British Intelligence to Wi-Fi Hunters: Keep Nose Out

On family holiday in London, we were riding in a taxi out to the Imperial War Museum. As we passed the riverfront headquarters of MI6, a.k.a. the Secret Intelligence Service, my wife happened to be futzing with her iPhone. A list of Wi-Fi networks popped up. At the top: a network called KeepNoseOut.

Coincidence? I’d like to think not. I like this even better than the Dutch cafe that labeled its Wi-Fi network BuyAnotherCupYouCheapskate.

London is of course full of happy surprises for American visitors. The “chewable toothbrush,” for instance, for sale in a tube station:

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And, in the Parliamentary Bookshop in Parliament Square, I spotted a single American book: Nudge, by Thaler and Sunstein (see earlier blog posts here), which has been embraced in something of a bear hug by the Conservative Party here.

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I also spotted (but failed to photograph) a tube ad for a personal health kit to fight MRSA and other “superbugs.” You’re supposed to buy such a kit and bring it to the hospital if you happen to wind up there, since, as we know, doctors do not always wash their hands when they should.


griff

Welcome to London!

...I don't know if you've spotted any of the vending machines in the 'Gents' which dispense both condoms and headache tablets ?

If you get a chance, I'd recommend walking along the Thames bank from the Tower of London, over Tower Bridge and back along the south bank of the Thames to Southwark Cathedral and beyond - up to Tate Modern & millenium bridge even - impressive views any many neat things to see.

Mike B

If the state of British dental hygiene is any indication Id probably avoid that chewable toothbrush if I were you.

Quill

The MRSA scare has been demonstrated as bogus over and over. Check out http://www.badscience.net/category/mrsa/

Jo

Ugh, those ads for the supposed anti-superbug kit annoy me to no end - especially how they are apparently ESSENTIAL for anyone going into hospital, as well as for the elderly, and pregnant women. They're ?14.99 a pop, too. Scaremongering and insidious.

Ted

HAHA

The Keep nose Out almost seems TOO perfect a fit. Would they really put something liek that...it is like telling a kid not to do something. Almost baiting people.

http://www.justinpopovic.com

frankenduf

they might not play rock,paper,scissors either- "How to win every argument" with a sledgehammer?- hello? i think gun beats hammer

AR

Yeah, those "superbug" kit ads have shown up everywhere on the tube - just in the last week or so, as far as I can tell. Like the other posters, I'm a) a bit dubious and b) annoyed by the attempted fear-mongering.

Q

No first-rate, self-respecting intelligence organization would have an open wireless network like that - it would be wired and have fixed, controlled access points. Probably just someone being funny.

Alison

Yes, I agree with the last post. No way that the MI6 has a wireless network for anyone on the street to join with a lucky password guess!

Lis Riba

My last trip to London, I snapped a photo of a vending machine near the airport tube stop -- it sold BOOKS!

Nothing that I wanted to read, but I considered it cool nonetheless.

Lis Riba

Regarding network names, I've noticed that some people actually name their wifi networks for their street address -- "123 Main St"

I wonder if that's a theft risk, informing potential burglars which houses may have expensive computer equipment.

When we finally got our own home wifi, we briefly considered hacker-deterrent names, such as VirusResearchLab...

dan

thanks for coming to london and helping us prop up our economy. american, european & japanese readers will be pleased to know that their dollar/euro/yen goes a lot further these days thanks to our crumbling pound.

you might want to get some last minute christmas shopping jaguar motors co., woolworths & the post office are going cheap..

Vincent Clement

Does anyone actually use their iPhone as a phone?

Uncle Billy WarDriver

You can tell your access point not to advertise itself. Not trying to tell James Bond how to run his business. It's just rare for the typical home user to know this.