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Archive for the ‘Security Help’ Category



Two Windows XP Vulnerabilities

Thursday, December 16th, 2004

A Tale of Two Vulnerabilities

It was the best of browsers, it was the worst of browsers…

On November 17, a Danish security firm discovered two Windows XP vulnerabilities—one was with SP2 and the other with Internet Explorer6. Both were found on systems that were completely up-to-date (scary). These two exploits basically trick the security center and IE into thinking that the sites you may be viewing are completely safe… Continue reading

Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer

Thursday, December 16th, 2004

This is a cool analyzing tool from Microsoft. With this diagnostics program you can run a security check on your system and see where you might be lacking. The tool was made primarily for people in the IT industry who wanted to check their networks for holes, but it works on standalone systems like a champ. Sorry 9x’ers (i.e.95/98/ME) this one’s all XP and 2000 in addition to having Internet… Continue reading

Explicit Permissions

Thursday, December 16th, 2004

I think you guys are really going to enjoy this week’s security tip. It’s a really cool way to secure files using “specific rights”. This is ideal for people who share a computer with others in the house and want to keep their private information secure.

Windows XP home and Pro give you a great amount of control over your files and by logging in through Safe Mode

Q:
What kind of attachments can contain viruses?

A:
Basically, anything that is executable (able to run). You’re generally safe with picture files, text files, and the like. However, it still pays to scan first.

Here is a (very) short list of the most common to watch out for:

exe
zip
scr
vbs
bat
com
pif
asp
doc
xls

Virus, Trojan, Worm

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2004

Q:
What is the difference between a Virus, Trojan, and Worm?

A:
Basically, they all fall under the generally category of “viruses”. However, there are a few distinctions.

Virus – Technically, a virus infects another file (attaches or inserts itself into it). They usually infect program files or MS Office documents. From there, it can replicate, do damage, etc. Unlike a worm, these do not function as a… Continue reading

Worst Virus Ever

Monday, November 22nd, 2004

Q:
I received an e-mail from a friend describing the “worst virus ever,” but then I saw a report on the news that it was in fact a hoax. How can I tell the difference between a real and a hoax virus before I start to panic?

A:
There are several ways to determine if a virus alert is a hoax or not.

First of all, an alert… Continue reading

Run Away Icons

Monday, November 22nd, 2004

Q:
When I try to click my icons, they seem to “run away” from my mouse. I can’t get to them and I’m having a hard time using my computer. What’s wrong?

A:
I get this question a ton, so I finally looked into it. It’s actually a virus, the “magistr” one to be exact.

If you’ve been infected with it for more than two months, it will… Continue reading

Fake PayPal Email

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004

Fake PayPal Email

Do you use PayPal? If so, you need to be extremely careful. We’ve been seeing a lot of fraudulent e-mails that appear to be originating from PayPal, but are in fact from an unscrupulous 3rd party.

Oh, and for those who don’t know, PayPal is an online payment system—a really good one too (I like it :-) . They are not part of this scam, more like a… Continue reading

All the World’s Maps

Friday, November 12th, 2004

All the World’s Maps

Need a map for a report? Need a map of a country for your vacation? This is the place to get your maps. How does it work? Choose a map from the drop down box and then click the Launch Map button and ta-da you have a directory of sites to choose your map from.

Better yet you can even get maps of… Continue reading

Digging for Worms

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Digging for Worms

Like me, you probably get more infected emails than good ones. It seems like I’m getting more worms and viruses sent to me than s spam m (never thought I’d see that happen). In my case I get 400-800 infected emails everyday here at Worldstart H.Q. Fortunately I have anti-virus software that deletes the virus/worms but the emails remain with a little note telling me a virus… Continue reading

Download: Cacheman

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Download of the Week:

If you’re the type of person who’s always looking to get the most performance out of your PC I have a great program for you.

As you may know, RAM is the memory that your CPU works with directly. What happens when you have a program or number of programs running that are using more memory (RAM) than you physically have in your machine? Well, Virtual… Continue reading

W32RBOT-GR

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

W32RBOT-GR

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about any of the viruses tearing up the Internet and there’s been some real interesting out there. In the past month and a half I’ve seen two very unique viruses in particular that I’ve wanted to write about. The “JPEG of Death” and the “Rbot-GR” are not very widespread or overly dangerous, but they are pioneers of a sort. The JPEG of… Continue reading

Web Bugs

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Web Bugs

Have you ever heard the term Web Bug? How about Web Beacon or Clear GIF? Well, don’t feel left out if you haven’t, it’s not everyday terminology. The terms I mentioned are different names for the same thing. For the sake of remaining simple I’ll stick with one name Web Bug. So what are Web Bugs and what to they do? They are small (1 by… Continue reading

