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It's a horrible time for internet security


The_One
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You know, there was a time - not so long ago - when I could happily use my computer, surf the internet etc without a firewall, pop-up blocker, virus protection or ever having to update my software.

 

I remember a couple of months ago, my brother popped on the net after having accidentally disabled ZoneAlarm. Within about 20 seconds we'd picked up the Blaster Worm. Now, I daren't touch the internet without my firewall up and running. (As a side note, I reinstalled ZA today and have already had 190 attempted intrusions - 51 of those being high rated!)

 

Today, after so long delaying, I had a massive blitz at my computer. I actually went to the Windows update site and downloaded everything to get me up-to-date. Believe it or not, I've never bothered upgrading to Win XP SP1 before, nor have I bothered to download security updates unless I've been directly affected. After I'd done that, I got myself a copy of Norton Antivirus - I've never bothered with AV protection either - I'm a great fan of letting ZoneAlarm do its job, and hitting the "off" switch if anything should ever get through.

 

Why did I suddenly do this? Well, I picked up a browser hi-jacker the other day, and also it seems as if the LucasForums adverts are firing trojans at unsuspecting forum users. I just feel as if I'm having to box myself into a nuclear shelter, reinforce the walls and get all the medication I need to survive a nuclear holocaust.

 

It really is a horrible time for internet security :(

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Originally posted by The_One

Why did I suddenly do this? Well, I picked up a browser hi-jacker the other day, and also it seems as if the LucasForums adverts are firing trojans at unsuspecting forum users.

 

It really is a horrible time for internet security :( [/b]

 

 

LF peeps are doing this? this is a horrible time as well :-(

 

wonders if i should start another era of mccarthyism

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Pretty sad that you need at least 2 or three programs as a prerequisite FOR using your PC online.

 

A firewall to stop those gits from attacking your PC, AV to stop your PC from picking up any viruses that will break it, AND if you are using IE, a popup stopper...

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I agree it's becoming ridiculous. It's like having a grand party, and every two minutes a party crasher is trying to get in and spoil the fun, the local hoodlums are throwing bricks through your windows, and everyone's trying to dance wearing suits of armour.

 

There will always be killjoys - and the net seems to be a breeding ground for them.

 

*dons a flak jacket and breaks out the heavy weapons*

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'Tis a sad, sad truth indeed. :(

 

Either that or you've been lookin' at some *coughnaughtywebsitescough* The_One. :p;)

 

That reminds me though... I really need to get a firewall installed... I haven't have one since I last reformatted my computer.... several... months ago. I guess I'm extremely lucky not to have any viruses right now. =|

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Originally posted by StormHammer

I agree it's becoming ridiculous.

 

Almost as ridiculous as your long-winded analogy there ;)

 

As a side note, I've noticed that AV software can slow things down a bit. For starters, my PC takes longer to load at the desktop, and IE doesn't pop up the second I click it. Ah well, it's a small price to pay for the benefit of protection - wait that's what he said :p

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It is really a shame that some evil hackers (not all are evil) do this to unsuspecting people. It's like they're trying to create some sort of neverending plague of viruses.

 

Luckily, some of those viruses all have flaws, and just like that, they become deleted, courtesy of a computer with a firewall and up to date anti-virus programs.

 

Of course, if a trojan were sent my way, then it'd be time to get out "the boys." ;)

 

*Grabs a bullet-proof vest and flak jacket, along with a couple swords, smoke bombs, stun grenades, and all sorts of guns, for those "just-in-case" emergencies.*

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Well, I've always said - and will certainly continue to say - that your best form of virus protection is the "off" button. If you think you've got a virus, hit that switch, and then physically unplug yourself from the internet. Then boot back up, and try and find whatever it was.

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Even if you have firewalls and such, you're STILL at risk. BlackICE and the Witty worm, anyone?

 

I love my hardware firewall to death. I don't have to worry about extra programs being run which cut down on my memory, and it was the only thing that saved my father's ass from Blaster this summer.

 

On the other hand, I'm probably losing a ton of hair from stupid people on campus and their inability to be cautious on the internet. The click on fifty thousand things and wonder how some of the most dangerous viruses and spyware in existance are on their system.

 

EDIT: Additionally, I'd boot into safe mode if you have a virus/spyware, that way it doesn't load on bootup and you don't have to worry about disabling it before removing it.

 

Double EDIT: Sorry I had to do this guys, but I think I just ran into what you're describing One. Surprisingly, it's ON THE DF FORUMS.

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You're right the one. I also have my ZA and AV-Guard continuesly running and I also remember times when there were no aggressive popups and worms and other viruses.....

 

Now I decided to buy another Harddisk. Sure for having more space but also to run windows 98 on it because I heard it shoud be more safe from virusattacks through the I-net.

