[LMB] RoL OT: Moon Over Soho - chapter 5 - The Night Gate

Andrew Barton andrew.157barton at btinternet.com
Wed Jul 16 23:35:55 BST 2014

Gwynne Powell:

> They head down under the library. Peter goes through a lot
> of doors marked 'No Admittance' during his work. And there's
> a computer that's almost older than Peter - perfect security, 
> it's totally unconnected to the outside (side note - apparently
> some European government considered going back to 
> typewriters recently, to outwit computer hackers.)

Actually, not perfect security.  It's been public information for decades that you can monitor what's on the screen of somebody's computer by receiving wave transmissions from the system.  (The details of how you protect aginst that are AFAIK still classified.)  Being disconnected does give protection against viruses and people hacking into the files on your disk.  If you ever transfer information to and from the system with a flash drive (or any writeable media), you put yourself back at risk.

The German government is reported in today's Guardian to have bought 20 manual (not electric, they wouldn't be secure) typewriters.  They can't be hacked, and each of the 20 has a unique signature so any leaked documents can be tracked to the source.  Just be sure that you always dispose of the used ribbons and carbons securely ...


More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list