Hidden User Account

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Hidden User Account

For my next trick I will make a user account disappear, yet remain a full functioning account. Today’s Security Tip is another way to lock down your system, and it does this by hiding specified user accounts. This feature is only available in XP and 2000, so unfortunately the rest of you are out of luck. This process does involve an easy registry edit, but if you’re… Continue reading

XP SysKey Trick

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

e XP SysKey Trick

If you have Windows XP then I really think you’re going to like this week’s security tip. Are you in a situation where you really don’t want anybody accessing the family PC while you’re not around? Maybe you don’t want anybody to use your computer at all. Maybe you just want a little tighter control over when and by whom your PC gets used. If any… Continue reading

XP Service pack 2 Firewall

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

XP Service pack 2 Firewall: Helpful Hints

Well I’ve been doing a lot with Service Pack 2 (SP2) since it’s release, and this week is no exception. The new XP firewall has some serious improvements over the previous version; the changes are so great that the only similarity is the fact that they can stop incoming traffic. It’s evident that Microsoft has put a lot more effort into their integrated… Continue reading

Privacy Settings in IE6

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Privacy Settings in IE6

This week I’m going to talk about something that a lot of people have heard of but don’t know how to take advantage of. If the thought of leaving little bits of information all over the web isn’t something you want to happen, or you just want get a handle on it, then read on.

Internet Explorer’s Privacy Settings is a configuration tool that is located… Continue reading

Privacy Settings in IE6

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Privacy Settings in IE6

This week I’m going to talk about something that a lot of people have heard of but don’t know how to take advantage of. If the thought of leaving little bits of information all over the web isn’t something you want to happen, or you just want get a handle on it, then read on.

Internet Explorer’s Privacy Settings is a configuration tool that is located… Continue reading

Service Pack 2 Security Center

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Service Pack 2 Security Center

Do you have it yet? Well if you don’t you probably soon will. Of course I’m talking about XP Service Pack 2. What Microsoft says about this update is that it’s basically a security overhaul—fixing known exploits in Windows as well as incorporating the new Security Center (SC). This is a control panel if you will, for your new… Continue reading

Peer to Peer Problems

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Peer to Peer Problems

You probably aren’t the only one who uses your PC. Your spouse, sister, brother, son, daughter, or others might use it too. Or, if you have more than one PC in your house and are sharing an Internet connection then you’ll want to listen to this too. Does anyone who shares your network or PC visit any Peer-to-Peer sites? If you’re not familiar with… Continue reading

Wireless Security

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

 

Wireless Security

The ability to share an Internet connection is great and the ability to do this wirelessly is even better. Wireless networks are easy to install—you don’t have to run cables, and you can roam around a location within the WLAN (wireless local area network), or physical range of wireless connectivity ( here’s a way to get started )… Continue reading

Shopping Online

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Shopping Online

Everyone here answers the phone, and a lot of people we talk to do not like the idea of putting their credit card information online. The perception, I believe, is that the number is sent off unsecured into cyberspace being viewed by anyone computer savvy enough, through the card number’s travel.

Well this is true and not true. As a number one rule never give… Continue reading

Virus Victims

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Virus Victims

A reader named Scott recently received an email with an attachment from someone he didn’t know . He writes, “I didn’t open since it had not been scanned for viruses due to encryption. The attachment also ended in .exe, which is another reason I didn’t open it having been warned by friends and your newsletter that it could contain a virus. I hit ‘Reply’ to ask… Continue reading

Answers That Work

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Answers That Work

I’ve been taking some time over the past couple of months to try and get everyone accustomed to managing their firewalls. This can be confusing to the newcomer, as I have said before, and can easily overwhelm casual users.

One of the hardest things about managing firewalls is, what processes to let online? The first time you get online with a… Continue reading

Are Your Shields Up?

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

Today I’m gonna tell you how to test your Computer’s security against outside threats from the Internet. To do this, we need the assistance of a great web-based utility called Shields Up. This handy little program probes your firewall for security shortcomings (vulnerable ports, shares, and browser Headers) and tells you about them in detailed, but easy to follow analysis.… Continue reading

Back Up Your Data

Tuesday, November 9th, 2004

Just about everybody has important data on their hard drive, from digital pictures to important documents, emails, bookmarked websites the list goes on and on. In my experience people are pretty lax about backing up their PCs, and I think this really is an area that deserves attention. With a good back up set you can bounce back from a fatal hard drive crash and be up and… Continue reading

Setting up a firewall

Tuesday, November 9th, 2004

Allowing Programs to Access the Internet

WorldStart has offered some firewalls over the years, and with the increasing popularity and availability of broadband, it’s become an important component in securing your PC. There are a number of different firewalls out there—hardware, software suites, and stand alone titles—but I’ve noticed a lot of frustration when it comes to controlling internet access. Back on May 19, 2004

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