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> Buners, The wonderful world of commlinks
Chrysalis
post Sep 1 2009, 04:43 PM
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Greets,

There are numerous things in RL that you can do to stop people from tracing you.

Let's say that those and another 10+ methods exist. What are the countersurveillance options available in 2072.

I think one of the more obvious is that your commlink is running a simulated commlink. The simulated commlink is as simple as a deletion. The commlink then pretends to be another one of a million commlinks in existence. Another option is that the commlink is hardware hacked and when you turn off the power, the whole commlink wipes itself.

Cloning commlinks. You walks past someone with a cheap commlink and your agent clones your commlink for the calls.

You can also stick to cheap prepaid commlinks, with limited amount of credit. You want to get rid of it. You drop it on the ground.

Any other thoughts on how to run countersurveillance for commlinks?
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BlueMax
post Sep 1 2009, 04:52 PM
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Most of the list are achieved through Spoof. The last is the disposable commlink from Arsenal.

The best is to be a TM. Only other TMs can Track you and you Spoof new IDs at will.


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Chrysalis
post Sep 1 2009, 04:54 PM
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Yeah, but what if the opposition has a TM?

Is this the point where on the Matrix side you concede that every TM is Neo?

Besides the game world has the perception that TMs can break into any system, any time, any place and the worse part? They are right.
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BlueMax
post Sep 1 2009, 05:16 PM
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Technomancer battles were potent in SR4 in that it took some time to boot back up if another TM crashed your node. In SR4A, nodes come up lickity split.

*I* concede that Technomancers are Neo. There are three at my table, so I suffer from their ability to Thread and Sprite up to infinity on complex forms.

This is why TMs were hunted and why they still may be hunted. For various results of the hunt.

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otakusensei
post Sep 1 2009, 05:18 PM
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QUOTE (Chrysalis @ Sep 1 2009, 11:54 AM) *
Yeah, but what if the opposition has a TM?

Is this the point where on the Matrix side you concede that every TM is Neo?

Besides the game world has the perception that TMs can break into any system, any time, any place and the worse part? They are right.



They can't necessarily get into any system in the world, but if they do they have their way with it. Then it takes another TM to find out about it and trace them, if they do it right.

Technomancers cheat, simple as that. Play a hacker and be happy that you don't have a karma sink, but aware that you're never going to operate on their level. Just like mundanes becoming masters of astral combat, not gonna happen.
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Bugfoxmaster
post Sep 1 2009, 06:34 PM
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TM's don't quite cheat - they're as much cheaters in hacking as mages are cheaters in normal reality...

Oh wait.

Anyways, their ability to sprite and thread up their CF's (mentioned earlier) does make them able to get into virtually any system, AND have their way with it, as you put it. A TM makes the matrix their bitch, at least with the right skills and karma... Then again, that's sort of the point.
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otakusensei
post Sep 1 2009, 06:52 PM
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QUOTE (Bugfoxmaster @ Sep 1 2009, 02:34 PM) *
TM's don't quite cheat - they're as much cheaters in hacking as mages are cheaters in normal reality...

Oh wait.

Anyways, their ability to sprite and thread up their CF's (mentioned earlier) does make them able to get into virtually any system, AND have their way with it, as you put it. A TM makes the matrix their bitch, at least with the right skills and karma... Then again, that's sort of the point.


Any normal system with no creativity applied to the setup, yes. That "virtually any system" part is important. A clever GM can keep them in check, usually without the GM fiat or ridiculously spiraling node ratings.

The best way to stop a TM is with another TM. That's why the witch hunt turned into a recruitment drive as soon as the corps realized the problem was bigger than that Otaku business and not likely to stay quiet or go away.
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crizh
post Sep 1 2009, 08:20 PM
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There is even a Security Technomancer in Unwired, p68.

It's not much but it's a start. Fighting TM's head on might not be the best use of precious resources, better to spot their Resonance Signature and track them down in the meat.

