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Tourist Finds An ATM Skimmer Whilst On Vacation

Security expert Benjamin Tedesco found an illegal cash skimmer on an ATM machine whilst on holiday in Vienna, Austria.

The skimmer was located on the ATM machine near St. Stephen’s Cathedral, based in the Austrian capital.

His video of the incident has already amassed two million views.

Tedesco noticed glue around the skimmer which instantly determines that it’s fake.

To prove it, he pulls off the skimmer and shows us how identical the real and fake machines are.

He then speaks to an ATM user to warn her about the danger of the fake skimmer as soon as she goes to insert her card.

atm user

Tedesco said, ‘While on vacation with my family in Vienna, Austria, I went to grab some cash from an ATM.

‘Being security paranoid, I repeated my typical habit of checking the card reader with my hand as I have 100s of times…; today’s the day when my security awareness paid off’.

‘In addition to the magnetic strip reader, it has a battery (the large silver object on the right), some sort of switch (the small silver object in the middle with the small black tab sticking out of it), and of course the control board with the 4 pin connector (the large green board to the left).’

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He added, ‘I have since notified the Vienna Police Department regarding this discovery’.

Tedesco noticed something else suspicious after watching a spoof of his video by Ali Rahmoun. It shows a missing grey slip that could have been a camera.

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The camera was positioned over the keyboard so that PIN codes can be recorded. Whilst it was in Tedesco’s video, it was removed in Rahmoun’s.

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So if you’re on a luxurious holiday this year, keep alert for potential threats like this.

Source

http://www.timetobreak.com/5982711/tourist-finds-an-atm-skimmer-whilst-on-holiday/

The Flood Waters Swallowed Their Neighbors Whole. These People Were Geniuses.

As preppers and survivalists, we understand the importance of being properly prepared for any type of natural disasters.

Many citizens are not prepared, and some may even consider you a little crazy for preparing for emergencies. However, when it comes down to it, preppers tend to be looked upon as geniuses once disaster strikes.

When these Southern citizens were faced with some of their own natural disasters, they handled it exactly as you would expect..

When The Waters Of The Mississippi River Broke In April 2011, It Created One Of The Largest And The Most Damaging Floods In The U.S. But Some Residents Decided They Wouldn’t Let Their Homes Be Destroyed…

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… These preppers took Matters Into Their Own Hands Instead Of Letting THIS Happen.

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They Created Mini-Islands Together!

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… Of Course, Some Didn’t Quite Make It..

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Although these didn”t all work, the cooperation needed to create these “islands” to save surrounding neighbors is incredibly moving. It brings a newfound respect for the South, where your neighbors are your family, and makes me want to move there ASAP.

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City Tells Veteran He Will be Arrested if He Continues to Live Off the Grid [VIDEO]

Wow, wow, wow.

It seems like every single day the world is getting worse and worse for us within the USA who want to live off the grid.

The city of Huntsville, AL has told a couple who are living completely off their land that if they continue, they will be arrested for trespassing on their own land. You read that right, trespassing on their own land.

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Military veteran Tyler Truitt, along with his girlfriend, has setup his home on two acres inside the Huntsville city limit. He uses a solar system to supply the property with power and collects rain water.

However, Huntsville is telling him that if he doesn’t get hooked up to city water and power, he could be arrested. According to local media coverage:

“They came and they condemned our house and told us if we stayed here we’d be arrested for trespassing on our own property, and the reason why is, they said, it was unsafe living conditions because we don’t have city utilities hooked up,” Truitt explained.

The former military member says he just wants the freedoms he swore he’d protect.

“I took an oath that I would support and defend the constitution and the freedoms that entails, and I really feel like those are being trampled upon,” Truitt said.

Truitt is prepared to fight for his property. “You have to stand up for what you believe in. They could come out here today if they wanted to and take us to jail for trespassing if that’s what they want to call it and, you know, that’d be fine with me. I’ll still come back the next day and the next day and the next day because it’s my home and because I live here. Where else am I supposed to go really?”

The city is currently in the process of suing Truitt along with the criminal threats.

 

Original article source: http://tribunist.com/news/city-tells-veteran-he-will-be-arrested-if-he-continues-to-live-off-the-grid-video/

 

What do you think of this? 

