NotPetya — Tale of a Global Cyberattack

❝ It was a perfect sunny summer afternoon in Copenhagen when the world’s largest shipping conglomerate began to lose its mind…

The gift shop also houses a technology help center, a single desk manned by IT troubleshooters next to the shop’s cashier…Across the street, an IT administrator named Henrik Jensen was working in another part of the Maersk compound, an ornate white-stone building that in previous centuries had served as the royal archive of maritime maps and charts. (Henrik Jensen is not his real name.)…Jensen was busy preparing a software update for Maersk’s nearly 80,000 employees when his computer spontaneously restarted…

❝ Jensen looked up to ask if anyone else in his open-plan office of IT staffers had been so rudely interrupted. And as he craned his head, he watched every other computer screen around the room blink out in rapid succession.

“I saw a wave of screens turning black. Black, black, black. Black black black black black,” he says. The PCs, Jensen and his neighbors quickly discovered, were irreversibly locked. Restarting only returned them to the same black screen.

That was how it started. A long, complex tale of a cyberattack that was more powerful than even the originators of the attack could have predicted. A worthwhile read.

Sperm Bank delivery bike


Photo: Copenhagenize

A fertility clinic in Copenhagen wanted an easy way to transport biological materials in insulated storage through the city, and so commissioned the construction of the Sperm Bullitt.

The Sperm Bike is, like the company’s sperm donations, a Danish product and constructed around the Danish Bullitt cargo bike from Larry vs Harry.

Producing the Sperm Bike was no easy task. It was constructed by the Danish company 10 Tons – who specialise in zoological and botanical models as well as paleontologic reconstructions, including full-size whales and dinosaurs.

With the tail, the bike is 2.9 metres long and fully-loaded with… um… sperm… it weighs 50 kg.

Thanks, Ursa

Ski slope in Copenhagen to be built atop a power station – and, uh, it blows smoke rings!

A collaboration led by the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has announced that it’s been selected to design a new waste-to-power station on the outskirts of Copenhagen. In an attempt to unify an industrial area and residential housing, the project will turn the vast roofing expanse of the power station into an Alpine ski resort. Skiers will begin their downward journey from the top of the smokestack, which will also pump out smoke rings every time a ton of carbon dioxide is produced to remind citizens of the impact of power consumption.

The radical design is being prepared for a waste-to-energy and recycling company called Amagerforbrænding, which already operates an incineration plant that converts the waste from five districts into electricity and heating…

Denmark and Sweden both use a fair amount of waste-to-power conversion for generating electricity. Most of what they burn is biomass remaining from timber industries.

In fact, the good dude we get ½-ton “spools” of trim and slabs from – to use as kindling all winter – is installing a 6-figure machine at his sawmill to produce biomass of the most efficient sizes for use in electricity generation by new powerplants in-state.

Botched suicide bomber busted in Copenhagen hotel – UPDATED


Bomb squad techs let their robot in to deal with suspect’s bag

Police in Copenhagen have arrested a man in connection with what appears to be a botched bombing.

The man was apprehended shortly after a minor explosion at about 1:30pm in the bathroom of Hotel Jørgensen, located near Nørreport Station, the capital’s busiest commuter railway hub.

Police arrested the man, reportedly carrying identification from two foreign countries, in nearby H.C. Ørsted Park with a bag attached to his waist. The area was quickly cordoned off, and despite injuries to his face and arm the man was left immobilised on the ground for about five hours until a bomb squad robot could remove the bag and detonate it.

The detonation could be heard throughout the immediate area, but a police spokesman declined to comment on the bag’s possible contents, saying only that it was ‘no longer a concern’.

At about 8:00pm the man was taken by ambulance to hospital under police escort where he was treated by a medical team wearing bomb squad suits as a precaution.

A police spokesman said a terrorism emergency had not been declared. And officials from Copenhagen Airport and national rail operator DSB said they had not increased security measures.

However, the terror level has been raised to new heights throughout the United States. Especially New York and Floriduh. [/sarcasm]

UPDATE: The Danish police raised the terror level a fraction of a notch, this morning, to “information awareness”, e.g. everyone stay in touch.

UPDATE: Looks like the dude was preparing a letter bomb to mail to the Danish newspaper “guilty” of publishing Mohammed cartoons.

