[cryptography] philosophical question about strengths and attacks at impossible levels

Ian G iang at iang.org
Sun Nov 21 06:59:14 EST 2010

On 21/11/10 8:37 AM, Marsh Ray wrote:
> On 11/19/2010 05:39 PM, Ian G wrote:

> I don't think this qualifies as a bait-and-switch scenario because the
> originally-advertised functionality (the bait) is still part of the
> package.


> Bait-and-switch would be more like a salesperson saying "No, I'm sorry
> we just ran out of the low-priced RSA certificates we advertised in the
> Sunday paper. But I have a fresh shipment of ECC EV certificates that
> only cost X times more...". Especially if the store had no intention of
> stocking enough of the advertised item to cover the anticipated demand.
> The best term for this that I can think of is plain old "exaggeration",
> but I don't feel like that really captures the idea. It's more that the
> claims are extended beyond their original domain, to the point where
> they may no longer apply.
> Perhaps there's not a word for this because it's simply taken for
> granted in marketing. E.g., "this bottled liquid is proven to prevent
> dehydration" is extended to imply "this particular bottled liquid will
> associate you in some way with others like these happy and popular
> off-duty lifeguards playing beach volleyball".

Yeah.  So, we are in the grey area of marketing.  The line between one 
thing and another is not fixed.  Maybe there is another term, or maybe not.

Terms and laws are just lines drawn on sand, and can be avoided or 
bypassed or shifted to suit the intention.  By the marketing guy, or by 
the attacker.

You go to the store and ask for the product that makes you like 
lifeguards, and they send you home with bottled water.  You're right, 
the product that they originally advertised doesn't exist, and this 
means that they couldn't have been breaking the law.

So not only have they baited your mind with one concept, and switched 
you to a purchase of a product, they've got you on their side, arguing 
their product is fairly marketed!

Maybe the best bait and switch;  by defining the term in law, the 
marketing profession allowed themselves lots and lots of protection, 
lots and lots of grey area, and a chance to look like good corporate 
citizens :)

While we're on marketing and other magic, I highly recommend doing some 
serious units on marketing at b-school or marketing school or somewhere. 
  It's a real eye-opener.  Most folk with engineering background have no 
idea, and typically make as many huge blunders about it as marketing 
folk make about tech.

A bit like internet tech and patent law ;)


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