Protecting Credit Cards From RFID Scanning Theft

For as long as civilizations have used money – from ancient coins to modern paper bills – there have been pickpockets. Stealing cash by stealth from individuals as they go about in public has been a form of robbery for literally thousands of years, but with the recent introduction of “smart” contactless credit cards, a new form of electronic pickpocketing has become even easier.

It is now possible for someone to have their pocket “picked” from a distance, without the thief even having to physically touch the victim’s wallet. Fortunately, there are ways to protect from this new high-tech pickpocketing.

Credit cards were originally conceived of not just a way of borrowing money, or at least deferring payment by the consumer, but also as more convenient and safer than carrying cash. Even if a card owner was robbed or otherwise lost the card, a quick telephone call would cancel the card and render it useless.

A weakness in the security system began to be exploited in the 1960s, though, when transactions required an imprint of the card and a signature by the card holder on three copies of the receipt: one each for the card holder, the merchant and the bank.

Thieves discovered that a record of the card number and signature were available on the carbon paper used between these copies. This security flaw was plugged by paperless scanning technology, introduced with magnetic strips attached to the back of the card. The data was read electronically by a reader when the card was swiped during the purchase transaction, without the need of any paper records.

In the late 1990s, a new form of smart credit cards began to be introduced into the marketplace. These use radio frequency identification (RFID) microchips imbedded into the card. These chips carry much more information about the credit card account, are more difficult and expensive to counterfeit and were much easier and faster to use when charging a purchase: The card no longer had to be swiped through a reader, but merely waved in front of a reader which would electronically query the microchip for the information required to complete the transaction.

Unfortunately, this “contactless” technology also exposes the cardholders to a new form of fraud: If they can be read by authorized readers, the cards can also be read by unauthorized ones and the information used to make fraudulent purchases. It is pickpocketing crossed with identify theft.

With an easily-obtained contactless credit card reader, a laptop computer containing the required software and memory and a power source, a credit card thief can read and record the information from credit cards, right through the cloth and leather of pockets, purses, briefcases and bags of anyone just a few feet away.

All the thief has to do is carry their credit card trapping system unobtrusively in a crowd – from a mall to the lobby of a hotel – and he can harvest a large number of data sets.

The reader’s signal identifies queries and records the information from the RFID chips, including the credit card number, expiration date, name of the card holder and a one-time CVV security code. The only defense the contactless chips offer is that the CVV code can only be used once, for the next transaction; if the card holder uses the card for another transaction before the thief does, the system will note the discrepancy and automatically block any transaction with that card number.

Of course, the work-around for a credit card thief is to have a set of fraudulent transactions pre-loaded in their systems, to allow the card number to be used as soon as it is stolen.

Anyone whose credit card has an RFID chip imbedded is at risk for this form of fraud. How do they know if their cards use this technology? It’s difficult to know: While some smart contactless cards are marked with names such as “PayPass” or logos marked with “RFID” or “Radio,” the issuers are not required to identify the cards using this technology.

With nearly 400 million credit card accounts active in the United States, as of the third quarter of 2013 (the most recent period for which there are data), the number of smart contactless cards that are potentially open to theft is very large.

Fortunately, there are products already on the market to guard against unauthorized RFID scanning and data theft. Protective sleeves for individual cards or multiple cards, wallets and even money belts are readily available on the market.

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These are made from material that blocks the signals from the readers, preventing the data on the chips from being transferred. If used consistently, they will frustrate electronic pickpockets.

References:

“Magnetic stripe card,” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, published (revised) April 9, 2014, accessed May 20, 2014

“Outdated Magnetic Strips: How U.S. Credit Card Security Lags,” Alan Yu, NPR, published December 19, 2014, accessed May 20, 2014

“Hacker’s Demo Shows How Easily Credit Cards Can Be Read Through Clothes And Wallets,” Andy Greenberg, Forbes, published January 30, 2012, accessed May 20, 2014  

“Products block unauthorized RFID reading of contactless cards,” Homeland Security News Wire, published May 21, 2009, accessed May 20, 2014

“Credit card statistics, industry facts, debt statistics,” Daniel P. Ray and Yasmin Ghahremani,CreditCards.com, published May 20, 2014, accessed May 20, 2014

How to make self-rising flour

How to make self-rising flour

Diversify your all-purpose flour to make it truly all purpose

If you are a prepper then the odds are you have a supply of grain somewhere in your food storage. You may have all-purpose flour stored up and even some self-rising flour. Still, you need to know how to create your own various flours and baking ingredients from scratch.

