I saw an assertion last week that Yahoo and Gmail accounts are less secure than an account that came straight from your ISP. Perhaps there was a time when this was true, but no longer. Today there are reasons to believe the exact opposite is true.
So, no, you don’t have to apologize for using a Yahoo or a Gmail account.
I’m a security professional by trade, with two certifications. I’m not responsible for defending your computer networks, but I want your networks to be secure. There’s a really simple reason for that. If your computer and your network is secure, then it isn’t attacking mine. Or anyone else’s.
Several fellow subscribers to a train-related interest group that I like got hacked recently, and have been sending out spam messages. They’ve received a lot of advice in the hours since. Some of it has been good, and some not as good. So I tried to think of some things that people could do in about 30 minutes to keep the crooks at bay.
Incidentally, the computer crooks won’t be going away. Computer crime happens because the criminals can make more money doing that than doing something legal. The only way to make it stop is to make it too hard, so that getting a real job becomes more profitable. You won’t solve that problem in 30 minutes, but if we all take that single step down that road, we’ll make the world that much safer. So, with that, let’s roll up our sleeves. Read more
One of my coworkers is being required to get a Security+ certification, and asked me for advice. She’s gone to class, read some books, and she’s going to another class on TCP/IP, but she’s just not comfortable yet. I gave her some Security+ test taking tips.
Since other people might be in her situation, I figure it’s worth writing about. Read more
John C Dvorak asks what war we’re waging on hackers. While war may not be the best choice of words, because it’s not exactly a conventional war, there’s no question there’s something going on, and we’re not winning it right now.
The latest salvo is that someone in China is building a botnet using Macintoshes. Read more
The so-called wi-fi golden era is over, and apparently being glad about it makes me an absolutist.
But John C. Dvorak is wrong. This isn’t about making people pay for Internet access. It’s pure security. Toilets and drinking fountains are free because the majority of people don’t abuse them. The Internet can’t be wide open and free like a public restroom because when it was totally wide open and free in the 1990s, too many people abused it. Read more
Gawker founder Nick Denton (home of Mac Hacker, er, Lifehacker; Gizmodo; io9; Jalopnik; and formerly Consumerist) says online comments aren’t worth the trouble.
I agree and disagree.
Blogging pioneer John Dominik, inspired by my Michelangelo memories, wrote about his memories of viruses later in the decade. So now I’ll take inspiration of him and share my memories of some of those viruses. I searched my archives, and at the time it was going on, I didn’t write a lot. I was tired and angry, as you can tell from the terse posts I did write.
I got a comment over the weekend suggesting that I could really take things to the next level with photos, illustrations, and videos. I don’t know if it was a serious comment or spam (the link provided looked very suspicious), but I’ll address the comment.
Online shoestore Zappos.com got hacked. Among other things, the hackers got names, addresses, e-mail addresses, and encrypted passwords. That’s not as bad as getting unencrypted passwords, but there are some things you need to do immediately if you shop at Zappos.com.
I saw a story yesterday about how e-readers are getting cheaper, but e-books are rising in cost.
In some cases, the e-books cost as much as, or more than a paper copy of the book. Which, as anyone with any knowledge of printing should be able to tell you, is ridiculous. Most of the cost of a paper copy of the book is printing and distribution. Or, at least that’s what they used to tell writers. When people paid $24.95 for a copy of my book, published in 2000, I saw about $1.75 of it. I’m probably not supposed to tell you that, but I just did. The printing and distribution costs of an e-book are negligible, so if the author, who does most of the work, is supposed to be able to get by on $1.75, shouldn’t the publisher and retailer find a way to do the same? So divide the revenue evenly between the author, publisher, and retailer, sell the e-book for $5.25 and, and everything’s fair. They could even put the book on sale for $2.97 sometimes, drop everyone’s share to 99 cents, and hope to make it up in increased sales.
But here are some things you can do while you wait for publishers to get a dose of reality.