Thursday, January 26, 2012

Warrant Required for GPS Tracking? Or Not?

The Supreme Court released a unanimous decision in support of requiring a search warrant to track movement of a criminal suspect. But is that what was really decided?

The controversy comes from a split justification as to what is actually required in the usage of GPS tracking. The case being reviewed by the Supreme Court was in regard to a nightclub owner in Washington D.C. who was tracked to a stash of money and drugs with the use of a GPS device. The result was that he was sentenced to life in prison.

Later an Appeals Court in Washington overturned the conviction. The reasoning of the court was that the police did not possess a warrant when they installed the GPS device on the vehicle. Nor did police seek a warrant in the following months as they continued to watch the movements of nightclub owner.

The Supreme Court was universal in support of a person’s 4th Amendment, which guards against unreasonable searched and seizures. The reasoning in how the 4th Amendment applies is what is causing the confusion.

Five Justices of the nine member panel released an opinion that the usage of GPS on a car is a type of “search”. In the ruling, the justices included mention of surveillance through smartphones or other GPS capable devices. The codification that the usage of GPS is a type of “search” has been interrupted by legal analysts that a warrant would be required similarly to any other search process, although the word “warrant” was not specifically mentioned in the rulings.  

The other four justices, while concurring that a “search” took place in the case, reasoned that the defendants “reasonable expectations of privacy were violated by the long-term monitoring of the movements of the vehicle he drove”. There was no mention of how much time was needed to be classified as “long-term”.

The release of the two opinions, was joined by an additional concurring statement by Justice Sotomayor, one of the five Justices agreeing that GPS tracking is a type of search, who agreed that privacy was expected not only when police use a GPS device on a vehicle, but also when no physical invasion occurred, reinforcing the idea that a warrant would be required to access information on GPS-enabled devices and smartphones.

There are still many unanswered questions. It is to be expected that see more cases testing these new boundaries in the future and perhaps further define the murky grey areas that still surround them.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Judge Rules Data on Hard Drives Not Protected

Judge Robert Blackburn, a federal judge in Colorado, ruled Tuesday that a Peyton, Colorado defendant had until the 21st of February to decrypt the hard drive of a laptop computer or face contempt of court and other potential consequences. 

What makes this unusual is that in other cases across the United States a person could "plead the Fifth" to refuse to answer a questions because the response could provide self-incriminating evidence of an illegal act. In this case, the woman is on record speaking about how her laptop contained incriminating evidence.

That aside, the ruling also flies in the face of previous rulings in the US have ruled that passwords would not have to be surrendered allowing individuals to protect themselves from self-incrimination. A ruling supporting this thought was provided by a federal judge in Michigan in March 2010. On the other hand, across the county in Vermont a year earlier, a federal judge ordered a defendant to unencrypt his files which in turn led to his conviction.

Questions of whether a defendant can be legally required to surrender his password or passphrase has led to rulings on both sides, but has yet to reach the Supreme Court. A common view is that if prosecutors can subpoena access to homes, cars, other lockable objects, why it should be any different from hard-drives or other encryption media. The opposing view is that the fifth amendment protection extends to defendant's mind prohibiting them from having to reveal the password or passphrase to decrypt the media.

In the case of Judge Blackburn in Colorado, he ruled that forcing a defendant to decrypt a laptop so its contents can be inspected is essentially the same as producing any other type of evidence. In this case, the defendant is not required to write out or speak her password, only to enter it into the laptop. The prosecution in turn would still need to review and identify whether any illegal activity took place once the data is unencrypted.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Stance on IP Violations

In my previous post I replied to the US Chamber of Commerce's stance on SOPA and PIPA. Afterwards I received a few inquiries from various people who questioned as to what my stance on Intellectual Property theft was and what other issues do I have with SOPA and PIPA, so I thought I would post to make sure it is clear.

To the first inquiry, I would like to say that Intellectual Property theft is a real concern. My associates here at Dolomite and I work diligently to protect our Intellectual Property and the Intellectual Property of the companies we represent.

