Posts filed under ‘protection’

Facebook: The First, Primary, Top Danger

I found this article to be the best condensation of what I’ve been reading for months now.  Bear in mind that I don’t use the supposed social-networking sites, for about the same reason that I don’t have a cell-phone.  I find that the dubious advantages are far outweighed by the implicit disadvantages.  [Just to confuse things, I don’t actually consider any program to be the primary danger, but rather the protocols that the human participants bring to the table.  However, since I’ve been working on expressing the latter for forty years perhaps it’s understandable I’m not trying to discuss philosophy, psychology, sociology and etymology among others within this blog’s venue.]

And I’m going to make my coverage of the subject to be very simple.  The add-ons for Facebook aren’t vetted.  That means no one checks them, at all.  They are “released” in what you have to consider alpha or beta version, in the first place.  In the second place, there is absolutely no guarantee whatsoever, at all, in any form or fashion–that any given add-on isn’t constructed specifically to gain information from you and/or your computer.  [An extremely good definition of money, by the way, is information.]

That means that at any given time some of the add-ons, widgets, third party applications or whatever you would like to call them…are actively dangerous.  Some of them will get information from you that you want to keep private.  You have no way (other than vetting the installation package yourself, like using Trend Micro’s HouseCall) to judge whether a given application is dangerous.  Unfortunately, this means that even an application that has been “time-tested” is far from invulnerable.  The built-in security features of this service are poor.

My attitude is literally that “What can happen will, given enough time.”

How much information are you actually leaving exposed via Facebook?  [Do any banking online?]

–Glenn

March 5, 2009 at 4:06 pm Leave a comment

An Unsurprising Alert: Watch It

There is a rise in spam, fakes, come-ons and general duplicity on the Internet.  It seems to be connected to the latest economic troubles.  Although it is entirely unsurprising, it’s a good time to be especially alert for phishing tactics.  And if it seems to good to be true…

–Glenn

March 2, 2009 at 8:37 am Leave a comment

The Worm Mentioned Earlier

Is just that.  Once the infection arrives, it can be spread with no user intervention;  that is, a trojan that morphs into a worm. [*you should arrive at http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/10/24/trojan_exploits_wormable_microsoft_flaw/ *–my part in combatting some things that have been going on with links posted, although I tend not to have truly enormous amounts of readers.]  If you read the article, you can see researchers are also worried about this one.  Any for that matter, anything that manages to add something even temporarily to the Start folder with an *.exe type format…is a worm.  The article is interesting and short.  Name of file dropped is basesvc.dll, in case you don’t have the time–it would be a fun thing to do to search for it on your computer.  Dll files generally reside in Windows, of course, System and System32.  This doesn’t mean that a dynamic linked library cannot reside outside these folders.

–Glenn

December 10, 2008 at 9:46 pm Leave a comment

Ru-Botted

An excellent protection against being a bot (okay, it’s your computer that becomes one) is Trend Micro’s free Ru-Botted tool.  I’ve forgotten frankly when I first became acquainted with the company, but they are excellent.  The underline under “bot” really is a link.  It’s easy to use, and comes highly recommended from several sources.

–Glenn

(It looks like I recommended it before.  Senile dementia, here I come.)

September 21, 2008 at 5:16 pm Leave a comment