Digital Fish in a Digital Barrel
May 17, 2017 10:39 AM   Subscribe

 
[Quick note: There's a catch-all Trump thread if folks want to talk about all the other stuff about the administration, but Trump's digital security practices can have their own thread here.]
posted by LobsterMitten at 10:47 AM on May 17 [2 favorites]


Thank you, LobsterMitten, for the link to the (most recent) thread o' dooooooooom.
posted by snortasprocket at 10:52 AM on May 17 [2 favorites]


We drove on a dirt access road through the middle of the golf course and spotted two open Wi-Fi networks, TrumpMembers and WelcomeToTrumpNationalGolfClub, that did not require a password to join.
I'm not saying those are honeypots set up by a foreign or criminal adversary to snoop on Mar-a-Lago members, but that would totally work.
posted by figurant at 11:02 AM on May 17 [24 favorites]


I found this absolutely mind blowing. It's like they didn't even think to try at all to game out how they might be targeted. Or, yea I guess it could be someone deliberately doing it as honeypots, although that seems unlikely...
posted by gemmy at 11:52 AM on May 17


Wow. Simply atrocious.
posted by redsparkler at 11:59 AM on May 17


Hmmph, I was on Doral grounds this year and the preceding year and it never occurred to me to nmap it. I will say that they were surprisingly half-assed in their guest wifi setup. Just a captive portal that stopped you and made you do a click-through, no validation of any kind.
posted by phearlez at 12:08 PM on May 17


I will say that they were surprisingly half-assed in their guest wifi setup. Just a captive portal that stopped you and made you do a click-through, no validation of any kind.

That's pretty standard for low-end hotels, but if you're touting yourself as a "luxury" anything, I imagine part of that luxury would be the security. Apparently, their security is as real as their gold (plated) fixtures.

Two items from the article:
Trump properties have been hacked before. Last year, the Trump hotel chain paid $50,000 to settle charges brought by the New York attorney general that it had not properly disclosed the loss of more than 70,000 credit card numbers and 302 Social Security numbers. Prosecutors alleged that hotel credit card systems were “the target of a cyber-attack” due to poor security. The company agreed to beef up its security; it’s not clear if the vulnerabilities we found violate that agreement. A spokesman for the New York attorney general declined comment.
I know Trump doesn't personally manage all of his properties, but this could have been a major black eye for any other candidate for public office.
As Politico has previously reported, Trump hotels and clubs are poorly guarded. We drove a car past the front of Mar-a-Lago and parked a boat near its lawn. We drove through the grounds of the Bedminster golf course and into the parking lot of the golf course in Sterling, Virginia. No one questioned us.
Sadly, relevant to this statement: how did you look? Were you dressed at or above the level of other guests? Did you stroll in like you belonged there? Were you of an ethnic majority, or at least not a significant ethnic minority, considering the population of the resort guests to be the population pool for comparison? As discussed previously, race and economic background are significant. As summarized by Kitteh, this could be another example of:
moderately affluent white dudes who think because they are moderately affluent white dudes that the rules don't apply to them. And yes, even small stuff counts. They may see it as a life hack, but I see it more as someone thinking themselves better than everyone else.
That's not a serious knock on the issue at hand (lax security), but at the same time, the security of luxury hotels on the personal level is often security theater: the appearance that the physical grounds are monitored and guarded, not that each guest must identify themselves as a guest to get into the facilities, and then periodically required to provide proper identification for extra security.

Physically securing a private facility that is nominally open to the public (assuming you have enough money, or again, look like you could have enough money) as if it were "the more traditional presidential retreat, the military-run Camp David" would both deter a number of guests from returning ("No one asked for my identification when I was here last time, the nerve of them!") and significantly increase costs to operate the facilities. I think the latter is more the issue for Trump Inc., because they could probably offset some of the former with the Trump base, the moderately well-to-do white dudes who want to play VIP for a weekend.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:32 PM on May 17 [3 favorites]


That's pretty standard for low-end hotels, but if you're touting yourself as a "luxury" anything, I imagine part of that luxury would be the security.

I don't think this really holds up. I stay at very expensive luxury hotels at least a couple of times a year, and I have seen zero correlation between the price of the room or the standard of the hotel and the security (or speed, for that matter) of their wifi setup.
posted by primethyme at 12:51 PM on May 17 [4 favorites]


I wonder if they were wearing Hi Vis Vests...
posted by plinth at 1:51 PM on May 17 [1 favorite]


Pointing a cantenna/potato gun/RPG at the President's digs seems pretty nervy, even if Dude ain't there.
posted by Ogre Lawless at 2:37 PM on May 17 [2 favorites]


Yeah I don't find the correlation to be security. What I find is that discount hotels give you wifi for free because it'll bring you in. Expensive hotels charge you because you either have enough money not to care (or it's a pittance percentage of your nightly cost) or because you're dumping it off on your employer along with every other expense.
posted by phearlez at 4:04 PM on May 17


I think the "cheap hotels offer free wifi, expensive hotels charge" rule held 5-10 years ago, but I've noticed more and more high-end places giving away the wifi. I assume this is because at this point if their guests don't want to pay for wireless internet they can just tether from their phone.

I think they make it up by charging like 50 bucks to park your car for the night.

I haven't noticed a correlation between wifi security and hotel price. I *have* noticed that big chains (your Starwoods, Hiltons, etc) are more likely to have somewhat sane security practices compared to smaller family concerns, like Trump.
posted by potrzebie at 11:51 PM on May 17


The main trend I've seen is that business hotels seem to charge outrageous amounts, as they know you'll just expense it. (esp. if the faraday-type properties of their building stops you tethering).
posted by ominous_paws at 5:30 AM on May 18


High end hotels use the money on chandeliers and ass kissing concierges, wifi security is #378 on their list or priorities.
posted by benzenedream at 8:00 AM on May 18


zero correlation between the price of the room or the standard of the hotel and the security (or speed, for that matter) of their wifi setup

I have found the inverse to be true: the "better" the hotel, the more likely that wifi is a paid add-on rather than free and easy.
posted by Meatbomb at 9:27 PM on May 18


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