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Archive for the ‘Security Help’ Category



Checking up on kids’ web use and clearing your web history

Want to know what sites the kids (or your spouse) have been visiting on the internet? Besides the #1 rule of internet parenting (No child should use the web without at least periodic living human supervision), you can check the sites in History. In Internet Explorer, the icon looks like a clock with an arrow going counter-clockwise.

The… Continue reading

Run antivirus on flash memory

Wednesday, October 12th, 2005

Do you use a flash memory stick, sometimes called a ‘thumb drive”, to carry information between different computers? You can (and probably should) run your antiviral software on that drive. When you open your antivirus program of choice, select that drive as the location to scan. As always, make sure those virus definitions have been recently updated!

~ Chris Fisher… Continue reading

Are you seeing Red X’s where images should be in your email messages? Outlook express users, help is here! Yahoo email users, this tip is for you. The missing pictures are blocked by Outlook Express as a security feature to prevent you from downloading pictures and other content (like viruses) from the email server. Like all sp am filters, sometimes it also blocks information you want to receive… Continue reading

7 security tips for back to school

Monday, September 26th, 2005

Seven Security Tips for Back to School

This week I ran across an article at Microsoft Security site that I thought would be useful for anybody, especially anyone who travels and is using possibly more than one computer over the course of day. The article was basically a checklist of good practices to keep users and their systems safe. Let’s take a gander at what Microsoft recommends.

1. The first… Continue reading

Two Bad Brothers

Friday, September 16th, 2005

Sept. 9, 2005- I noticed something as I was surfing through my favorite security sites, looking for any new threats on the horizon: a pattern of total domination by two worms over all other cyber menaces. During the past few months, Netsky and MyTob have taken control of many computer systems, surpassing only each other in the number of systems infected, with no relief for end-users in the future.

The… Continue reading

Skip the User Login Step

Friday, September 16th, 2005

Q:
I am the only user name on my computer. How can I skip the user login step?

A:
For security reasons, it can be a good idea to leave this be. However, if saving time is important to you, try the following:

In Windows XP Go to “Start” and choose “Run”.

In Windows Vista click “Start” and type in the Search Bar

W32/Zotob

Thursday, September 15th, 2005

On 16 August 2005 security company Sophos discovered a new worm that was taking advantage of the Microsoft exploit MS05-039. You may have heard of this Worm in the news. It’s responsible for infecting computers at several high profile companies such as The New York Times, CNN and ABC. Microsoft thought the threat so severe that it rolled out an update for its Malicious Software Removal Tool before the normal… Continue reading

Adware included- beware!

Thursday, September 15th, 2005

This one gave me a real laugh: did you know that if a program admits to including adware in their licensing agreement and you accept that license, you are violating the agreement if you remove the adware! There may even be a legal obligation if the program is used without the adware. If I find adware on my system, I’m removing it—and any program that put it there. Go ahead… Continue reading

W32IRCBot.Worm

Thursday, September 15th, 2005

There’s a nasty virus out there, the W32IRCBot.Worm. It’s an Internet Relay Chat-based virus that takes advantage of unpatched Windows systems via the MS05-039 vulnerability.

The Worm received a High security risk assessment from McAfee when it was initially discovered on the 17 August 2005 due to prevalence. The next day the virus was downgraded to a Medium security risk due a decline in the rapid infections, but still warns… Continue reading

Phishing for Faxes

Wednesday, September 7th, 2005

August 17, 2005

Phishing has been around for a while now, I would say everyone has a pretty good grip on how this scam works. If not, you should think about reading our phishing scam article from earlier in the year.

One thing that has been a constant in the phishing game is that the attacks usually attempt to lure you in with a fake email that attempts to pose… Continue reading

Web Accelerator Vs. Updates

Friday, September 2nd, 2005

If you have a web accelerator on your computer you may need to turn it off before downloading updates for Norton Antivirus and other programs.

Set your programs for manual updating and find out how to temporarily disable the accelerator.

This advice comes from a reader named Syd “who learns everything the hard way”.

~ David

David Samuel Thomas… Continue reading

Top 10 Security Flaws – 2nd Quarter 2005

Friday, September 2nd, 2005

10 August 2005

I ran across SANS Institute’s TOP TWENTY SECURITY FLAW list for the second quarter of 2005 and thought that it brought to light some good information. SANS releases these lists so that organizations and users can check the status of their systems to ensure all security holes or flaws are patched. The top twenty is really two smaller lists of ten. The two lists that I speak… Continue reading

3 August 2005

I can’t speak for others but I personally could go the rest of my life without hearing how much more “secure” Apple’s OS X operating system is compared to Window’s XP. It doesn’t help when it seems like you’re constantly hearing of all the horrible malware attacks on XP machines.

