Smoke and Blunder is Right

As I have said before, don’t be a dick.  It never works out well for you and more often than not it bites you quite squarely on the ass.

For those who haven’t seen it yet, a new kid on the block came out today and shoved their own foot down their throat.  Now initially I didn’t really see a need to comment on this because Uncle jumped on it and many others have blogged about it as well.  What got me though was this comment from Tango through a DM.  

The forum link? “You must be a member.” Become a member and it forwards you to The High Road.

Wait, it did what!?  You join, providing a username and password, and then it sends you to another website where you have to use a different username and password.  Immediately upon reading that alarm bells started going off.  Many people have a nasty habit of using the same credentials across multiple websites, but you reading this know better, right?

So my immediate conclusion from that type of behavior is that they are farming credentials, why I am unsure.  But it is obvious that they are engaging in some back handed dealing listing people who aren’t members, thus inducing them to sign up to complain, or inducing others to join thinking the site is legitimate because of the trusted membership.

Miguel went and did a nice post showing exactly what type of user listing I’m talking about.  Those are the types of prominent users that would instill trust, trust that might cause you to sign up for a membership.  Of course being a blogger, you would probably use your blog handle and very possibly the password for your blog if you do that bad thing of the same password across multiple sites.

If you signed up for a membership with these numb-nuts I suggest changing all your other passwords if you violated that rule.  This site is anything but trustworthy and by their actions thus far makes them a house of ill repute.  This is all speculation but given the facts as presently seen, I would be concerned if I had any transactions regarding secure credentials with them.

If you need a good password manager, I suggest KeePass which also has an Andriod Application. 

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

About Barron

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms. He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.
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7 Responses to Smoke and Blunder is Right

  1. Linoge says:

    Good call on the security hazards of this website…  I am not prone to providing any login authentication information to any site I am not familiar with, and I am sure as hell not going to do it on a site that requires login to view even their most basic information, but you definitely pointed out how it oculd be a legitimate threat. 

    Cute how the guy behind all this (still anonymous, I note) explained that all away over on Unc’s.  Something tells me this is all not going to work out the way he wanted it to… 

  2. You are sorely mistaken on several points my friend. You completely ignore the “This profile created and maintained by Smoke & Thunder” disclaimer which is at the top of every profile generated by Smoke & Thunder. The only person who could see this disclaimer and still think of the profile as “fake” or a “sock puppet” isn’t paying any attention.

    The forum linking to THR is temporary until I have time to fill up the forum and pre-generate topics, just like many user profiles are pre-generated.

    You also completely ignore the stated policies about who may claim a profile (such as the one about how profiles of real people ARE NOT FOR SALE, and cannot be claimed by anyone other than the actual verifiable person in the profile). This is the technique that made Yelp a billion dollar business overnight… Build the profiles on people and businesses, give them abillity to claim and maintain the profile, give users all the power, and encourage reviews and activity, and THEY WILL COME. Smoke & Thunder is almost exactly like Yelp in every way, just not as heavy on the restaurant reviews.

    Speaking of restauarants, many were howling mad to find out that Yelp profiles has been pre-generated for their business (or submitted by their users along with a photograph of the restaurant!), and users posting all kinds of good and bad reviews about them. Many cried foul, cried copyright infringement, etc.  Those that did were laughed out of court, and for good reason. Information should not be supressed whether its a restaurant serving toxic food, or a gun company selling crappy guns. It actually goes way beyond that, because Yelp is simply the largest, most in-depth business directory for consumers in the world and a great research and reference tool.

    Apparently you missed everything, didn’t bother to contact me, read my profile, my policies, or my disclaimers. I guess you missed the whole Yelp REVOLUTION too. Much of the current fair use legal decisions come from websites that pre-generate profiles on people, businesses, and organization, and then invite the world to learn, comment, review, and socialize… all perfectly legitimate. Nobody is immune from being profiled, linked, reviewed, praised, or villified. You are next to be profiled on Smoke & Thunder.

    It’s sad how little most people know about fair use, profile/review websites, and the internet at large. You can begin correcting yourself anytime.

    • I love it, there’s a response inbound right now to my blog.

      I have read, and I’ve been digging through your site too.  You’re a liar.  Period!

    • Here’s my response, I do find it telling that you don’t even really address the things I said in this post.  Instead you ran with some cookie cutter crap that you’re smearing across the net.  Guess what, doesn’t change the fact you’re behaving like a dick.  I have never had any web company just make a profile of me that is publicly available.