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Thanks, .... Richard Rossbauer
Most Internet users are
familiar with the names of the different types of
undesirable files that can be downloaded to their computers while
the web - Viruses, worms, trojan horses, cookies, spyware, adware,
How about "Zombies" and "Bot farms"? What the devil are they? Are
they PC threats, too?
Yes, and rather serious ones, at that.
Your computer might be controlled by someone, anywhere in the world,
without you knowing it. If it is, it's a Zombie. Computers
connected to the internet that have a virus or Trojan installed to
allow a hacker or other unauthorized person to access and issue
commands via the internet are called "Zombies".
The hacker who controls a "Zombie" may have hundreds, or even
thousands of compromised PC's under his control. These networks of
infected PC's are called "Bot Farms" or "Botnets".
How can you tell if your computer is a "Zombie" in a "Botnet"?
Mr. Greg Day, a Security Analyst for McAfee has written and posted
an article on the
"IT OBSERVER" website that describes, in easy to understand
language, how you can tell if your personal computer has become
someone else's money stealing "Zombie". Read his article about
Zombies and Botnets Here. (Sorry, No
And if you'd like to get up to
date on those other nuisances "Viruses,
worms, trojan horses, cookies, spyware, adware, etc", Check out
the Firewalls and Virus
Protection website where
I've recently updated that information, along with tools and advice
on controlling them. ... Richard |
Thanks to the heads-up in Alex
Eckelberry's Sunbelt Software* Blog, I just read PC Magazine
Editorialist Michael Miller's open letter to four of the major
security software companies top management people.
It all has to do with
Microsoft Company's possible entry into the security market this
summer with a new security service called OneCare (a pure
article is less about what Microsoft could be offering - it
really points out the good and the not so good issues in the popular
security suites offered by Symantec, McAfee, Trend Micro and Zone
It's hard hitting, but it's fair, and it's a great reminder about
how we should consider our approach to keeping our computers secure
and online forays safe.
April 15, 2006The April issue of The
Security Alert News Reporter
is now available.
Although the frequency
and severity of web wide virus exploits seem to have diminished, the
virus writers and cyber criminals haven't stopped doing their
They have simply
joined forces to create even more sophisticated and devious ways to
steal from the Internet public. (You, your family and friends, and
Many of their latest tricks and targets are discussed in this Issue.
Well worth reviewing, because being forewarned is one of the major
steps in building your defenses against their exploits.
Both the News Reporter and the Regular Features Supplement are
loaded with valuable information, reports, and free tools to guide
those of us non-technical internet users who just want to be safe
doing basic stuff.
You can check out the current issue
here. If you like what you see, please consider subscribing for
our periodic releases, and be a part of my "Computer Virus Awareness
Campaign" by sharing with a friend.
April 14, 2006
Which do you use when you
update your Windows
A recent post in the Sunbelt Software Blog
by Alex Eckelberry suggested that using
Microsoft Update instead of Windows Update gives you everything
that Windows Update does, and more it checks for things like
Office updates, too.
I never really paid too much attention to
which one I used, so I followed his suggestion, and Yes, it seems to
be much better than just the Windows Update service, thank you,
April 12, 2006 Are you still
practicing your New Year's Security Resolutions?
Lest we forget, the
cyber world hasn't become any safer since the beginning of this year
- however, the cyber criminals have become even more clever.
Most all of the security
software providers seem to agree that the numbers of serious virus
threats have diminished over recent months.
They also agree that the amount of malware has definitely increased,
both in numbers of attacks and sophistication. A recent study showed
that online fraudsters launched a record number of phishing scams
last year, with nearly 17,000 unique e-mail-based fraud attacks
detected in November alone, and close to 18,000 in January, 2006.
I doubt that this continuing increase will stop very soon. Since
much of the increase can be
related to people falling for the scam messages in their Spam email,
a review of ways to minimize the amount of Spam entering our email
inboxes might be timely.