I just had a pretty cool idea about using Dissonance Pools for secure systems. Jormungand was intended to create Dissonance Wells in the systems it infected. Much of that hardware must have been trashed in the Crash but a canny Corp might have just isolated and studied it once the Worm was destroyed and the Matrix rebuilt.

It sure would be hard to hack a system with a Rating 6+ Dissonance Pool for a TM. Ordinary users shouldn't notice anything out of the ordinary however.
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otakusensei
post Sep 1 2009, 10:28 PM
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QUOTE (crizh @ Sep 1 2009, 03:20 PM) *
There is even a Security Technomancer in Unwired, p68.

It's not much but it's a start. Fighting TM's head on might not be the best use of precious resources, better to spot their Resonance Signature and track them down in the meat.

I just had a pretty cool idea about using Dissonance Pools for secure systems. Jormungand was intended to create Dissonance Wells in the systems it infected. Much of that hardware must have been trashed in the Crash but a canny Corp might have just isolated and studied it once the Worm was destroyed and the Matrix rebuilt.

It sure would be hard to hack a system with a Rating 6+ Dissonance Pool for a TM. Ordinary users shouldn't notice anything out of the ordinary however.


That's true, but it's also like saying that it's hard for people to steal stuff from your house it you have a massive wasp nest in the living room. Aside from the bad juju, you don't want to deal with the stuff that shows up...
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Chrysalis
post Sep 2 2009, 01:17 AM
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I think, from a more practical viewpoint, that it is the equivalent of having 10 million nuyen security system to protect a 100 nuyen commlink.

So in short, if you don't have a pet TM, you are fucked on having any secure communication.
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otakusensei
post Sep 2 2009, 02:14 AM
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QUOTE (Chrysalis @ Sep 1 2009, 09:17 PM) *
I think, from a more practical viewpoint, that it is the equivalent of having 10 million nuyen security system to protect a 100 nuyen commlink.

So in short, if you don't have a pet TM, you are fucked on having any secure communication.


Stay low key. Commlink in Hidden Mode with a high signal rating non-standard radio that is only used for secure communication.

If you get someone's attention, drop off the grid for a bit. Use disposable commlinks and black MSP drop boxes. Only speak freely in person, devise a personal code for brief communication, or start using traditional one time pads. Slow, but unhackable unless someone gets the cipher or you live in a Neil Stephenson novel.

Alternately just use encryption, but remember it isn't the "encrypt and forget" solution it is today. Signals encryption can't be listened to until a key is generated. If you and the person you're speaking to are within signal range of each other you can be pretty sure you aren't going to be over heard. Combine that with the first suggestion, and some decent IC setup in creative ways, and you should be pretty secure.

If you have a GM that believes a fun game includes a TM sneaking around every corner, hacking all your 'ware, there isn't much you can do though. Ditto playing an over active TM who feels the needs to hack anything that moves just because he can.
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Jaid
post Sep 2 2009, 03:16 AM
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QUOTE (crizh @ Sep 1 2009, 03:20 PM) *
There is even a Security Technomancer in Unwired, p68.

It's not much but it's a start. Fighting TM's head on might not be the best use of precious resources, better to spot their Resonance Signature and track them down in the meat.

I just had a pretty cool idea about using Dissonance Pools for secure systems. Jormungand was intended to create Dissonance Wells in the systems it infected. Much of that hardware must have been trashed in the Crash but a canny Corp might have just isolated and studied it once the Worm was destroyed and the Matrix rebuilt.

It sure would be hard to hack a system with a Rating 6+ Dissonance Pool for a TM. Ordinary users shouldn't notice anything out of the ordinary however.

