Posts tagged ‘protection’
They’re fine. I was making sure about whether or not I was being phished (I was, but by a security company that technically doesn’t phish, it preys on the fears of the uninformed; I checked their reputation and then checked this site; I do not feel comfortable in naming the company that maintains security on WordPress; I will say I’ll just keep the free protection and do occasional scans; all comments ARE moderated=no easy phishing from here. Any scan I include will have been checked, although checking is also timely. Use UAC and if there is a prompt about installing something you didn’t ask for–deny it access, or run it in a sandbox if you can. If you used to go to porn sites (of any level that are illegitimate–Playboy and Hustler should be fine, for instance; a revenge site for people absolutely would not be in many senses) expect trouble. If you go to hacker sites and don’t use an isolated computer you’re an idiot, but I would say you’re an idiot in any case. You will encounter black hats and you will lose to some extent and it could be your freedom–forever. And don’t ever, ever go to the black site that was “fun” in the early 90s, the one with all the wares. You’ll be botted first.
If this was mostly mysterious to you, good for you. I don’t play those games and I have none of those conacts. And if you try to leave a comment, of course, with a link to something bad (half the time they’re work-at-home tagliners) the public won’t ever see it.
Which is something very new. It’s also astonishingly new that it leads to self-executing routines. As I remarked there (doesn’t mean it will be allowed to show), news of worms dates to ancient times. Like Brunner’s Shockwave Rider. I was even alive then, not all that astonishing considering I am a Vietnam vet.
There’s also no tip at all given that I see as to avoid it. You can avoid this kind of flaw in any kind of document, no matter what kind of executable file it uses. Open and save it in a simple text editor, one that doesn’t allow for executables within it. You’re pretty close to safe if you just open it and then immediately save it in that kind of format without taking any other actions. Particularly don’t do any tracking of changes. If you do that trick–saving in a *.txt-like format–delete the original. Then do something really racy and empty your recycle bin. And in general if there are hyperlinks in something that’s sent to you, at least google the ip address. If you don’t know how to do that, think about not going there or just doing a search for whatever the document (or whatever you call something not in *.doc format) is, on the internet.
To make it simple.
Your default should be not to click on links in the Internet unless you’re dam’ sure you can trust ’em. Then you should just think about it. Carefully.
I bought it for her a couple of years; it’s a Northgate, now defunct. Half a gig of RAM, never have looked at the processor speed. It seemed decently fast when she first got it and slowed over time, although there was of course the crapware. And of course she accepted it. Just as I was once an obsessive downloader. Her picture never appears because she won’t allow it. Then again, I’m not all that fond of my own, so I can understand that easily.
I just installed SP3 on her old computer. Seems like that fix has been out there for a while. Mind you, I just fired it back up yesterday. Because of space constraints, I had to have another keyboard, because non-USB keyboards just aren’t designed to be connected/disconnected while everything’s powered on. Already had a USB “mouse” actually tablet. Bear in mind that now–since I’ve gotten the software for the combination wireless keyboard/optical mouse installed on that computer–all I actually have to do is move one USB plug-in, from a hub to the Northgate computer. Rose’s computer. Whatever. Defining reality nominatively is at best a dangerous thing, because names have so many assumptions inherent in them.
The main function of her old computer is simply a real backup. I have an external hard drive; I now have an external computer where I can store stuff and that pretty well will be sans executables because I actually don’t expect to have to access the Internet from it. That means it hides behind the router firewall (effectively anonymizing the IP among a small pool) and then behind the software firewall, first of all. I want to get a bigger hard drive pretty soon and install it in her own computer. It would in some ways be nice to just go ahead and Linux it; I’m nearly sure that Linux word processors can come up with documents with the necessary embedded codes for formatting.
First of all, I tend to expand this considerably, and even to be serious throughout. At this point, protection isn’t a joke. A recent experiment run by a university team found a botnet with millions of users with infected computers, all of whom were presumably unaware. The first thing after internet access has to be installation of an anti-badware program. I like that better than malware, mainly because “malware” gives the impression it’s always a sophisticated exploit. “password” was the most commonly-used password on computer access until IT finally realized it. (Very few systems will take it. Don’t use it.)
Since access to information through our computers has expanded, the computer has come to play more and more of a role in our lives, yet most of us understand it (let alone the Internet) considerably less than our cars. We’re unsure of the distinction between a worm and a virus. *.cab files are something programmers talk about. We hear of phishing attacks, don’t know what to do, and click on links anyway, whether in our e-mail from people we “know” or on web pages like MSN or Yahoo!
I’ve recently been most impressed with Norton. I’m not impressed with McAfee and haven’t been for a long time. There are free anti-badware suites out there (and the more sophisticated ones do things like file cleanup, defragmentation and a lot more)…with documentation that unfortunately has to be aimed at the more sophisticated user. The more sophisticated user is the rarity. Norton has both the easy setup and the support to back it up. Symantec is the corporation behind Norton. I was recently astonished at support for Norton Save & Restore, which is a backup solution.
I think I spent $19.95 on the product. There was no expiration date (I can’t say whether that’s true of current versions because I haven’t yet checked). The problem involved validation of a valid product (that had previously been validated–on a previous computer). We kept getting errors on input of the code for it. “We” meant I actually installed the software for remote control from Symantec and allowed a technician (who showed actual OS and product understanding) to try.
As it happened, he and I couldn’t make it work. In the meantime, it turned out I’d been hit by a Netsky virus (and I’m going to have a further note on protection momentarily) so I had to reinstall Windows, and such. And they called back! We got it installed with a functioning backup. Interestingly enough, it matched the code we’d been trying all along, but that’s another story.
I agree with current analysts that for web-surfing we’re going to have a web-based OS, practically. What I do know for right now is that at this time and point web-based backup makes actual sense. Consider Norton 360. And as far as price goes, consider what happens when something happens that you don’t understand and there is no backup. Forums can be quite frustrating.
Because you will get hit. You will lose a drive; almost undoubtedly you’ll get hit by a virus or worm or some other sort of badware. The loss of information in a society where information has become the medium of value is the loss of “money” and other value indicators. Think about it. And I’ve actually advertised Symantec twice in this blog. I’ve never done that except with free software.