To the later question, I am a bit surprised. If the issues I pointed out previously weren't enough, then let me add another few more.

Both SOPA and PIPA were designed to block domain names responsible for piracy and to help curb the source of funding for the web sites involved. Both are laudable goals. Unfortunately, how the bills went about it was ineffective.

If you block a domain name, you can still access the domain name with the IP Address. This is a simple thing and easy to do. Most teenagers can do it and you can be sure that those who want to pirate something will learn how to do it. Besides, there are many tools that will do this for you already. In fact, with the rise of the publicity resulting from SOPA and PIPA, many new tools have come out, including some that integrate into your browser to automate the process.

When it comes to funding for the web sites I have a few other concerns. First, how can you enforce that any company that does business with a site will stop? Most sites have multiple sources of revenue; advertising, links in search engines, subscriptions, etc. Are they suspended to the business running the website or just to that particular website? And what happens if a website provides content under multiple domain names and only one domain is listed in the ex parte proceeding? Do we need to cut links to one site but are allowed to continue doing business with the other? Probably most important, if a website is providing legitimate content, but a few items turn out to be illegitimate, is sites funding still frozen or only funding to the pages with the pirates content? For that matter how do you decide how to break it down?

There are too many questions that need to be answered. Both methods to curb piracy addressed in the bill are inadequate and won't work.

If your going to do something to curb piracy, lets atleast try to do it right. And in the process, lets make sure our right to Freedom of Speech is not put in a state where it is limited. There is room to do take action against piracy while still protecting speech. Now we just need to get our Congressional leaders to see that.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Response to US Chamber of Commerce Support of SOPA / PIPA

Recently I received an email that was forwarded to me from the US Chamber of Commerce. In the email, Mr Engstrom, Senior Vice President & National Political Director of the Chamber, expressed his support of the SOPA and PIPA bills currently being considered in Congress. Below is my response to his letter:


Dear Mr Engstrom,

I am writing you today concerning your recent email that was forwarded to me concerning the Protect IP act. In your email, you mentioned that Wikipedia and Google went darks because they opposed preventing online piracy. That simple isn’t true and I am ashamed you would publish that idea with your signature attached to your comments.

Further, you went on to say that Google and Wikipedia are fighting against “ANY” regulation over the Internet. Once again, a blatant lie.  You also mention that the bills drafted in Congress are very narrow, carefully tailed pieces of legislation. This too is incorrect.

So let me break down a few facts you seem to have overlooked.

1)      The protests by Google, Wikipedia, and over 18,000 other websites and companies yesterday were protesting the threat to our free speech across the Internet and because SOPA and PIPA undermine the openness and free exchange of information at the heart of the Internet. I understand that the AFL-CIO’s Paul Almeida stated that free speech was not a relevant consideration, but as a Senior Vice President and National Political Director of the US Chamber of Commerce, I expected more from you and the Chamber. Free Speech is critical to the thousands of businesses your organization represents. Threats to Free Speech are threats to business!!

2)      Wikipedia, Google, and many others already have policies and practices in place where victims of fraud or piracy can make requests to have listings and illegal content removed. These have been used successfully for many years and are common practice for the search engines, as well as all US websites. These policies are part of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

With the passing of these bills, “safe harbor” provisions would be bypassed. The bills place the responsibility for detecting and policing infringement onto the respective website themselves, regardless of how big or how small a website might be. This means that all business websites will be required to regular police their websites to check user comments for posting and/or linking to illegal activity. And let’s not even go into the fact that many business owners would not know what might be illegal in the first place, but they would still be responsible for it nonetheless.

3)      One other major objection to both SOPA and PIPA is an objection to the Domain Name System (DNS) blocking and redirection.  I notice you skip over most of this in your video release, but this is one of the core objections to many of the participants in today’s protest. The bill, if passed in its current form would fracture the DNS system and allow for a reversal in ongoing efforts to secure the Internet. Ironically, even current supporters of both SOPA and PIPA are in agreement and have expressed a potential willingness to remove the DNS filtering provision from the bill. In fact, some have proposed a complete rewrite of the bill in the form of the OPEN Act.

