And that he did so knowing that the same image would be visible to anyone
, including enemies like Dan Wolfe (whose Weiner-obsessive behavior was known to the congressman)?
Again: If you believe that
, then Jonathan Lebed has some penny stocks to sell you.
I think that George "The Mighty Seixon" Gooding or one of his allied 'wingers contacted the Daily and got this story into the newstream. It's clear that the writer for the Daily did not even fully comprehend the argument. And I doubt that he had seen this
Seixon has an established history of trying to buttress dubious assertions with highly-detailed arguments which ultimately prove to be bogus. He did they same thing when he "proved" that Saddam really did have WMDs. The guy is a classic flim-flammer.
Oh -- and Mr. Wisniewski? Hope you're reading this. Sophos is a good product, but
: A while back, I had a nasty little rootkit which Sophos completely missed. Emsisoft caught it.
Nobody's perfect, eh wot?Added point:
People presume that Weiner's statement that he "can't be 100% sure" that the photo isn't of him means that is of him. If so, his consistent denials that he uploaded the photo would be a lie. But if he's willing to lie about uploading the photo, why wouldn't he simply say "Not me"?
As I've said many times, I think he was worried that that some photo-funnies between him and a former girlfriend had somehow escaped into the hands of an enemy.
The first time I got a camera phone, my ladyfriend and I took some shots which we might not want you to see. (They were by no means pornographic -- just unflattering.) I don't know if those shots still exist anywhere, and I have only a vague memory as to what they looked like. If you ever see those photos online, know that I
didn't upload them.