27 October 2005

Reality Bytes: Protect your Computer from the Internet

Here are a few details of a report that The Gadget Show did that might interest some of you out there...
Viruses can come from emails, software downloaded from the Internet, or even just leaving the Internet on.
Users should be careful of software like e.g. Kazaa because some shared files may just be viruses.
The Gadget show also did an example of how dangerous the Interent is:
  • They set up a new computer - no protection installed or actiavted, Windows XP Pro with basic SP2 installed
  • During the first 45 minutes there wasn't a lot of crticical spyware or viruses installed.
  • A few minutes after, a zero-day exploit (worm that takes advantage of a security vulnerability as it becomes better known e.g. in media) infected the computer with the worm 'Sasser' (with the override program lsass.exe - the original is a Windows logon program) - it was then detected by the file management and task/process status logger and started to majorly affect the computer.
  • All the viruses together opened 500 internet connections in the network, and over 36,000 files were created and changed on the computer's hard drive, in just that time.
  • The energy resources were dramatically reduced to a point on the computer where the Operating System completely failed to load and 'died' - it was infected with so much malware that it was not possible to start or use the computer anymore without professional support.
    And... BBC's Click Online programme (I seem to talk about that so much I must be an advertiser) also did a similar test - and it took the computer only 8 seconds to become infected with the Sasser exploit! View the report.
    So that's how dangerous the Internet is. Shocking. And it's only getting worse with new viruses released every day. So here are a few links you can visit to help protect your computer from those Internet hazards:
    1) Get a firewall installed before connecting to the Internet - they recommend Zone Alarm.
    2) Install all the Windows Updates and optionally the Microsoft Updates.
    3) Install a Anti-Virus software protection. They recommend a FREE program - avast! antivirus.
    If you want to find out about other protection or security software, I have some suggestions on my Programs and Software page on my website. Click the links for 'System Maintenance' and 'Security & Settings'.
    I also have a link to Symantec Security Check, that will analyse your computer for possible vulnerablities and then give details on how to solve them. This includes threats from viruses (you can choose to do a full scan of your computer), outdated virus definitions and protection software products, hacker exposure, Windows vulnerability and trojan horse check. Just simply install the ActiveX when prompted. The Security Scan option will take about 2-3 minutes to complete and then give you details of all the ports and whether they are open, closed, or in stealth. Don't worry about port 80, because that one allows access to the Internet!
    And... on the subject of security, The Gadget Show also did a report about accounting passwords. You can visit this page to safely test how strong your password is and then read the tips below your result to learn how to make it stronger. You have to actually click the Submit button to confirm your password entry. Microsoft have also set one up here.
    Plus... a link to an alternative of passwords - Passfaces. It sounds weird, but it is actually more secure and safe to remember a face of someone in a whole crowd of possibilities rather than a set of letters and numbers.
    Read the report that Click ("Online") did about spyware here.
    You can also watch an example of how spyware infects your computer here.

  • Picture of Anonymous
    moi_me_hehe wrote:
    Cool site :) The law and order thing for the ages of 16, 17 and 18 i found interesting lol! (sad i know)
    Oct. 29 | Delete

    Picture of Anonymous
    Zoƫ xoxox wrote:
    You are amazing. EVery blog I've ever seen (including my own) is about random crap that nobody cares aboot. But ures is amazing. Well done x
    Oct. 27 | Delete