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Originally posted by The Silent One

I'm starting to think about migrating to linux afterall with Mozilla browser. Seems a bit safer and I've heard there really aren't viruses for linux, so I might be venturing to that soon. :D

 

Or ya could just download Smoothwall , put it on the crummiest computer you have(ideally a 100mhz one) and whalla, a super-great firewall and still have Windows!

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Most viruses target Windows rather than Linux, and once in a blue moon Macs due to the fact that there are a ton of pissed off coders out there that are angry as hell at Microsoft. So how do you show you're fustration with Microsoft's inability to code efficiently? Nail them where it hurts: security exploits, open ports, etc.

 

Seriously, when was the last time you heard a hacker was pissed off at the Mac userbase?

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I have to admit, I am very pleased with Norton Internet Security, I love coming to many pages including this one, and there not being an advert in sight..... The only other thing I run is an old version of popup killer, its very simple and stable......

 

occasionally I run ad aware and the like but have no real problems with the laptop I most commonly use. The older p800 was in all sorts of bad shape, so I reinstalled xp and started from scratch, plus added NIS, runs like a charm now(Thanks for your help Siv!)

 

mtfbwya

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Don't even get me started. I'm afraid of searching for a spyware blocker in case I might pick up a virus on the way.

 

And yes, there is a trojan horse at geebee when an ad pops up, I think its the "weather bug" ad, mcafee noticed it.

 

Its getting very ridiculous, as I currently have the Pate.b virus which infects all EXE. files and damages some beyond use. I currently can't use windows media player and all the EXE icons are broken, showing the default window icon. And awile back I got some virus that to this day will lock down explorer when I enter my documents.

 

The internet can be really cool or really frustrating :indif:

 

 

G

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Originally posted by The_One

Well, I've always said - and will certainly continue to say - that your best form of virus protection is the "off" button. If you think you've got a virus, hit that switch, and then physically unplug yourself from the internet. Then boot back up, and try and find whatever it was.

Yeah, but it's a lot quicker and easier to block a virus from infecting your machine in the first place than it is to remove it once it's there. You take a small hit in system resources and speed, but I won't have to spend hours or days manually disinfecting my PC. You also won't have to apologize to friends and family when everyone in your email contact list starts getting infected messages from you.

 

I recently had to help a co-worker disinfect his brother's machine. He had no firewall, no AV software, and no anti-spyware stuff installed. He, his wife, and thier daughter (under 10) all used this machine to surf the web. Thier IE security settings were set to "low." :rolleyes:

It took us almost a week to get the thing clean. My only consolation is that they were on dial-up, not broadband. They had several different strains of the Bagle virus that wouldn't allow you to install any virus-removing software and that kept re-installing itself when you re-booted. They had several hundred spyware entries the first time I ran Spybot and AdAware, including keyloggers.

 

Personally, I am behind both a hardware and software (Zone Alarm) firewalls. I check for Norton updates daily, and scan at least once a week. I run WebWasher, Spybot, AdAware, Spyware Blaster, and Win Patrol to keep spyware at bay. I check for updates on each of these daily, and scan several times a week. I usually clear my cookies and temp. internet folder once a day.

 

Sounds like a lot of effort and work... but trust me: it's a lot less time to do that every day and know I'm sitting down to a computer that works everytime than it is to have to go in and do battle on that scale to clean up after the fact. Let the software do all the hard work for you.

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I think a bit of common sense goes a long way in protecting your PC. For example, don't open any e-mails unless you are 100% sure what they are - and never open attachments unless you are sure either. Don't click links that go to dodgy sites, and don't download from Kazaa (or similar) unless it is clear you are getting the right file.

 

I've never been infected by a serious virus (aside from the Blaster Worm, which I removed in about 2 minutes) in all my internet history - and I'm sure this is mainly because I'm careful, and don't just click on anything!

 

By the way, I've upgraded to ZoneAlarm Pro, and it has a feature to completely remove not just pop-ups, but banner ads also! I'm surfing the net (and LucasForums) completely advert free - it really is wonderful :D

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Originally posted by Tyrion

Or ya could just download Smoothwall , put it on the crummiest computer you have(ideally a 100mhz one) and whalla, a super-great firewall and still have Windows!

 

Sweet :) You got that also? I got that when I put up the wireless, and its on a 166mhz and works like a dream!

 

But yeah, I also have noticed a lot of unusual popups lately...

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Originally posted by The_One

... it has a feature to completely remove not just pop-ups, but banner ads also! I'm surfing the net (and LucasForums) completely advert free - it really is wonderful :D

WebWasher does the same thing, and it's free.

 

I agree with you about using common sense up to a point: now that even sites I trust (Lucasforums for one) have ads that are trying to infect my PC with all-sorts-of-crapware without even clicking on them, it has become almost impossible to be online and to rely solely on my own judgement to know what sites and links are shady and, what might be legit.

Even with what I think is a highly developed sense of paranoia about the Web, I still occasionally find myself in places where I'm grateful to have the extra protection of various software filters and shields to keep me clean while I try to slink away unnoticed.

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