Someone I know got a tech support scam popup that said their computer was being hacked. I said to bring the computer over. I wanted to see it.
I found the malicious site in the browser history–I’ll tell you how to do that after I finish my story–and pulled the page back up. The computer played an MP3 file with a scary-sounding message and urged me to call an 888 number. So I called. I got voicemail. I left a message.
Continue reading A scammer called me a fraud
Sometimes you may need to change your printer’s IP address, such as after you rearrange your network. It’s not hard to do, it’s just not always immediately obvious where the settings are.
This method works in Windows 7 and Windows 10. It probably also works in Vista and Windows 8, but I don’t have those versions anymore.
Continue reading Change your printer’s IP address in Windows
In the past, I’ve recommended Secunia PSI as a way to keep your systems up to date. I know from my own experience that it helps, but I also know it doesn’t work 100 percent of the time.
When it comes to security, nothing is more critical than making sure your updates are applying correctly. That’s where my employer comes in, with Qualys Browser Check.
Continue reading Double-check your security with Qualys Browser Check
I picked up a couple of refurbished Linksys EA6200 routers this past weekend. For whatever reason, DD-WRT isn’t officially supported on them, though it does seem to be a popular DD-WRT router. A lot of people make the upgrade far more difficult than they need to. With some simple hacks, Linksys EA6200 DD-WRT installation is pretty straightforward.
I came up with an 18-step process that I simplified just as much as I could. Unlike some methods I’ve seen, I don’t have you editing any binary files or creating custom startup scripts.
Continue reading Linksys EA6200 DD-WRT installation
If you regularly visit forums online, particularly forums powered by the forum software Vbulletin, you ought to change your forum passwords right now. The longer and more random you make them, the better.
Continue reading Why to change forum passwords right now
I had a Java app pointing at a Websense (now known as Forcepoint) proxy server. The proxy server wasn’t working, and the app was giving me a 407 error.
We had Websense set to require NTLM authorization, but it turns out Java won’t do NTLM, so the Java traffic wasn’t even showing up in the monitor.
My workaround was to have users open a browser, then go to any web page immediately before opening the app. By letting the browser authenticate for it, the Java app worked thanks to Websense having the credentials cached.
If you want, you can launch the applet with a batch file that uses IEcapt to hit any web page, then starts the applet.
I’ve been asked a few times now for my recommended DD-WRT settings, or at least my good-enough settings. I think that’s a great idea, so I’ll walk through how I configure a DD-WRT router. Follow these steps and I can almost guarantee you’ll have the most secure network on your block.
For the purposes of this tutorial, I am going to assume you are configuring DD-WRT as your primary router.
Continue reading Recommended DD-WRT settings
One of the best things you can do to improve your security in a corporate environment is to limit the use of Java, or whitelist Java. Undoubtedly there will be one or more legacy web applications your company uses that require Java, and it’s almost inevitable that at least two of them will be certified for one and only one version of the JRE, and it won’t be the same one.
Believe it or not there’s a solution to the problem of conflicting JREs, but it took me years to find it, because I had no idea that Oracle called it “Deployment Rule Set.” The secret’s out now. If you run Java, and you want security, you need Deployment Rule Set.
Continue reading Whitelist Java to provide better security and a better user experience
Last week, Symantec discovered a worm that infects routers and takes measures to make them more secure. For lack of anything else to call it, Symantec is calling it malware, and most of the security echo chamber is probably howling over this, but I think I understand why it was created.
Continue reading Vigilante router security
There are any number of pie-in-the-sky pundits who will tell you when a computer starts to get slow, to format the hard drive, reinstall Windows, and go on your merry way.
Unfortunately it’s not always realistic. I don’t clean up PCs all that often anymore, but here’s what I do when I need to.
Continue reading Cleaning a PC when fdisk-format-reinstall isn’t an option