Call us immediately if your child uses Kali Linux, squawks West Mids Police
Maybe stick to walking the beat instead of infosec advice, eh?
The National Crime Agency has publicly distanced itself from a poster urging parents to call police if their child has installed Kali Linux, Tor or – brace yourself – Discord.
Issued by West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit (WMROCU) via local area councils, the poster in question lists a slack handful of common infosec tools – as well as some that clearly have nothing to do with computer security.
Should your child install Kali Linux, virtual machines (the image on the poster looks like Virtualbox) or internet privacy tool Tor, West Midlands Police wants to know immediately. And if – heaven forfend – junior installs Metasploit, free VoIP service for gamers Discord or WiFi Pineapple, you might as well report straight to your nearest prison and abandon your tainted offspring forever.
“If you see any of these on their computer, or have a child you think is hacking, let us know so we can give advice and engage them into positive diversions,” intones the offending poster, forwarded to us by a reader and which we reproduce below in all its glory.
Observant readers will have spotted the National Crime Agency logo alongside that of the WMROCU. Strangely enough, the NCA was not at all impressed to have been linked with this obvious bollocks.
Good evening – the NCA was not involved in the production or release of this poster.
There are many tools which tech-savvy children use, some of which can be used for both legal & illegal purposes, so it is vital that parents and children know how these tools can be used safely.
— National Crime Agency (NCA) (@NCA_UK) February 13, 2020
The Register has emailed WMROCU via the address on the poster to ask some pertinent questions. If the coppers reply, we’ll update this article – though we have a sneaky feeling they’re probably hoping all of this goes away.
Snark aside, ignorance about infosec abounds. Even Metasploit, highlighted in the WMROCU poster as an example of nefarious hacking software, has entirely legitimate uses: a quick internet search for UK infosec courses shows plenty of syllabi that include how to use Metasploit as a white hat tool.
Let’s hope West Midlands Police learns something useful from this cockup. ®