Comments

Dr. I. Needtob AtheNovember 4, 2016 12:30 PM

Box office appeal will always be inversely proportional to scientific accuracy.

Joshua R. PoulsonNovember 4, 2016 12:32 PM

This historical techno wizardry is why the package Dustin Kirkland's "hollywood" was made (package available for Ubuntu) and even showed up in a dream sequence in Mr. Robot recently.

wumpusNovember 4, 2016 1:59 PM

From a comment on WarGames: "Despite a few obvious Hollywood exaggerations (I'm looking at you, talking A.I.)"

Somehow I suspect that Hollywood figured out pretty quickly* that people will simply refuse to read the screen. It took decades before software UI design learned that lesson.

* presumably people had to read the screen in the silent era. I'd hate to think how quickly they unlearned it in the talkie era.

AJWMNovember 4, 2016 5:11 PM

@Wumpus -

It's also a lot easier for the film distributor to dub in a new soundtrack than film a new screenshot in the local language. Although subtitles would work.

DHSNovember 5, 2016 1:01 AM

@Buddy, Cloak and Dagger is already mentioned in the article.
"In Cloak And Dagger we again saw the "kid saving the world" narrative with a riff on WarGames following a video game cartridge that for some reason holds secret military information that can be unlocked by reaching a certain score."

Jasper MaskelyneNovember 5, 2016 12:35 PM

@DHS
"a video game cartridge that for some reason holds secret military information that can be unlocked by reaching a certain score."

The vast majority of computer "users" will literally drop their jaws if you open a browser, hit CTRL+L, type in schneier.com, and hit the enter key.

"My GOD, Maw! He DIDN"T EVEN TOUCH THE MOUSE!! He must be A HACKER!!!"

Jesus wept.

Slime Mold with MustardNovember 5, 2016 3:01 PM

@ Dr. I. Needtob Athe

It is worse than that. The second article, on the 1990's claims that Michael Largent was caught because he used the names of people from a film: Not so. The salami slicing technique gets caught because there are well established rules for handling fractions, and rules about who is allowed to create accounts (not the people who handle the money, not even in the same area). Violations show up during decent audits. Popular journalism is barely ahead of Hollywood in accuracy.

What surprises me about the case is that they got the Feds to prosecute a $50,000 fraud. I can't get the security guards in my building interested in a 50K diversion. Must be the Google clout.

Clive RobinsonNovember 6, 2016 2:22 PM

@ Kim the Whale,

A little piece of less known Ian Fleming history for you.

When "doing his thing" in the Rockefeller Center[1] one of his "most secret" tasks was to find and secure a very very large supply of coloured pencils...

Ian Fleming had to persuade the UK Trade rep there of the importance of this order without revealing what they were for.

There are a number of stories about how he achieved it some involving bottles of spirits, show girls and other human vices, but none appear to be actually true. The point is that however he did it he did not reveal that the coloured pencils were destined for a number of old country houses and their like not far from modern day Milton Keynes in the UK. Most notable of which was Bletchley Park, where the coloured pencils were used to identify traffic circuits/nets in the Axis forces. The primary users were those working in association with the goings on under Gordan Welchman in Hut 6 with respect to traffic analysis.

[1] I've mentioned here in past the problem with the OTT cipher machine used to apply a One Time (Pad) Tape to telex messages out of the Rockefeller Center, and it's part in the birth of TEMPEST, and some of what MI5 got upto for both GCHQ and the NSA as well as the CIA.

kevinmNovember 6, 2016 4:40 PM

Three Days of the Condor (1975) is another good movie in the class. It does not feature any script kiddies but does show some good ICT tradecraft

Insider ThreatNovember 7, 2016 7:02 PM

They missed the short scenes from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Score_(2001_film)

From Wikipedia:

Nick's trusted associate Steven (Jamie Harrold) hacks into the Custom House's security system to obtain the bypass codes, allowing them to temporarily manipulate the alert protocols of the system during the heist. Steven is caught, however, by a corrupt systems administrator who extorts Nick for $50,000 for the information.

Not to mention, a couple scenes of some extreme deep cover social engineering.

Of all the kiddie hacker movies out, until recently I always fancied this as the most currently apt.

TJNovember 10, 2016 2:07 PM

Allow me to save you all from the new-internet hipster content
80s{
tron
wargames
superman 3
electric dreams
prime risk
revenge of the nerds
weird science
ferris bueller
pretty in pink
}

90s{
sneakers
double o kid
terminator judgement day
jurrasic park
lawnmower man
goldeneye
tommy boy
under siege 2
hackers
the net
johnny neumonic
virtuosity
independence day
masterminds
the office
}

2000s{
takedown
anti-trust
swordfish
the core
oceans eleven
the italian job
firewall
pulse
live free or die hard
the girl with the dragon tattoo
blackhat
the fifth estate
mr.robot(not a movie..)
}

incomplete even within the movie group by the way. They included mr.robot but not the three horsemen from x-files, or whiz-kids or riptide which pre-date everything.

Leave a comment

Allowed HTML: <a href="URL"> • <em> <cite> <i> • <strong> <b> • <sub> <sup> • <ul> <ol> <li> • <blockquote> <pre>

Photo of Bruce Schneier by Per Ervland.

Schneier on Security is a personal website. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of IBM Resilient.