Security

Wed
03
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

XoftSpy Spyware Tool: Legitimate or Scam?

Infopackets Reader Diane D. writes: " Dear Dennis, I recently found a program called 'XoftSpy' while browsing the 'net. The web site offered a free download to check my PC, so I tried it. After it ran a check, it came up with 97 registry faults, and ... 10 file faults. Can you tell me if you have heard of this program, or even given it a try, and what the results were? I am considering purchasing the full program, but would like to know if there is anything similar that does the same job, and comparisons please. " My response: To be honest, I have never used or heard of "XoftSpy ... (view more)

Thu
28
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Why do I have to type my email address twice?

Infopackets Reader 'Katie' asks: " Why is it that some sites ask that you type in your email address twice using a web form? What does typing in your email address two times have to do with anything? It's simple enough to cut and paste the email ... address into the second line, but a hassle. What do you think? " My response: A web site with a form to enter an email address twice is for the purpose of verifying that you've typed in the address correctly. For example: any web site with a subscription service (via email) would implement this type of verification scheme to limit the number ... (view more)

Wed
27
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Alert: eBay and SquareTrade scam

Are you being scammed? Need to know the definitive answer right now? READ THIS ARTICLE and then come back to this page when you're finished (if you like). -- Infopackets Reader Rupert H. writes: " Dear Dennis, Last Sunday, I saw a one-day sale for a ... Harley Davidson Sportster 883 motorbike on eBay. The seller had around 500 or 600 positive feedbacks. The sale required that you contact the buyer first before you were allowed to bid, and so I did. The seller wanted to do business through a company called Square Trade. I checked out the website and the company seemed legitimate. 'Square ... (view more)

Wed
27
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

More Security Issues concerning the new Windows Firewall

Recall -- Yesterday, I posted a comment on the fact that the new Windows Firewall (present in XP Service Pack 2) does not monitor outgoing traffic. As we discovered, this is especially problematic for Spyware attacks, as it may be possible for a ... Spyware program to extract personal information from your computer and relay it to a third party -- all without you knowing about it. Infopackets Reader Tom M. writes: " Dennis: [in reference to your original article], you mused as to why Microsoft hasn't followed the ideology of full firewall protection. Might I cynically speculate that it may ... (view more)

Tue
26
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

XP Service Pack 2 Windows Firewall: does little to stop Spyware attacks

I'm making oodles of progress in my quest to finish a Failsafe guide on installing XP Service Pack 2 (SP2). The majority of the eBook is completed; all that is left now is to finish off the "post installation" section, make a video tutorial, answer ... 300 emails related to SP2, and put together a mini FAQ (frequently asked questions). A lot of work? You bet -- but certainly not impossible. I really thought I'd have this guide complete last week, but ran into a bit of a delay when I realized that it would be best to streamline a major portion of the book in order to simplify and ... (view more)

Thu
21
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Security Risk: hidden Admin account in WinXP, Part 2

Yesterday , I wrote an article concerning a hidden Administrator account in Windows XP. As we discovered, this poses a significant security risk (especially for XP Home users) because it means that virtually anyone can gain unrestricted local access ... to the machine if the Administrator password is left blank. Side note: The term "remote access" means to control / gain access to a computer which is physically housed in another location (typically over a network, such as the Internet). In a similar respect, gaining "local access" to a computer means to utilize the machine at ... (view more)

Wed
20
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Zone Alarm Pro: ad blocker gives Garbled HTML code?

Infopackets Reader Les M. writes: " Dear Dennis, Firstly, well done and many thanks for a most informative newsletter. Today I am writing you because I have a most annoying and frustrating problem with web pages not displaying properly. I use ... Windows XP (Home Edition), and have recently upgraded to broadband (with AOL 9.0) ... [What is happening is that] web pages are loaded through Internet Explorer with at least a paragraph of garbled HTML code at the top, followed by other odd elements of the page scattered randomly, and sometimes repeated 3 or 4 times down the page. I suspected that ... (view more)

Wed
20
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Security Risk: hidden Admin account in WinXP

Recall -- In Yesterday's Visitor Feedback, Infopackets Reader Marie B. asked how to enable the administrator user account in Windows XP. " I am the only user of my computer which has Windows XP installed. How do I sign into my computer as the ... 'administrator', rather than as my individual name? I understand that administration access is required to make certain changes to Windows. I don't need to adjust anything at this time, but would like to know how to do this in the future (just in case). " In my response to Marie, I suggested that the administrator user account name was disabled ... (view more)

Tue
19
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

More Windows XP Service Pack 2 questions?

Infopackets Reader Tina D. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am greatly anticipating the release of your Windows XP Service Pack 2 installation guide. According to my Automatic Updates, Service Pack 2 has already been downloaded onto my machine but not yet ... installed. I am iffy about installing SP2 largely because I have heard that it may not be compatible with some programs. Have you released the guide yet? Did I miss the announcement? I've checked your newsletter archive page but don't see anything pertaining to the release. " My response: As of this moment, the guide is 85% complete. I ... (view more)

Tue
05
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Does GuruNet contain Spyware?

Infopackets Reader Doug L. writes: " Dear Dennis, After reading your wonderful acticle on GuruNet , I downloaded and installed it on my machine. To my surprise, my Spyware detection utility (SpyDoctor) reported GuruNet as a malware BHO (Browser ... Helper Object). Can you comment on this? " Side note: a Browser Helper Object is a 'plug-in' for Internet Explorer which allows software developers to customize and control browsing sessions. BHO's are typically instantiated [initialized] by .DLL files which are located in the Windows System / System32 folder. My response: Unfortunately, your ... (view more)

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