Thank You, and Happy New Year

Dear Friends,

What a year 2016 has been! On the one hand, the American FCC finally began to act to protect Internet users against monopolistic abuses by ISP’s, such as by imposing limits on the secretive collection and sale of consumers’ private information. On the other hand, consumers have suffered from continuing data breaches, such as the notorious hacks of Yahoo! and Adult Friend Finder, while governments worldwide have increased censorship efforts against both porn and political dissent. Adding to the concerns, the incoming US administration has declared its commitment to roll back hard-won consumer protections such as net neutrality and announced its willingness to resurrect the failed adult-content censorship policies of the past.

Despite the political turmoil, this past year was mostly good for me, although my health has continued to deteriorate. I had wanted to comment regularly about the political and legal challenges facing consumers and the adult content industry, but because of painful arthritis of the shoulders, I can no longer write beyond a paragraph or two at a time.

As the year draws to a close, I feel that this would also be a good time for me to retire from blogging, at least for now. I thank all of my readers for their support over the past 3 1/2 years. My wish is that all of us will have a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year and many more great years ahead.

Happy New Year 2017

Happy New Year 2017

Adult Site xHamster Hacked

Techcrunch reports:

Thousands of xHamster login credentials surface online

Around 380,000 log-in credentials used at adult site xHamster have been compromised, including military and government e-mail addresses. Anyone who has an account there should change their password immediately. This incident reinforces the importance of using separate passwords for each account and not using work or sensitive e-mail addresses to register for adult websites.

Huge DDoS Attack Ongoing, and Another Breach at Adult Dating Site

Happening now: several Denial of Service attacks are ongoing against DNS provider Dyn, knocking down major websites including Twitter and GitHub.

Furthermore, CSO Online reported a few hours ago on another huge compromise of private information from adult dating and entertainment sites:

Penthouse, Adult FriendFinder databases leak, at least 100 million accounts impacted

Databases recently obtained by LeakedSource, as well as source code, configuration files, certificate keys, and access control lists, point to a massive compromise at FriendFinder Networks Inc., the company behind AdultFriendFinder.com, Penthouse.com, Cams.com, and more than a dozen other websites.

Personal Leave

I have experienced some major health issues recently which will limit my ability to post here for a while. I hope to be back to a more normal routine soon, especially in view of the rich fodder for blog posts provided by the US election season.

Favorable Developments

Just a quick post from me for now. This week has seen favorable developments in Internet privacy, sexual health news, and the survival of traditional adult media.

According to DSL Reports:

“In a new letter sent to the FCC (pdf), around 60 consumer groups are urging the FCC to quickly and clearly adopt “strong rules to protect consumers from having their personal data collected and shared by their broadband provider without affirmative consent, or for purposes other than providing broadband Internet access service.”

From an article at RH Reality Check titled There Really Isn’t Any Bad News for People Who Like to Masturbate:

“A recent Maxim article warned readers that masturbation may be harmful in the long wrong if they do it too often or the wrong way. Thankfully, the article is based on pseudoscience and misunderstandings—there is no reason to stop the activity.”

And finally, from Consumerist, the title says it all:

Penthouse Keeping Magazine, Citing The “Gravitas” Of The Printed Page

 

Medical Leave

I haven’t been able to post much here recently because of a medical issue which is limiting my ability to type. I plan to resume blogging as soon as the situation allows. Thank you all for your patience.

A Worthy Cause for #givingtuesday

Press release from https://www.fightforthefuture.org:


Today is #givingtuesday, a moment when many people are deciding which non-profits to give to, this holiday season.  There are many worthy causes and organizations, but here is one big reason you should give to Fight for the Future:

2015 has been an absolutely, positively, jaw-on-the-floor-incredible year for the open Internet.

As a movement, we won the strongest-ever protections for Net Neutrality, AND we watched major sections of the PATRIOT Act expire and then get reformed. People have been working on both of those issues for over a decade, and this year we had huge wins on both just months apart.

Which is to say, if there was any doubt before, Internet users are unquestionably a force to be reckoned with — and for all the amazing wins we had in 2015, we want 2016 to be better.

In a year, I want to be able to email you talking about how we won even stronger protections for users everywhere in 2016. How we made it so more people are able to connect to the Internet, and that the Internet they’re connecting to is safer, more open, and more free than ever. And not just in one country, but around the world.

To do that, we need you to fight with us.

Can you become a Fight for the Future member? If just 100 people sign up to become members today, we’ll be more powerful than ever in 2016. (Also, if you sign up today we’ll give you a t-shirt, as thanks.)

Yes, I can chip in $25 each year or $5 every month to become a Fight for the Future member.

Becoming a member means that you’re standing with us, that you believe in our approach and our team, and want to help us launch the campaigns that make 2016 just as successful as 2015. Campaigns like #faxbigbrother, which sent over 6 million faxes to Congress in a matter of weeks opposing surveillance. Or the Internet Health Test, which let us keep tabs on which ISPs were breaking the new Net Neutrality rules.

Right now, Fight for the Future is a small, scrappy team. There are just 8 of us, and we work together every day coming up with creative tactics that cut through the noise on important issues, resonating powerfully with people and moving legislators.

We don’t intend to change that — because the way we campaign works. But with members committed to making a monthly (or annual) donation, we can spend less time fundraising and more time building campaigns that win. An extra campaigner, coder, or designer lets us move more quickly and capitalize on important moments. Your support lets us bring those people on.

Can you join us and help build the Internet into the most powerful political force imaginable?

Our goal is to raise $15,000 today, and have 100 people become Fight for the Future members. Can you help us do that?

Yes, I want to become a member of Fight for the Future.

No, but I can chip in $5 today to help protect the Internet in 2016.

This #GivingTuesday there are so many different causes and activist struggles to support. But nearly all of these other causes depend on the open Internet to win. And that’s what we’re defending. Heck, without the open Internet, even #GivingTuesday itself wouldn’t be possible.

So please, consider becoming a member of the organization that fights to keep the open Internet alive, and all those other efforts safely humming away, building a better world.

For the Internet,

Tiffiniy, Holmes and the whole gang at Fight for the Future

Parental Control Software, Lenovo PCs With Possible Malware

Last week, news broke that certain models of Lenovo computers were shipped with the dangerous “Superfish” adware preinstalled at the factory. Further, researchers found that several brands of parental control software also contained the same weak root-level “Komodia” security certificate associated with Superfish.

Anyone who has a 2014 or 2015 Lenovo computer, or who has ever used any type of parental control software, should run a test with each installed browser using one of the test sites listed below to ensure that the Komodia certificate is not installed.

Filippo.io test here: https://filippo.io/Badfish/

Last Pass test, including detailed removal instructions, here: https://lastpass.com/superfish/

ASACP Comes Under Attack

ASACP, an adult-industry website devoted to keeping young people safe online, has come under a DDoS attack. Its director, Tim Henning, says that “an unholy alliance of pedophiles and religious groups are seeking to damage ASACP and put an end to the good work it does in keeping children out of and away from adult entertainment.”

ASACP, RTA Fight Off Cyber Attack

The Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection (ASACP) has announced that it is taking emergency actions to fend off a criminal attack. Read More>>