Pine Nuts: Hackers Convention 2019 |

Pine Nuts: Hackers Convention 2019

There is no truth, as it turns out, to the rumor that Russian hackers plan to set off every car alarm in America at the same time, effectively making every man, woman and child crazy as a loon.

I know there is no truth to this rumor because I made it up.

Still, we have to believe there are far worse scenarios brewing out there. The question remains, who is smarter, the good-hearted cyber security folks, or the bad-ass criminal hackers? It probably changes from week to week.

Las Vegas hosted the annual Def-Con Hackers Conference last week and it was well attended. These are the good guys, over 20,000 of them, think of the brain power!

Were I in attendance at one of these Vegas hacker conventions, the first question I would ask would be, “Ah, what’s the best bet in the house?” The last time I asked that question I was seated next to a lady who was also playing a video poker game. I remember her lipstick was so bright that her martini glass flashed red when she lifted it. She gazed at me with her beautiful brown bloodshot eyes and said, “Honey, why do you suppose I’m sitting here and you are sitting there? That machine you’re playing pays 8/5 for a full house and a flush, where mine pays 9/6. Only a numbskull would sit where you are sitting.”

Well, that corked me up pretty tight and I decided to mind my own business while in a casino.

But I have to believe it might be pretty easy for a seasoned hacker to change the payout on a video poker machine just enough to pay his room and board, and leave no evidence to ever suspect anything was even amiss.

What is missing in the bad actor hacker’s DNA is a conscience. His brain cells are so plentiful that they effectively push his conscience right out of his head, and then that bandit can rob an old woman of her life’s savings and sleep all night long. Sad to say, but that hacker’s mother, father, siblings and friends failed him.

Are there any notorious female hackers? Apparently there are at least 10, and I would not want to play a game of “GO” with any of them. If my son were to ask one of them out on a date I would change all my passwords immediately.

I’ve only been hacked once, and that was enough. An enterprising gentleman in Japan hijacked a website of mine and asked me for a small fortune to buy it back. I gave him some free advice, not only for himself, but for the horse he rode in on, and built a new site. I’m still mad about that.

Well, let’s hope the good guys and girls can stay one step ahead of the creeps, and let’s thank our cyber security experts for their good energy when we see them … if we see them.

Learn more about McAvoy Layne at

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