Produce and baking ingredients may not be available in a survivalist situation. Where many overlook ingredient preparation skills, it is a vital part in being able to make and cook your own food. As bread is one of the cheapest foods to make (and yes I now there is little nutritional value in it), understanding how to make self-rising flour is important. Here is a step by step guide on how to make your own self-rising flour.

Step One: Get some grain seed


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If you do not have wheat or nuts, you can generally find a supply at an orchard or a farmer’s market. As grain grows in an abundance (as of now) the seeds are relatively cheap. Wheat seeds have a light brown texture or a somewhat white appearance. You do not want to get dark or roasted seeds. If you do not want to use wheat you can substitute barley, oats, nuts, rye, corn, and such to make your flour.

Keep in mind that for the best results wheat should be used as you are going to prepare the ingredients for a chemical reaction. ENSURE YOUR SEEDS ARE DRY. If you need to use a dehydrator to ensure that all the moisture is out of the seeds.

 

It is better that you have a dry seed then to have anything wet. If using nuts, you will want to shell the nut. Keep in mind that certain nuts have a low shelf life and do not make good flour (such as walnuts) where other nuts are great for flour (such as almonds). Do a bit of research to see which choice is best for you.

Step Two: Grind it to a powder

The next step is to grind the seeds to a powder. You want to ensure that there are no big chunks of seed within the mixture. Personally, I use a food processor and put the setting to pulp. The flour should be nice and fluffy. If it looks like blue cheese or has a sandy feel to it you need to grind it more.

As there is no liquid in the seed you should not have a paste.  If your seeds do form a paste then you will need to remove the moisture from your remaining seeds and start over. Of course, you can always cheat and go to a health food store and they will usually grind it for you.

Step Three: Add Backing Powder

Backing powder is going to be the main substance that causes the flour to rise. However, you do not want to overdo it. The ratio is 1 and ½ teaspoon for every cup of flour that you have made.  One pound of unground wheat will make about 4 cups of flour when ground. This would be the easiest way to add the baking soda as it would be a full 6 teaspoons.

Mix the contents in thoroughly.  It is recommended that you put the flour and the baking powder into the food processor and hit the pulse button a few times. If you are making the flour in a wilderness situation then you will want to mix the flour until there are no visible signs of the powder in the flour.

Step Four: Add Salt

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¼ of a teaspoon of salt is added to every cup. Again, it is better that you add salt on a pound (4 cups) as it makes the math a bit easier. You do not want to use salt that has thick grains such as rock salt, sea salt, kosher salt, or Epson (as that should never be used in cooking). Salts should consist of iodized table salt. Mix

Ensure that you package the flour in an area that cannot get moist. Air tight containers are best. Also, label the flour so that you do not get it mixed up with your all-purpose flour.

Important Note:

While your bread may consist of fruits and nuts, it is not advised that you add anything to your flour except that which is needed to convert it to self-rising flour. As you are setting up the flour to create a chemical reaction, you should not add spices and other ingredients to the mixture which could compromise the process. Save your dehydrated fruits, nuts, and spices for when you are ready to bake your bread and then follow the recipe.

Why should you make self-rising flour?

From a prepper’s perspective, it may be more beneficial to stock up on bags of self-rising flour than to make it. Yet, this is not necessarily true. You will need to use all-purpose flour for many occasions and will rarely need to have the self-rising flour. Salt and Baking Powder should already be a part of your food storage. Therefore, you should already have everything that you need in order to make the flour. Why buy something extra that will take up additional space on your shelves?

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An additional benefit to making your own self-rising flour (or purchasing it) is that you will eliminate the need to store up on yeast. Granted, if you are planning on making wine you will need yeast, but for baking and other standard uses, the self-rising flour will work out just fine.

Financially making your own flour saves a ton of money. The average bag of all-purpose organic flour costs between $7 (for Gold Medal) to $54 (King Arthur Flour).  Making your own all-purpose flour costs you about $2. Plus, making your own self-rising flour eliminates the dyes and the bleach used in commercial brands. Bottom line, you get a better product that last longer for cheaper.