Articles

Thu
18
Apr
John Lister's picture

MS Office Now Top Target for Hackers: Report

Hackers are now far more likely to target Microsoft Office than web browsers according to a security firm. Kaspersky Labs says the big problem is that fixing some of the most common MS Office flaws would cause serious compatibility problems. The ... figures are based on the number of users affected, rather than the sheer volume of attacks. That's arguably more informative as it doesn't treat all attacks as equally significant. Kaspersky compared the last three months of 2018 with the same period in 2016 and found a dramatic difference in just two years. Browsers and Flash Less of a Problem In the ... (view more)

Wed
17
Apr
John Lister's picture

Ad Blockers Could Be Hijacked

A feature used in several ad blocker tools could be used to "booby trap" websites according to a security researchers. It appears to be a low but credible risk. The problem is all to do with the way many ad blockers work. In simple terms, they ... maintain a blacklist of URLs that host ads and other unwanted material. Whenever a website tries to load an ad from an URL on the list, it's blocked from doing so. Since last summer some ad blockers, including Adblock Plus, added support for a feature called "$rewrite." With this feature, the ad blocker won't just block the unwanted URL from ... (view more)

Tue
16
Apr
John Lister's picture

Internet Explorer Bug Affects All Windows Users

A security researcher says an Internet Explorer flaw could affect people who don't even use the outdated browser. It's a reminder of the dangers of opening unexpected email attachments. John Page has published details of the bug which affects ... version 11 of Internet Explorer (the latest) on both Windows 7, 8 and 10. The bug involves a file format called MHT. It's a format that's not used much these days but used to be common back when Internet Explorer was king. It's used to download an entire web page (including images and other media) into a single file. It's not needed today as browsers can ... (view more)

Fri
12
Apr
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Windows 10 Taskbar Unreadable (Text too Dark)

Infopackets Reader Jerry B. writes: " Dear Dennis, With Windows 7 reaching end of life in January 2020, I decided to upgrade my machine to Windows 10. Everything went fine without a hitch, except for one small issue. The Windows 10 task bar is very ... difficult to read - especially the clock and any running tasks. I have another Windows 10 machine that I use daily and I can clearly see the writing on the task bar. I have searched Google for ' windows 10 taskbar unreadable ' and 'windows 10 task bar font black' and 'windows 10 task bar text too dark', and similar searches, but I can seem to nail ... (view more)

Thu
11
Apr
John Lister's picture

Website Sign-Ups Hijacked by Email Spammers

Scammers have found a creative way to bypass spam filters, effectively tricking legitimate sites into sending the message on their behalf. It's a reminder that human skepticism is always a key part of cyber security. The new scam was spotted by Sam ... Cook of Comparitech who spotted something amiss in an email from the British Newspaper "Archive," - a perfectly legitimate organization. The scam email asked him to confirm his email address for registering an account with the site. The problem there was that Cook hadn't attempted to register. In fact, this was the first time he ever ... (view more)

Wed
10
Apr
John Lister's picture

Microsoft Gives Up on USB Removal Warnings

Microsoft is changing a default setting in Windows 10 that means it's now OK to remove a USB device without properly "ejecting" it from the operating system. It's an acknowledgement that many users simply don't use the "eject" feature. The fact is, ... using the "Safely remove hardware and eject media" on the Windows task bar (near the clock) is the correct way to eject USB media. This method is necessary because of read and write buffers to the device are constantly active. If the buffers are not flushed before the device is properly ejected, it could mean ... (view more)

Tue
09
Apr
John Lister's picture

Microsoft Makes Windows 10 Updates Optional

Microsoft is going back to its old policy of letting users choose what Windows updates they get and when they get them, albeit with some restrictions. It's also going to put updates through more testing before rolling them out. One of the biggest ... change (and perhaps most controversial) with Windows 10 was the abandonment of the old policy by which users could take a case-by-case approach to downloading updates . The default in Windows 10 for home users has been that everything downloads and installs automatically, though exactly when this happens varies from device to device. That's partly ... (view more)

Mon
08
Apr
Dennis Faas's picture

Scammed by Smart PC Experts? Here's What to Do

Infopackets Reader Bill H. writes: " Dear Dennis, I was on Amazon.com and suddenly a warning message appeared, stating that my PC was infected with a virus and to call 1-866-666-1917 to fix the problem. There was no way to close the window. I called ... the number and spoke to a fellow at Smart PC Experts ( smartpcexperts.com ), who had a very thick Indian accent . They convinced me that my PC was infected with the Zeus Trojan and it needed to be fixed. I allowed them remote access to my machine and they installed some software. After that, they demanded $499 as payment for their services. I was ... (view more)