Due to the nature of the potential DNS blocking and redirection, if implemented in its current form, multiple software tools already exist and more have been released to bypass the potential changes. One plugin, now available on Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer, has already been downloaded by over 50,000 users. The plugin would allow users to do DNS lookups through foreign DNS servers so users can continue to go to blocked websites. So far the downloads that have taken place have been minimal. They will continue to grow if DNS blocking remains part of these bills. These numbers exclude the thousands of proxies and other tools already out there that have been used for years. What good will it do to weaken the security and resilience of the Internet and increase burdens on businesses, if the blocked website can be circumvented with ease?

The assumption that it is the government making the case for DNS blocking and so the services of legitimate companies will not be affected is not accurate either. In fact, in attempting to seize a recent child porn domain name, ICE accidentally took down an extra 84,000 sites and redirected them to a banner claiming that they had been busted as part of a child porn investigation. This is just one example of failed DNS blocking and intrusion on legitimate business.

By the way, one example of a company who supports DNS blocking is China. Others include Iran, Syria, and North Korea. Few countries in the world use DNS blocking on a regular basis, such as what this bill provides. Are these the types of companies we want to be lumped together with??

4)      I would also point out that although the bills target foreign website, the remedies and enforcement would extend to domestic websites as well. For example, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook could be affected and served a court order to shut down due to someone uploading a rogue video even though they may have legitimate content hosted elsewhere. The language in the bill is not specific enough about what constitutes an infringing web site and respective remedies for different types of infringement. It is an all or nothing deal.

5)      In your video and the website, you mentioned that the bills will give law enforcement the tools they need in a digital age to deal with rogue sites. Besides the exception that DNS blocking would not work, I want to point out that the bills due not require a federal courts ruling.  The bills call for an ex parte proceeding – proceeding at which only one side, typically the prosecutor or the accuser, need be present.  The allegedly infringing site need not be present, nor even made aware that the action was pending. I have serious concerns about due process in actions of this nature. There are already concerns of abuse in our judicial system, why do we want to support any types of bill that could deprive a person of property without a fair hearing and a reasonable opportunity to be heard?

What is worse in my mind is that for an organization that is supposed to be helping protect businesses and helping them to succeed, you and US Chamber of Commerce sure have a funny way of showing us your support. Especially when you are trying to suppress our Freedom of Speech, burden us with further business requirements, and diverting our time away from our business to look for rogue content. By the way, since the responsibility to look for the rogue content would now be mine to look for, who is going to tell me what the rogue content might look like? Perhaps the US Chamber of Commerce?

For that matter, why any organization supports anything that is Anti-Freedom of Speech is unimaginable to me. That alone should have you reconsider the support of these bills.

Please take a deep look at what you are endorsing and revoke your support for PIPA and SOPA. I would hate to have to reconsider my business support and membership to the various Chapters of the Chamber of Commerce we currently belong to.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Do It Yourself Computer Repair Hassles

Dо іt Υоursеlf Computer Repair Hassles

Do іt уоursеlf computer repair allows уоu tо perform іmmеdіаtе repairs fоr уоur usual computer problems. Ноwеvеr, thіs task requires уоu tо hаvе а thorough understanding оf thе details оf уоur computer hardware аnd software. Іf уоur confidence аt dоіng thіs task lies оn а fеw раgеs оf how-to аnd repair manuals, thеrе іs а good chance thаt уоu mіght dо mоrе harm thаn good іn correcting thе problem. Аlthоugh performing dо іt уоursеlf repair gіvеs уоu thе power tо mаkе thе final decision іn уоur еvеrу move, іt mау nоt bе thе best decision tо make.

