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Security risks for home users

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Security risks for home users

 
 

Security risks for home users

There are many other threats than viruses and malware

 

Email spoofing

Email "spoofing" is when an email message appears to have originated from one source when it actually was sent from another source. Email spoofing is often an attempt to trick the user into making a damaging statement or releasing sensitive information (such as passwords).


Spoofed email can range from harmless pranks to social engineering ploys. Examples of the latter include:

  • email claiming to be from a system administrator requesting users to change their passwords to a specified string and threatening to suspend their account if they do not comply
  • email claiming to be from a person in authority requesting users to send them a copy of a password file or other sensitive information

While service providers may request that you change your password, they will not specify what you should change it to. Also, most legitimate service providers would never ask you to send them any password information via email. If you suspect that you may have received a spoofed email from someone with malicious intent, you should contact your service provider's support personnel immediately. Also, never follow a link that may be provided to change a password. If you want to change your password, go to that site directly.

Back door and remote administration programs

On Windows computers, three tools commonly used by intruders to gain remote access to your computer are BackOrifice, Netbus, and SubSeven. These back door or remote administration programs, once installed, allow other people to access and control your computer.

Mobile code (Java, JavaScript, and ActiveX)

There have been reports of problems with "mobile code" (e.g., Java, JavaScript, and ActiveX). These are programming languages that let web developers write code that is executed by your web browser. Although the code is generally useful, it can be used by intruders to gather information (such as which websites you visit) or to run malicious code on your computer. It is possible to disable Java, JavaScript, and ActiveX in your web browser. We recommend that you do so if you are browsing websites that you are not familiar with or do not trust.

Physical theft

Physical theft of a computer, of course, results in the loss of confidentiality and availability, and (assuming the computer is ever recovered) makes the integrity of the data stored on the disk suspect. Regular system backups (with the backups stored somewhere away from the computer) allow for recovery of the data, but backups alone cannot address confidentiality. Cryptographic tools are available that can encrypt data stored on a computer's hard disk.

As always, call us or chat with us at www.WickedEasyFix.com

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