Just Because You're Paranoid...

Bruce Schneier's webpage.

Bruce Schneier's webpage.

....doesn't mean people aren't out to get you.

This week, noted security expert Bruce Schneier mentioned in his Crypto-Gram newsletter an interesting hack of a computer monitor. He notes:

A group of researchers has found a way to hack directly into the tiny computer that controls your monitor without getting into your actual computer, and both see the pixels displayed on the monitor -- effectively spying on you -- and also manipulate the pixels to display different images.

Mr. Schneier's note reminds us of an important point. When you're using your government computer, the agency can and does actively spy on its employees. They can view the websites you visit, passwords you type on your keyboard, and even activate the camera and microphone on your computer.

All this is a way of saying that you should avoid doing personal web surfing on your government equipment. While EPA has a limited personal use policy that allows some use of the government computer for non-government purposes, it always easier not having to explain to your boss why you are visiting 75 pages a day on the Washington Post website. Our recommendation is do your surfing on your personal phone.