To me it’s always been a numbers game more than about the operating systems themselves. I believe… Continue reading

Control Internet Access

Thursday, August 25th, 2005

Q:
I don’t want my kids using the internet while I’m gone. Is there a way to stop them?

A:
In my opinion, if you can’t be there to monitor activity, then prevent activity. Call me a mean dad if you want, but online mischief is very tempting when there’s no supervision.

First off, you should create a seperate, limited user account for your children. In XP you… Continue reading

Rootkits

Thursday, August 25th, 2005

27 July 2005

Rootkits have been around for over 10 years, and known by other names before that. They are suites of small programs that exploit your system in a way that can be next to impossible to detect and even harder to remove if one finds its way on to your system. The name comes from what it does—it gives the attack administrator access to the

Don’t Block Yourself

Saturday, August 20th, 2005

Do you occasionally send email to yourself? Has it started going to your Deleted items folder? You may have accidentally added your own address to your spam filter’s enemy list or reported yourself as spam.

“Huh? I’m not that dumb!” you reply.

Neither am I, but the other day I was going through my Inbox and deleting spam when I noticed that it forged my email address as the sender… Continue reading

How Spyware Effects Internet Usage

Saturday, August 6th, 2005

13 July 2005

Once bitten, twice shy. Well, at least that’s what a study conducted by Pew Internet & American Life Project is suggesting.

Their study concludes that the threat of unwanted software programs is changing the way people use the internet. It ended on July 6th, 2005 so the info is quite fresh. In this study are some hard numbers supporting the theory that the majority of adult internet… Continue reading

Stop the “Spim”

Saturday, August 6th, 2005

What is SPIM? If you use an instant messaging service like AIM, MSN Messenger, or Yahoo Messenger then you probably know. It is unwanted commercial messages that pop up, enticing you to click a link for some product or service.

Another IM annoyance is a message from someone you don’t know (or don’t know well). Anyone with your AOL or Yahoo address can use it to send you an IM… Continue reading

Counterfeit BBB Scam

Saturday, July 16th, 2005

6 July 2005

Looking for a jet-ski or maybe searching for a new car online? Visited any online auctions or personals looking for a big-ticket item lately? If this sounds like you then you want to listen up.

There’s a new scam out there preying on those looking for more expensive items online. The scam that I am speaking of uses the Better Business Bureau logo and name to give… Continue reading

We all know that simple passwords are dangerous. If you’re using any of the following for passwords (or forms thereof), you probably aren’t as secure as you think:

  • Names Of Pets
  • Birth date
  • Last 4 digits of your SS#
  • Kid’s Names
  • Grandkid’s Names
  • Parent’s Names
  • Addresses
  • Phone Numbers

Did I catch you? Well, it gets even worse!

Even if you’re not using any of the above, but are… Continue reading

Email Security Scan

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

Well troops, surprise inspection! Let’s see how secure your defenses are against mail-born threats. Think you’re up to the test? Then read on.

The problem with all the security holes that arise from day to day, is that it’s hard to keep up. “Am I protected?” you wonder, “I update constantly, I scrutinize all my

Google Security

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

15 June 2005

Google is always adding new products and features. One of these is the Personalized Google Homepage.You can customize it with news, movies, weather, stock market reports and more. How convenient. But there is a dark side.

Google saves your search history. Every person, place, thing, or word you look up is stored in your history (BTW-same goes for the Google Toolbar). This can be cleared or paused… Continue reading

Three-pronged Attack

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

8 June 2005

We’ve seen some serious virus activity lately, sheesh, but in the opinion of many, myself included, the worst threat has got to be the combined attack of the “Mitglieder” and other Bagel variants. This coordinated joint attack on Internet users is something new to a lot of Security experts and the potential numbers of those infected is something to behold. Watching the blended attack play out is… Continue reading

Close all Browser Windows and Tabs

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

A vulnerability in Firefox led to personal information being stolen.

The best way to avoid the flaw is to close out all tabs and windows before doing any online shopping, banking, or entering personal info.

Not that Internet Explorer has this flaw, but it’s a good practice in any browser just to be safe.

~ David

David Samuel Thomas… Continue reading

Phishing Buddies

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005

1 June 2005

Phishing scams have been casting their nets in two of the biggest Instant Messaging (IM) programs since the end of May. Though the scams are different, the underlying message is clear. The message I’m referring to is that phishing attacks have a new, less secure avenue in which to deceive end-users into coughing up personal information.

This is significant due to the fact that many… Continue reading

Personalized Phishing

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005

25 May 2005

If you want to catch bigger fish use better bait. Most of you by now have heard of or witnessed phishing scams. I have personally written two articles in the past couple of months describing what phishing scams are and how to avoid or spot them.

Just to get everyone up to speed on this subject I’ll go over the basics of phishing. Phishing is… Continue reading

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