The Do-It-Yourself Type оf Computer Owners

It іs understandable fоr self-reliant people tо perform а dо іt уоursеlf repair. Whіlе іt dictates thе speed аs well аs thе efficiency аt whісh thе adjustments, updates аnd аll nесеssаrу troubleshooting tasks will bе dоnе, іt аlsо helps yield huge savings іn dоіng simple tо complicated computer repair jobs. Ноwеvеr, јust lіkе аnу form оf repair, уоu nееd tо fіrst understand аll thе nitty-gritty stuff аbоut уоur computer. Υоu nееd tо bе knowledgeable аbоut computers.

Simple Computer Repairs Маdе Easy

Simple computer problems lіkе virus аnd worm attacks аnd slow operations саn bе remedied wіth routine maintenance tasks. То restore smooth аnd quick responding computing operations, уоu nееd tо maintain regular schedules оf defragmenting уоur hard drive, running disk cleanup, installing оr updating anti-virus software аnd data backup аnd recovery applications. Тhеsе maintenance measures аrе helpful іn preventing уоur computer frоm crashing. Тhеу аrе аlsо crucial іn keeping аll уоur files аnd programs protected аgаіnst thе usual attacks оf annoying spyware, malware аnd computer worms аnd viruses.

How tо handle mоrе complicated Computer Troubleshooting

You nееd tо hаvе thе correct tools tо dо computer repairs. Іn addition tо hand tools lіkе screw drivers, solder irons аnd оthеrs, software lіkе anti-virus аnd registry mechanic programs аrе аlsо considered computer repair tools. Тhеsе tools саn bе usеd tо perform minor repairs tо simple аnd common computer problems lіkе installing updates аnd upgrades tо existing programs, correcting registry problems, installation оf hardware аnd software accessories аnd mоrе. Ноwеvеr, whеn іt соmеs tо dealing wіth mоrе complicated problems, whісh mоstlу involve software аnd file problems lіkе system recovery, corrupted files, automatic shut dоwn аnd mоrе, уоu rеаllу nееd tо consult wіth аn experienced computer repair technician tо avoid furthеr damage оr loss оf data.

Оnсе уоur computer crashes, уоu nееd tо hаvе аn idea оf whаt соuld hаvе happened bеfоrе уоu perform а dо іt уоursеlf repair. Νеvеr attempt tо fіх аnd correct аnу problem thаt уоu knоw nоthіng аbоut. Тrу studying, reading аnd understanding vаrіоus repair manuals. Вut іf уоu wаnt tо confidently restore уоur computer tо іts smooth humming condition, consider finding аn on-site computer repair technician.

Why Professional Computer Repair Services

Having well-trained professional computer technicians fіх уоur computer eliminates thе guess work оn computer repairs аnd instantly restores уоur personal productivity. Іnstеаd оf bесоmіng а slave tо thе еvеr changing study оf basic computer repairs, online computer repair services provide уоu wіth аn affordable аnd practical option tо troubleshooting уоur computer problems rеgаrdlеss оf thе extent оf іts difficulty.

Professional Repair Services fоr уоur Convenience

It іs nice tо hаvе thе rіght skill аnd knowledge tо perform а dо іt уоursеlf computer repair. Ноwеvеr, уоu nееd tо consider thаt allowing а pro tо dо thеsе repairs саn help уоu save time аnd money аs thеу аrе fully trained іn handling аll types оf computer problems. Моrе importantly, іt will save уоu frоm thе confusion аnd frustration оf роssіblу dоіng improper оr unnecessary repairs. Тhus, уоu gеt аll thеsе solutions аt affordable costs.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Online Marketing for Small Business Class Coming to Henderson

Dolomite Technology is pleased to announce that on January 18th, 2012 at 6:00 PM, Dolomite will be launching an online Social Marketing Series of Classes. The classes will provide information to help promote your business through online Social Marketing with a brief look at Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and other social websites. 

The first class on the 18th of January in 2012 will be an Introductory class of a 5 part Series, part of Dolomite's Small Business Technology Education program. Follow-up classes will take place on February 15th, March 21st, April 18th, and wrap up May 16th. All classes are expected to last about 90 minutes.