Thu
04
Apr
John Lister's picture

Facebook Asks New Users for Password to Email Account

Facebook has asked some new users to provide passwords for their email accounts. It's provoked fury among critics who say it goes against basic rules of online security. Often when a user signs up for an online service they provide an email address ... as a form of identification. The service will normally check the address is genuine by sending a code or a link in an email to the address, thus proving the user does indeed "own" that address. However, some people signing up to Facebook have instead been seeing a screen that offers to confirm the email address automatically. The screen includes a ... (view more)

Wed
03
Apr
John Lister's picture

Microsoft adds 'Tamper Protection' to Windows Defender

Microsoft will add a "tamper protection" feature to the built in antivirus tools in an upcoming Windows 10 update. It's designed to stop malware from switching off key security features in Microsoft Defender. Initially the changes will be available ... for Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection, which is a subscription service for businesses. However, Microsoft appears to have revealed it will later become available to home users of Windows 10. (Source: zdnet.com ) The idea is to prevent rogue apps from disabling some of the weapons in the Microsoft Defender arsenal, in turn making it far ... (view more)

Tue
02
Apr
John Lister's picture

Facebook's News Feed to be a bit Less Mysterious

Facebook is to tell users why a particular post has appeared in their news feed. However, it won't be telling the full story. One of the most controversial elements of Facebook is its news feed algorithm, which is responsible for showing 'news' from ... friends when a user logs into Facebook. At one point, this simply consisted of everything the user's friends had posted or shared in chronological order. This arguably became impractical, as both the number of users and the range of content users could share or otherwise interact with had rocketed. The argument is that the sheer amount of content ... (view more)

Fri
29
Mar
Dennis Faas's picture

Scammed by Right PC Experts? Here's What to Do

Infopackets Reader Cindee T. writes: " Dear Dennis, The other day I was using my web browser and suddenly received a message that my computer was infected and to call 855-551-7666 to have it fixed. There was no way to close the warning screen - I ... was scared and didn't know what to do! I called the number and spoke to ' Right PC Experts ' ( rightpcexperts.com ). The person I spoke to had a very thick Indian accent . To fix the virus warning, he remotely logged into my computer and installed a bunch of security programs, by the names of 'Anti hacking', 'Email Security', 'Network Firewall' and ' ... (view more)

Thu
28
Mar
John Lister's picture

Google's New Amp Email: Good or Bad?

Google is to make emails more interactive. It's billed as offering "more engaging and actionable email experiences" but might appeal to marketers more than users. It's all to do with the release of what Google calls "AMP for Email." AMP (Accelerated ... Mobile Pages) already exists and is a project designed to have web pages open quickly on mobile devices even if they contain media such as photos or videos. AMP for Email makes it possible to send a document in AMP format, but have it delivered as an email. At its most basic level, that should mean emails will be quicker to load, rather ... (view more)

Wed
27
Mar
John Lister's picture

Apple Devices Need 51 Important Security Updates

Apple has released a patch for mobile devices which covers 51 security flaws. It's sparked debate over Apple's security levels and the way it issues such updates. The patch is for iOS, taking it up to version 12.2. Apple doesn't issue standalone ... security updates. Instead, it builds it into the main update for the system, which also includes new features or bug fixes. (Source: apple.com ) The most notable fix is a bug in an API (application program interface), which lets third party software interact with Apple services. In this case, the API bug could allow malware to access an iPhone, iPad ... (view more)

Tue
26
Mar
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Permanently Disable WiFi on Windows 10

Infopackets Reader 'JustRosy' writes: " Dear Dennis, I have a laptop that I use daily, and for security reasons I want my WiFi permanently disabled in Windows 10 . Unfortunately my Windows 10 laptop WiFi does not have an 'on / off' switch which ... would disable my WiFi permanently. Instead, I have been using Windows 10 "airplane mode" to disable the WiFi, but this doesn't work 100% of the time because my WiFi seems to activate spontaneously. I am super paranoid about having a WiFi connection because I don't believe there is a 100% secure WiFi, and therefore I don't ever want to use WiFi on my ... (view more)

Subscribe to Articles