Articles in Category: Security

Should I Accept My Security Software’s Recommendation of What to Remove?

Should you trust your security software to make the right recommendations? Typically, yes, as long as you’re using reputable software.

How Do I Encrypt a Disk?

For many, it’s important to be able to encrypt a disk entirely. Particularly if a portable machine contains sensitive data, whole-disk encryption is key.

How Do I Encrypt a Folder?

It’s not uncommon to want to encrypt a folder and all it contains. There are several techniques to encrypt a folder, each with pros and cons.

How Do I Encrypt a File?

Since most encryption tools are designed to encrypt collections of files, the best approach to encrypt a file isn’t always obvious. I’ll look at a couple of alternatives.

Internet Safety: 7 Steps to Keeping Your Computer Safe on the Internet

Internet safety is difficult, yet critical. Here are seven key steps to keep your computer safe on the internet.

Do I Need this Add-on Recommended by this Software Installation?

Many installers include offers of additional software packages. If you don’t pay attention, you could end up with software you don’t need or want.

Possible LastPass Phishing Vulnerability

News broke over the weekend regarding a potential phishing vulnerability that could lead you to give a hacker your Lastpass master password.

Is My ISP Calling Me to Clear Up My Problems with Windows?

In a brazen scam attempt, you may get a phone call from someone claiming to be your ISP or other service provider to “help” you with your Windows problems. Don’t fall for it.

How do I change my LastPass master password?

It’s not something we do often, but occasionally it’s important to be able to change your LastPass master password.

Removing a Redirect Virus

A redirect virus can fool your browser into going to malicious web sites without your knowledge. I’ll outline my experience detecting and removing one.

I’ve Had My Credit Card Compromised Three Times; How Do I Prevent This From Happening Again?

There are some practices to help you avoid having your credit card compromised; but most card theft is typically out of our control.

How Do I Give Someone a Laptop Without Including Access to My Accounts?

It’s not easy to give someone a laptop without giving them access to your personal accounts. Depending on intent and trust, there are steps you can take.

How Do I Remove a Website from My Computer?

How to remove a website from a computer is a common question, yet it actually doesn’t make sense – websites aren’t on your computer. I’ll look at what is.

I Got a Call from Microsoft and Allowed Them Access to My Computer. What Do I Do Now?

A very common scam has people supposedly from Microsoft or your ISP or other authorities calling to help you with computer problems. Don’t fall for it.

How Do I Disable Remembered Passwords in My Browser?

Web browsers aren’t necessarily the most secure approach to saving your login passwords. I’ll show you how to disable the feature and clear out any previously remembered passwords in IE, Firefox and Chrome.

Do privacy apps really keep me private?

Privacy on the internet means different things to different people. I discuss three different privacy applications out there, explain what exactly each does, and offer some of my own thoughts.

Is anti-virus dead?

Anti-malware tools have never been 100% solutions – but, despite what we hear on the news, they are far from dead!

How can big services still have security breaches?

When you think about the complexity of today’s systems it’s kind of amazing, really, that we don’t have more breaches!

Is there Any Reason to Use a VPN at Home?

If you are secured behind your own router in your own home, a VPN service is probably not necessary … though there are a few scenarios where you may want to consider it.

Can spyware see what you did before the spyware was installed?

When a hacker gets ahold of your computer they can do anything. Keeping them off is the best plan.

Is there software that allows someone to track my emails and texts?

The bad guys can do anything they want to your computer if they can gain access.

If we login to a site securely will our other activities be secure?

Once you are out of https pages you are out of encryption. But there is one good way to secure all your online activities.

Is It Safe to Stay Logged in to My Password Vault?

Remember, the goal is to keep malware off your computer, not to try and manage it once it’s watching you. But there is another security hazard you may not be thinking about.

Why would scanning a disk be quick, but just a file on it be slow?

If that large file is a backup image, then maybe your anti-malware tool knows what I know… that there’s no point in scanning it.

How do I safely switch from one security tool to another?