‘Fourteen days to seal history’s judgment on this generation’

Today 56 newspapers in 45 countries take the unprecedented step of speaking with one voice through a common editorial. We do so because humanity faces a profound emergency.

Unless we combine to take decisive action, climate change will ravage our planet, and with it our prosperity and security. The dangers have been becoming apparent for a generation. Now the facts have started to speak: 11 of the past 14 years have been the warmest on record, the Arctic ice-cap is melting and last year’s inflamed oil and food prices provide a foretaste of future havoc. In scientific journals the question is no longer whether humans are to blame, but how little time we have got left to limit the damage. Yet so far the world’s response has been feeble and half-hearted.

Climate change has been caused over centuries, has consequences that will endure for all time and our prospects of taming it will be determined in the next 14 days. We call on the representatives of the 192 countries gathered in Copenhagen not to hesitate, not to fall into dispute, not to blame each other but to seize opportunity from the greatest modern failure of politics. This should not be a fight between the rich world and the poor world, or between east and west. Climate change affects everyone, and must be solved by everyone.

The science is complex but the facts are clear. The world needs to take steps to limit temperature rises to 2C, an aim that will require global emissions to peak and begin falling within the next 5-10 years. A bigger rise of 3-4C — the smallest increase we can prudently expect to follow inaction — would parch continents, turning farmland into desert. Half of all species could become extinct, untold millions of people would be displaced, whole nations drowned by the sea. The controversy over emails by British researchers that suggest they tried to suppress inconvenient data has muddied the waters but failed to dent the mass of evidence on which these predictions are based.

Continue reading

G20 summit will test resolve on greener economy

Daylife/Getty Images

A G20 summit next week will test leading countries’ appetite to fight climate change after spending trillions bailing out banks and shoring up the global economy…

“We need a very clear signal that the G20 views this as broader than fixing a financial crisis,” said Achim Steiner, executive director of the UN Environment Program.

“When you see $100 billion going into rescuing one or two companies you have to ask yourself is this the most rational way of dealing with a (climate) threat that will have far greater economic consequences and human suffering…”

G20 powers could confirm next Thursday their commitment to forge a new climate treaty in Copenhagen, and urge spending wherever possible of a $2 trillion-3 trillion global stimulus on “green” causes, analysts say…

Applying environmental conditions to stimulus spending may also pare state aid and protectionism fears. But the fight against recession inevitably means that the climate cash left will have to lever private sector money.

Governments could get more for their buck by guaranteeing private sector loans, or under-writing “green bonds” where pension and insurance funds invested in clean energy…

“(Making) government spending work very, very hard in terms of leveraging private capital… that fits very much with the Copenhagen agenda,” HSBC analyst Nick Robins said.

It all begins to look like the world’s largest PR campaign and balancing act.

Though – I think – it is possible to use the Keynesian amendments to government support dependent upon Green conditions. I think we can count on that from the Obama delegation and at least lip service from Gordon Brown and Angela Merkel. The latter two are sneaking up on elections and look ready to topple over to the Right at the drop of a single molecule of fossil fuel.

Climate Scientists admit to understatement


Daylife/Getty Images

The economic impact of global warming has been grossly underestimated and scientists must warn that inaction will spell disaster says top economist and climate change expert Nicholas Stern.

Stern told 2,000 climate scientists meeting in Copenhagen that they had failed to clearly tell humanity what it faces if global temperatures reach the upper range of forecasts made by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC).

“There has been lots of scientific information on 2.0 and 3.0 degrees Celsius (3.6 and 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit), but you have to tell people loudly and clearly just how difficult 4.0 or 5.0 would be,” he said.

New findings show that these projections were vastly understated, scientists here said…

Stern, whose 2006 Stern Review has become the benchmark for calculating the economic cost of tackling climate change, conceded that his report had also fallen short in assessing the potential consequences of global warming…

Katherine Richardson, head of the Danish government’s Commission on Climate Change Policy and a co-organiser of the meeting, agreed that scientists had not done a perfect job in getting the message out.

“Most of us have been trained as scientists to not get our hands dirty by talking to politicians. But we now realise that what we are dealing with is so complicated and urgent that we have to help to make sure the results are understood,” she told AFP.

Of course, if you confuse skepticism with sophistry in your own mind, please return to sitting on your thumb.