Posts Tagged ‘#security’

Norton

News, Warnings | Posted by Dennis April 14th, 2012

We’ve been recommending Norton protection (again) for the last few months because it seems that Symantec finally got their act together.  So far, so good; it’s fast, reliable, and thus far we have had ZERO infections with the Internet Security (NIS) 2012 product.   BUT there have been a few worrisome glitches, mostly having to do with their registration process.  Many software companies have a way to make sure that you don’t pirate their stuff, and Symantec is no exception.  Although I’ve seen several glitches with the online tracking system, so far their support has been quick to remedy the issue.  In the news:  Symantec announced that users should STOP USING their PC Anywhere software until a patch is released.  See, back in 2006 a hacker stole the code for several of their  products, and then released them to the public when his/her extortion attempt failed.  I don’t really think anyone needs to worry about the NIS package, but DEFINITELY disable PCAnywhere if you run it.  You can read the full article here.

Cyber Warfare and Politics

News, Warnings | Posted by Dennis March 20th, 2012

Our government has been practically impotent for the last 3.5 years thanks to partisanship and posturing.  Yet another fine example of this is dealing with cyber attacks.  We desperately need our laws to catch up and address the myriad of potentially dangerous situations that exist via internet, and yet they are playing the same ol’ song and dance; no agreement, no laws passed so far.  In fact some of the bills introduced are just downright silly.  McCain is trying to push one through that would basically do nothing but keep businesses out of court while further reducing your privacy on the web.  James Lewis, a senior fellow with the Center for Strategic and International Studies took a look at the bill and was apalled.  Lewis called the Senate Republicans’ bill “national security through faith healing.” and added “It’s a flop, it’s a bust, it’s a joke,”.  The problem I see here, besides silly politics, is that the people we chose to represent us in government know VERY LITTLE about the technology.  We should be referring to the experts, educating the public, and letting them decide.  Ignorance is no excuse, I realize… but if they don’t wake up and DO SOMETHING we may face a major attack on the scale of 9-11.  I hear them talk about cyber-terrorism, but in my mind the major threat right now is organized crime.  They are pumping BIG BUCKS into their operations, and getting VERY sophisticated in the attacks and software they build.  It’s easy to imagine a scnario that could make them Billion$ simply by shutting down the NYC power grid for a day, as Presidaent Obama simulated in a recent closed-door demonstration.  I believe top priority should be securing our cyber-borders and holding the big businesses accountable for sloppy IT.  You can read more here (thanks for a great article Huff Post Tech!).

Too Much Security

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis August 25th, 2011

Internet SecurityIn the US we’ve experienced the pains of beefing up security since the 9/11 attacks in NYC.  More security nearly ALWAYS results in less convenience.  The point, in any setting, is to find the right balance.  The same is true on your PC.  For example, I use Kaspersky Internet Security to help clean up viruses and attacks, because I think the it’s the most aggressive tool on the market.  But I don’t install it on many of my client’s PC’s because it can be a real pain in the butt sometimes.  So I look for a solution that is easy to manage, but good at stopping most, or all, of the attacks.  But I have seen folks that were just TOO PARANOID, so much that they crashed their machines.  See, you can’t have more than one virus program or firewall (software) at the same time.  They compete for resources, and get tangled if there is a threat.  So if you want to install new security, BE SURE TO REMOVE YOUR OLD PRODUCT FIRST!

Banks

Helpful Hints, News | Posted by Dennis July 21st, 2011

Trusteer BannerInternet security has become problem worldwide, and banks have taken notice.  Of all the entities out there, they take brunt of attacks and suffer the majority of losses.  But don’t think they take this lightly – some of the best digital security teams in the world work for the largest banks, and many have started taking proactive steps to help their customers.  Here in Tulsa, my bank is setting up full-scale security analysis for its bigger business clients, and has a great place on the website for smaller customers to get information and help.  A good example is a program called Trusteer Rapport.   It watches connections to secured sites for you, and checks validity against phishing sites.  If you do any online banking, you should have this program.  You can download it here.   Interesting note:  When I tried to take a screen shot of the Trusteer web site, Rapport wouldn’t let me!  Just another security measure  :-) 

Safe Browsing

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis February 6th, 2011

There are lots of add-ons out there to help keep you safe, like AVG’s Security Toolbar, and similar ones by Norton and McAfee.  They keep lists of the Bad Guys (malicious URL’s) and will flag search results for you to prevent a “drive-by” attack (getting infected just by clicking over to the site).  The problem with these tools is that each site that you pull up in search results must be checked against their list, usually from the company’s web site.  This can sometimes cause things to REALLY slow down, especially if the site is having trouble or high traffic.  McAfee’s seems to have more trouble than most.  If searching suddenly slows to a crawl, try disabling your security toolbar. IF YOU GET ANY WEIRD MESSAGES WHILE SURFING, just press CTRL-ALT-DEL, run task manager, and hit End Task on all browser windows.

Updates

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis October 18th, 2010

Update all your Adobe stuff! (flash, reader, etc.).  They’ve had some of the most serious security holes  in their software in the last year or two.

Hackers

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis October 17th, 2010

Did you know that hackers from all over the planet are trying to get in to your equipment almost CONSTANTLY? If you don’t believe me, check your router logs. Fortunately the service providers do a fair job of monitoring, but there are lots of things you can do to keep from getting hacked. 1) Anti-virus 2) Firewalls 3) Updates 4) Strong passwords just to name a few.