Current Blog Posts
Subscribe to our Security Alert RSS feed. It keeps you totally
informed of the latest web page updates, Newsletter Editions and Blog
posts as soon as they're made!
What's an RSS Feed?
We Blog A Lot
Get your FREE report
"23 Critical Security
from the subscription
Latest Virus Threats
No.1 Use of the Internet?
Please take this one minute mini-survey.
Let us know how we can best serve your
primary interests so you can avoid Hacker and spy ware intruders.
We'll give you a nifty and entertaining Free
eBook on Coping With Your Stresses
as a Thank for your
to date on Internet Security with
the Firewalls and Virus Protection
Security Alert Blog
Valuable Information for the everyday Internet User and Web
(web log) is a quick and easy way to share timely information
(alerts, updated news, trends, and developments), answer questions, express
opinions and exchange views. The really valuable and outstanding features of blogging are that it
is interactive -- news, views and opinions are exchanged in a
Visitors to this Security Alert Blog are encouraged to express their views and
opinions on our postings (easily done by clicking on the highlighted
'COMMENT' at each post). You'll notice
that our most recent Posts appear first. You can use the links in
the left column to jump to posts from earlier weeks and months.
Please let us hear from you. We'll look at
your comments and remove anything inappropriate (hateful, abusive,
explicit, etc.), before posting your replies.
Please stick to the theme of "Security Awareness and Safety on the
Internet'. Your email address will never be displayed and will not
be shared with third parties.
We are very pleased that you're here today,
forward to your early return. Using our
feed or bookmarking this page will make it a lot easier to visit
with us again.
.... Richard Rossbauer
June 1, 2005 Are
you sure you selected the best anti-spyware
Everywhere you turn anymore - TV,radio, Newspapers and magazines
-there's an advertisement for anti-spyware software - - all claiming
to be the best of the best.
Too many choices - which anti-spyware
solution should you use and how can a person know which one will
really keep them safest?
I suggest that it'll take more than just one program to provide the
best protection. Two, and possibly even three are necessary.
Making the choices among the increasing number of available programs
can be somewhat overwhelming.
Here's a way to make it a bit easier. Just do a quick
(read full article)
May 31, 2005
Add this excellent information blog to your list of
Must Read spyware avoidance resources
In my opinion, the more useful
information you have about the scourge of malicious spyware, the
better chance you'll have of
avoiding the grief it will bring.
I just found Wayne
Cunningham's Spyware-Confidential blog. On the chance that it could
take you as long to find it as it took for me, here's a link
directly to it.
Information so well written and presented fits perfectly into my
campaign to educate the lesser informed and everyday Internet users
about the 'problem' of surreptitious attacks on our personal
security and privacy.
I encourage you to visit it:
If you're collecting RSS feeds, use this one for
May 30, 2005
Do you ever have the feeling that you're caught in the
middle of Guerilla type warfare?
Armies of compromised (Zombie)
computers under the control of less than desirable elements have
been covertly organized by Spammers for criminal
Virus authors are using Bot Nets to launch spam
emails, Denial of Service (DDoS) assaults, penetrate our personal
privacy, steal our money and identities, and worse. These Bot Nets
often consist of a few thousand or so hijacked computers. The
individuals or organized groups who operate the Bot Nets hide their
identities and locations because the spam messages they send are
camouflaged by the legitimate addresses of the 'Zombied" computers.
The attackers can use Hit and Run tactics. Often, barrages of emails
from the smaller Bot Net groups slip under the gunsights of the
watch dogs who try to search out and destroy these enemies. The next
barrage could come from a different group controlled by the same
I have read estimates that upwards of 80 percent of personal
computers have some sort of malicious spyware, or have been
This is alarming, because no matter how much effort I put into
keeping my computer free of scumware, friends and relatives can
easily and unknowingly send infected messages to me. The same thing
could happen to you.
We've got to help our friends and
relatives understand what's happening and how to avoid being a part
of the Zombie Networks.
The June 2005 issue (No 13) of
the Security Alert News Reporter
will address these topics in more detail, provide suggestions and
guidelines for keeping out of the line of fire, and even repairing
Existing subscribers will receive their Newsletters early next week.
If you aren't already a subscriber, you can get your copy by
May 23, 2005
Browser Hijacking and How to Stop It
If you never experienced a
Browser Hijacking, that's no guarantee you never will.
Here's an outstanding source
of information and advice on Browser Hijacking.
I consider it good insurance and believe it should be in every web
It's the "Beginners Guide - Browser Hijacking and How
to Stop It"
by Mike Dowler of PCStats.com
Visit the site, read the article to become familiar with Browser
Bookmark it for eventual future use.
But don't ignore the advice. Follow the guide now and you may never
have to experience the frustrations of losing your browser to
This is probably one of the easiest to understand beginners' guides
on the Internet -- and it's Free!