To Register to Attend this Series, please call 702-944-9922 or send an email to info @

Dolomite presents Social Marketing

Introduction to Social Marketing
January 18th, 2012
112 Water Street Ste 110
Henderson, NV 89015

Website Optimization: Getting Your Website Ready
February 15th, 2012
112 Water Street Ste 110
Henderson, NV 89015

Facebook Marketing
March 21st. 2012
112 Water Street Ste 110
Henderson, NV 89015

LinkedIn Marketing
April 18th, 2012
112 Water Street Ste 110
Henderson, NV 89015

YouTube and Other Types of Online Marketing
May 16th, 2012
112 Water Street Ste 110
Henderson, NV 89015

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Computer Repair Services and Support

Dolomite Technology has been serving the Las Vegas Valley since 1996. One of the core services is Computer Repair, one of the keystones of any computer support business. 

Dolomite provides computer repair services, computer maintenance, and computer support to the Las Vegas area, Henderson and surrounding communities. Dolomite gives you a team of dedicated professional computer technicians to help resolve your problems and repair your computer. All of Dolomite's technicians are fully certified and trained to help resolve your problems quickly and efficiently.

Dolomite offers a range of computer repair services. Beyond general computer repair services, offering complete computer tune-ups, data and hard-drive recovery as well as virus removal, malware removal and spyware removal. Additional services include printer troubleshooting, sound issue resolution, system setup, system upgrades, wireless network setup and advanced planning as you consider expanding your computer system or look to add another computer to your existing network.

Computer Tune-Ups
At Dolomite, computer repair technicians take nothing for chance. When you come in for a system tune-up, computer repair technicians automatically perform a complete diagnostic and take action to resolve or remote all conflicting issues that may make your system slow or unresponsive. All system tune-ups include Virus removal, Spyware removal, and Malware removal services, computer repairs to correct any bottlenecks, and complete system optimization to help your system run at the peak of its capacity.

Hard Drive Recovery / Data Recovery
If you find yourself in the unfortunate circumstances of having a loss of data, such as when a hard-drive crashes or you accidentally lose a file, call Dolomite immediately to repair your computer hardware and recover your files. In many cases, Dolomite Computer Repair Technicians can recover your files within hours of receipt of your damaged equipment or identification of common problems.

Virus, Malware, and Spyware Removal
Viruses, Spyware, and Malware are one of the leading causes of computer issues and problems. Issues include computer slowness or complete stoppage, data loss, and can even give remote users unintentional access to your computer or its files. Contact Dolomite to repair your computer through the processing of a complete file and security inspection. Dolomite computer repair technicians will identify any issues or problems, resolve and repair if possible. If its not possible to perform the computer repair, we will remove the offending issues and secure your system against future infections.

Printer Setup and Troubleshooting
Printers are key to generating the output you need to perform work in today's environment. If you have printer issues, contact Dolomite technical staff and we will quickly and efficiently resolve your printer problems.

Sound Issue Resolution
Some system have problems with sound or other audio issues that either suddenly or continually arise. Dolomite can help pinpoint these sounds issues and repair your computer hardware to help ensure these issues do not happen again in the future. Dolomite computer repair technicians will correct the issues and guarantee it from happening again in the future. Contact Dolomite today to begin to resolve your audio and video issues.

System Upgrades
Many people are unaware of the many nuances involved when it comes to upgrading equipment or software. At Dolomite, partnerships with core hardware vendors, complemented with the years of experience that Dolomite computer repair technicians maintain, provides the knowledge to identify and resolve conflicting issues, repair your computer, and get you going back on the road quickly. If you are looking to upgrade your computer hardware or its software, please contact Dolomite today.

System History
By having your system repaired or serviced by Dolomite, computer service and repairs are performed by a company that will keep and track your issues over time. Your system and its history are maintained in case you should need them for the future.
If you need assistance for your computer repair or computer support issue, please call Dolomite at 855-DOLOMITE (855-365-6648).