QUOTE (otakusensei @ Sep 1 2009, 05:28 PM) *
That's true, but it's also like saying that it's hard for people to steal stuff from your house it you have a massive wasp nest in the living room. Aside from the bad juju, you don't want to deal with the stuff that shows up...

oh, you're acting like having a horde of dissonant technomancers and sprites throwing DDOS parties in your server so it all traces back to your company is a bad thing =P (hey, it worked for geneva... er... i mean... dangit)
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DarkKindness
post Sep 2 2009, 04:38 PM
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QUOTE (otakusensei @ Sep 1 2009, 09:14 PM) *
Stay low key. Commlink in Hidden Mode with a high signal rating non-standard radio that is only used for secure communication.

If you get someone's attention, drop off the grid for a bit. Use disposable commlinks and black MSP drop boxes. Only speak freely in person, devise a personal code for brief communication, or start using traditional one time pads. Slow, but unhackable unless someone gets the cipher or you live in a Neil Stephenson novel.

Alternately just use encryption, but remember it isn't the "encrypt and forget" solution it is today. Signals encryption can't be listened to until a key is generated. If you and the person you're speaking to are within signal range of each other you can be pretty sure you aren't going to be over heard. Combine that with the first suggestion, and some decent IC setup in creative ways, and you should be pretty secure.

If you have a GM that believes a fun game includes a TM sneaking around every corner, hacking all your 'ware, there isn't much you can do though. Ditto playing an over active TM who feels the needs to hack anything that moves just because he can.


Laser Link your commlinks, direct datajack-to-datajack communication for those who have them, network the commlinks and cut them off from the Matrix... there are a few other options for secure communications, but I agree with the last point here.
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otakusensei
post Sep 2 2009, 05:32 PM
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QUOTE (DarkKindness @ Sep 2 2009, 11:38 AM) *
Laser Link your commlinks, direct datajack-to-datajack communication for those who have them, network the commlinks and cut them off from the Matrix... there are a few other options for secure communications, but I agree with the last point here.


Note that laser and microwave links both require that targets stay stationary and within visual range while communicating. Direct cable connections (I assume you aren't meaning wireless datajacks) are a good option too as are skinlink connections. But I wasn't mentioning them as you should be able to find a secure way of communication if you're already in the same general area.
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Chrysalis
post Sep 2 2009, 06:03 PM
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Hiow about face-to-face conversation if you are that close.

Maybe I am being thick, but I still think that burner cellphones don't work.

Alright, what about roving cellphone taps with voice identification? It's only a sprite or agent away.
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BlueMax
post Sep 2 2009, 06:10 PM
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QUOTE (Chrysalis @ Sep 2 2009, 10:03 AM) *
Hiow about face-to-face conversation if you are that close.

Maybe I am being thick, but I still think that burner cellphones don't work.

Alright, what about roving cellphone taps with voice identification? It's only a sprite or agent away.


This brings up the question: What level of communication?

I think that some may be assuming TacNet or other sensor and data sharing software. Others still may assume subvocal relaying through commlinks.

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Chrysalis
post Sep 2 2009, 06:13 PM
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Same as on skype you both send data (attachments) and talk (voice).

This is not about Spec ops, this is about working, wether ordering a pizza or setting up a meet with Mr Johnson.
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otakusensei
post Sep 2 2009, 09:21 PM
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QUOTE (Chrysalis @ Sep 2 2009, 01:13 PM) *
Same as on skype you both send data (attachments) and talk (voice).

This is not about Spec ops, this is about working, wether ordering a pizza or setting up a meet with Mr Johnson.


Ah, then you're boned.

Without maintaining a certain level of paranoia you will not be able to keep your communications secure. The downside of communications is that both sides need to maintain the same level of paranoia, and Hungry Howie isn't nearly as paranoid as you. You will have to break your communications into "Stuff I don't care if the world knows" and "Stuff no one must know about". For "Stuff no one must know" there are multiple ways to conduct communications in person and over the matrix with a reasonable level of security, for everything else there are throw away commlinks.

Because honestly, you'll get sick of Howie calling you every night asking you reorder. You think advertising is bad now, imagine if you could still see it with your eyes closed...
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