If you follow a few security measures it’s perfectly safe to uninstall an old anti-malware program and then install your new choice.

Can I Delete What My Anti-malware Program Puts in Quarantine?

Quarantine gives you the option to “rescue” files you might want. Of course there is one way to make sure you always have an extra copy of everything…

Why is my machine so slow after a recovery from malware?

Not only is malware written with bad intent, but it is often written badly. It can leave a mark on your computer’s performance even after it’s been removed.

Is It Safe to Download from Download Sites?

Download sites are just too risky these days – unless there is no way to avoid them. Even then, be very careful in your selections.

Would deleting Facebook help clear up a malware infection?

Deleting Facebook won’t help, so I’ll look at more general approaches to removing Potentially Unwanted Programs that are, effectively, malware.

Is My ISP’s Router Safe to Use?

There are a number of compelling reasons to use the router your ISP provides for you. Ongoing support is one. And switching to another router won’t necessarily do anything to guard your data.

Is It Safe to Let Websites Remember Me?

Safety in your internet browsing depends on how secure you really need to be! So let’s take a look at what remembering a login really means.

Can Malware Authors Hijack My Anti-malware Software?

Once a hacker has control of your machine they can do anything they want. So yes, they will try to disable your anti-malware… and more!

Should I take the security protection offered after the most recent security breach?

Hackers are very good at sending emails that look like they come from legitimate companies. So, how do you tell the truth from a lie?

Could a Hacked Computer Record My Skype Video Calls?

Are you curious what might happen if a hacker was in control of your computer? The question really is “What can’t they do?”

Does deleting things really delete things?

Deleting items on your computer usually doesn’t wipe them clean. That’s an extra step.

Should I Cover My Webcam When Not in Use?

Sure, you can cover your webcam with tape. But that won’t solve the real problem… you’ve got malware on your computer!

Can I trust this site or utility?

There are a number of steps you can take to help determine if an unfamiliar utility is safe.

Can I get malware from a picture?

Typically there’s no need to be terrified of clicking on images… as long as you know what to look for and how to manage your protection.

Is the internet just full of scams?

Many advertisements of computer products include promises that they can’t keep, or know that they won’t keep. By making things seem much worse than they actually are they attempt to entice – or even scare – you into purchase tools you simply don’t need.

How Do I Erase Traces of a File I Moved to an External Disk?

Moving a file almost always leaves traces behind. So deleting any file securely is only the first step.

Why does this malware keep coming back?

There are tools out there that can remove malware completely so that it does not come back. But it’s worth taking a look at your own internet habits.

Why haven’t you mentioned CryptoPrevent?

Preventing one type of malware is not going to help you in the long run. And if it does help in the short run… then you may have a bigger problem!

If My Anti-virus is Working Properly, Do I Still Need a Firewall?

There is no such thing as perfect anti-virus software, so it’s wise to have another line of defense when online.

Do I Need to Worry About the Latest Security Breach?

That’s a composite of several questions that I’ve received relating to a recent theft of something like two million user accounts and passwords. I’ll address this specific incident, but I also want to discuss some things to consider with any large scale account theft.

Why does this ad imply I have a criminal record?

It can be pretty frightening when a search result delivers back to you the term you were searching for as an ad… particularly if you were searching for your name. But it might not be any more sinister than that.

Do I Need to Deactivate My Old Anti-virus Before Installing the New One?

It’s best to uninstall old anti-virus software before installing a new one, assuming you make sure to stay safe during the transition.

Should My Anti-virus Scans Include My External Drives?

Malware can certainly insert itself on external drives. The question is how high is the risk?

Is Shockwave Player safe?

The security of Shockwave, like many programs, depends on how you use it, and if you keep it up to date.

How safe is iCloud?

When you put your privacy in the hands of online companies it’s going to boil down to: How much do you trust them?

What Information Does a Laptop Leak on a Wireless Network?

There is very little about your computer that can be transmitted over a WiFi connection… provided you know how to keep yourself safe on the internet.