P.S. If you find value in my
security and safety postings, please join in my Security Awareness
Campaign by letting your friends know about this blog. They can
easily add it to their RSS Feed readers or bookmark it to their
P.P.S. Please note the most recent addition to my list of Favorite
Blogs "Creative Consulting"
April 6, 2006
Get your U.S. Treasury Department Free
Identity Theft DVD, too.
The DVD I ordered last month just
arrived. It is well worth the few weeks wait!
The importance of protecting yourself
and your family against fraudsters and criminals intent on stealing
your money and good name is being stressed heavily by all of the
And in my opinion, well they should. Based on all of the statistics
being reported by our Government agencies and private organizations,
the losses to ordinary public citizens are only getting worse.
The Identity Theft thieves are becoming more and more sophisticated,
and organized, in their attack methods, both online and in our
everyday lives. You'll find out just how organized from the DVD.
The Treasury Department free DVD, titled "IDENTITY THEFT -
Outsmarting the Crooks" is an excellent expose of many of the
tricks, scams, and lures these criminals are using.
It's also a great resource and guide for getting help to avoid the
theft of your privacy and what to do if you become a victim.
Every family should have a copy and share the message with their
family members, and it would be a very valuable addition for Senior
Centers (major targets of the ID crooks), civic organizations,
schools, employee groups, etc.
The ordering information is in my March
10th post HERE. For only $2. to cover mailing, it's easily
affordable for just about everyone.
U.S. Treasury Department Releases Free
Identity Theft DVD
I just ordered the Identity Theft:
Outsmarting the Crooks, DVD through the Federal Citizen Information
Center in Pueblo, CO. This is an excellent source for a wealth of
free and inexpensive publications covering hundreds of consumer
It'll take 2 or 3 weeks until it and a few other
publications arrive in my mailbox, and it all cost only $2.00.
The Treasury Department has very recently released this DVD and I
believe supplies are limited. The content caught my interest, of
course. It informs consumers about identity theft, how to protect
themselves against the crime and what to do if they fall victim. It
also features a resource library of downloadable materials,
including sample forms and letters that victims can use in reporting
the crime and collecting evidence.
Free Copies of the Treasury Department DVD are available through the
Federal Citizen Information Center at www.pueblo.gsa.gov , toll-free
at 1-888-878-3256, or by writing to: FCIC -05B, PO Box 100, Pueblo,
I appears to me to be a good investment for just about everyone.
Order item number 635N ... Richard |
April 5, 2006
Stinger updated as of April
5, 2006 to include
protection against the
protection to your new computer update your backup protection for
your existing machines
the Free virus checking and removal
tool (compliments of McAfee's Anti-virus and Vulnerability Emergency
Response Team -
updated April 5, 2006.
It's a great
little program that fits neatly on a floppy disc - a perfect way to
clean up your computer if a worm or other 'rogueware' has disabled
your ability to get back on the Internet to update your
Whenever updated versions becomes available, I'll post
a notice here, on the Firewalls and Virus Protection website and
in the Security Alert News Reporter. Download the current version
here at McAfee
April, 2006(UPDATED) Use RSS
add current Web Feeds to
automatically update your daily reading lists
More and more of my favorite websites, newsletters and blogs
Now, even more display the
button. Clicking on it automatically adds that feed to my personal
Using RSS feeds has saved a lot of time!, I don't have to go on a search for the latest
information published on my favorite sites -- every new bit of information, post, or
announcement appears in my RSS Reader. (The new IE7 browser is expected to
refer to these as "Web Feeds.")
Soon you'll find that many of your favorite sites display the little
buttons. There will be more and more in the days ahead. If you don't
have a Free 'MyYahoo' page, it's very easy to get one from the Yahoo site.
The same is true for
After you put the first Web Feed into you RSS Feed Reader and have
up-to-date notices delivered to you without having to worry about
opening an email notice, you'll appreciate how great this RSS stuff
really is. Try It. You'll enjoy it!.
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