Free professional security advice for Palestinian hackers

First of all, welcome. I am glad you found this page. Please don’t hack it. Who am I? I am one of many people in the computer security world who have great sympathy for the Palestinian people. We agree with you that the Palestinian people deserve to live in peace. We let our politicians know […]

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Thank you Layla, for all that you gave to us, 2004-2013

A photo snapped in August: Layla Cobb, 2004-2013 This is just a short note to all who knew and loved our Layla. Earlier this week she ended her journey here in San Diego, peacefully and with loving hands upon her. Layla was not only a joy to us and those who met her, she was […]

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Adrenalectomy, from pain to promising signs of progress

This is a short note to record the successful execution of a laproscopic adrenalectomy by Dr. Allan Gamagami at Sharp Memorial Hospital on August 16, namely my left adrenalectomy. I talked about the need for this procedure in Cobb’s Got Conn’s, but not because I enjoy talking about myself. Okay, I do enjoy talking about […]

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Robot or not? Robotic surgery and risk, part one

A security geek goes to see a surgeon about having an operation. The surgeon says, “We may use the robot.” The geek thinks: “Robot! Cool. What OS does it use? Is it on the network? Has anyone hacked this type of robot yet?” I am that geek and I will get to those questions in a […]

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Cobb’s got Conn’s? Probably, but I go through Adrenal Vein Sampling (AVS) to be sure

[Updated 6/11/13: It’s official, I do have Conn syndrome. The nephrologist just called to say my AVS test results were, direct quote: “Stunning!”] This post is about my potential diagnosis of Conn syndrome and how that could lead to a healthier, more energetic life. If you have high blood pressure, dodgy heartbeat, nasty leg cramps, […]

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Sorry I’ve been out of touch (my adrenal adenoma is to blame)

Just a quick post to let folks know that I came through my recent medical procedure unscathed (apart from a small hole below the belt line that is healing nicely). For the sake of other folks out there who may need to undergo adrenal venous sampling I am writing up the procedure, the reason for […]

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Cobb’s blog is back, after dealing with WordPress and Linux server hacks

If you have missed this blog lately, that’s because it was offline for several weeks while I rebuilt it after a nasty case of criminal hacking forced it off the ‘net. What’s that you say? You’re shocked that a server belonging to security expert Stephen Cobb got hacked. Well, I’m not. Not surprised that is…because […]

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So Long 2012: Year of multiple infosec anniversaries

30 years ago this month, December 1982, I sat down at my first personal computer, a KayPro II, and started learning word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and something called an operating system (in this case CP/M). I got my first book contract 5 years later, in other words, 25 years ago this year. Within 5 years […]

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Boxing Day: The play time holiday (that comes with a touch of giving)

Despite the fact that I am now an agnostic citizen of the United States of America, my upbringing in a church-going protestant family in England means that for me, the day after Christmas Day will always be Boxing Day. And Boxing Day is my favorite day of the year. Many people in America are unfamiliar […]

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Facial recognition technology and the Right of Publicity: Could this hot tech trend violate state laws?

If someone uses a photograph of your face for commercial purposes they could be breaking the law. In an odd way, this statement connects two areas of my life, information security and movie making. Photographs of faces are used in some security systems and lots of movies. When you make a movie it is standard […]

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Paying Forward: Giving a little back while we do the paperwork

Why so quiet here on Cobbsblog? To be honest I took the month of July to recover from our medical nightmare in June. But now I’m back and working on paying back a little if I can. My decision to document my wife’s atrocious treatment had mixed results but many of them were favorable. We […]

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And on the seventh day: Relief, rest, and ruminations on responsibility

If my wife’s pain relief nightmare began on Wednesday of last week, then the seventh day of that nightmare was yesterday. I am thankful to report that the day went well and the nightmare may now be over, although it wasn’t actually a nightmare, it was a reality, one we had to live through, and […]

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Why day 6 is really day 3355 in Chey Cobb’s chronic pain management nightmare

Day 6 and we are keeping hope alive (despite day one, day two, day three, day four, and day five). In a moment I will explain why day 6 this is more like day 3355, but first an update. As the saying goes: My wife is resting uncomfortably. She has an appointment with a new […]

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Day 5: Why not palpate and evaluate?

Chey is feeling slightly better today as the Ativan they gave her in the psych ward wears off. Still lots of pain and some slurred speech. As of 4PM nobody from Sharp HealthCare has been in touch. AFAIK, their patient advocate delivered his report at 1PM today in the full knowledge of how badly Chey […]

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Day 4 of our medical nightmare: Observations and FAQ

We spent Sunday, June 10, at home in our new apartment surrounded by boxes that have not been unpacked. Spending 3 days in any kind of medical facility will blow a hole in the best laid moving plans. Coming out of the facility in a heap of pain will only make the hole bigger. Chey […]

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Day 3 of our San Diego healthcare nightmare

The sad saga of an epic #fail in healthcare continued today. Chey Cobb, the disabled 50-something IT professional, former Senior Technical Security Officer at the NRO and author of Network Security for Dummies, is now home and resting after being placed in a psych ward for 3 days. Her pain is still not managed. She […]

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Day 2 of painful detention in San Diego, the new Cuckoo’s Nest nightmare scenario?

As I start writing this, at 3PM Pacific, my wife is still detained in a secure psychiatric facility where they are not only withholding medical treatment, but alternating between ignoring her pleas for help and harassing her with requests to sit up and get out of her room and participate in activities with others. What […]

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