It's another example of PWC (People Who Care) devoting their skills,
time and effort to make the Internet a safer place for the everyday
I wish I had this type of help available the first two times my
browser was hijacked last year. YES - it can happen more than once.
I've been following the trials and tribulations of one of my
favorite Internet 'Gurus' - Harvey Segal- as he struggles with
removal of a tenacious Hijacking program.
He has given me permission to share some of the details of his
to remove it. When his computer is completely clean, I'll post his story in hopes
that it will help all of us avoid similar frustrations.
Back before this kind of
stuff became so prevalent, we posted an article based on
one of Harvey's Super
Tips telling how his backup browser saved him then.
We'll soon learn what he had to do to remove this newest of Browser
Hijackers this time.
May 22, 2005
Where to go after Netscape 8?
Should unwavering and loyal
Netscapers who have stayed with that browser thru the many releases
up thru 7.2, change to Netscape 8, or would they be better served to
use Mozilla Firefox?
I was preparing to download
Netscape 8 yesterday (the day after its release) until I read the
May 20th news report by Joris Evers that Netscape already had to
release an update to fix several serious security flaws, on the day
Turns out that Netscape 8 is based on version 1.0.3 of the Firefox
browser. That version was just updated to 1.0.4 by the Mozilla team
to fix (read rest of
May 20, 2005
Sober.p attacked McAfee AVERT Stinger antivirus
program. Time to get the May 2, 2005 update!
If you have followed my
recommendations in the
website about a free emergency virus protection program, you have
already downloaded STINGER.
The filename has been changed from "stinger.exe"
"s-t-i-n-g-e-r.exe" to circumvent anti-stinger tactics used by the
Sober.p. virus. (This is the new logo).
Stinger is a stand-alone utility used to detect and remove specific
viruses. It's not a substitute for full anti-virus protection, but
rather a tool to assist users when dealing with an infected system -
like when a virus has disabled your internet connection and you
can't get online to update your anti-virus program.
It fits easily on a single floppy Disk. You can use it as we do, to check any of your
PC computers for viruses, without being on line.
It's an 'After the Fact' application, which means that it does not scan
incoming email files, attachments or downloads, but it does scan whatever you
have already received online. (Check our website for FREE full time
virus protection programs).
Stinger currently checks and repairs about 48 of the most recent viruses.
Update your copy, or get a new FREE download from
Why take a chance?
May 18, 2005
Hard Drive Crash -- if it can happen, it probably
and it just did for me.
Being offline for 5 days due
to hardware difficulty can be very painful, especially when it
delays the publication and updates of a newsletter, website and blog.
Even more serious is the potential loss of a major collection of
software, files and important data. Fortunately, the files on my
crashed harddrive were retrievable and have been copied to a
Actually, many of my really important files were backed up on CDs
and ZIP disks. But a working harddrive is necessary to retrieve and
My next, and most immediate project will be to add an external
harddrive on which I can more easily back up all of my work on a
daily basis. Backing up to CD' and ZIPs takes a lot more effort and
discipline, and is subject to the perils of procrastination.
I'm sharing this experience as a reminder that (*) Murphy's laws do
prevail and as a suggestion to re-visit your own
May 8, 2005
How much changes in a year for the ordinary,
everyday Cyber World adventurer?
While preparing the 1 Year Anniversary issue of the "Security Alert
News Reporter', I reviewed the 11 previous issues to determine how
much, if any, the threats to Cyber Security had changed.
I believe the online security situation really hasn't changed -
we are still faced with virus infections, SPAM, malware, increasing
spyware intrusions, potential identity theft, and all of the other
nasty stuff that plagued us last year.
What has seemed to change is the shift of actual felonious criminal
activities from our daily offline world to the Internet
Criminal schemes like criminal spam,
phishing, spoofed or hijacked accounts, international re-shipping
schemes, Cyber-extortion, auction fraud, credit card fraud,
Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), Computer Intrusions (hacking),
economic espionage (Theft of Trade Secrets), International Money
Laundering, Identity Theft, and a growing list of traditional crimes
that continue to move on-line.
Makes you wonder if anything good has changed. I would answer 'Yes',
but that simply raises the question of "How Much and is it Good
The cyber crooks have grown smarter and more sophisticated. They're
running the Offense, while the Good Guy protective software writers
appear to be always in a Defense mode.
Defense is not cheap - it costs all of us honest Internet users and
the protective software writers a lot of money, lost time, and
What's the Answer? Is there an Answer? I believe there are things we
Internet users can do to mitigate some of our own problems.
One part of this solution is Education. We can help everyone
understand that the Cyber Threats are real, that users can't relax
their defenses, even for a minute, and that our personal computer
protective measures must always be up to date.
I believe by encouraging all of our family and friends to strengthen
their defenses, the thrust of the online criminals can be blunted
and our Good Guys might eventually win the game - or at least tie
Are we, as individuals, ready to help?
Comment from visitor Patrick
-- where will this evolution lead?