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The Basic To Securing Your PC

 

We all have gone online more and more people are using their PC:s  for everything from communication to online banking and investing to shopping. As we do these things on a more regular basis, we open ourselves up to potential hackers, attackers and crackers. While some may be looking to phish your personal information and identity for resale, others simply just want to use your computer as a platform from which to attack other unknowing targets.

    Below are a few easy, cost-effective steps you can take to make your computer more secure.

  1. Always make backups of important information and store in a safe place separate from your computer.
  2. Update and patch your operating system, web browser and software frequently. If you have a Windows operating system, start by going to www.windowsupdate.microsoft.com and running the update wizard. This program will help you find the latest patches for your Windows computer. 

    Also go to www.officeupdate.microsoft.com to locate possible patches for your Office programs.

  3. Install a firewall. Without a good firewall, viruses, worms, Trojans, malware and adware can all easily access your computer from the Internet. Consideration should be given to the benefits and differences between hardware and software based firewall programs.
  4. Review your browser and email settings for optimum security. Why should you do this? Active-X and JavaScript are often used by hackers to plant malicious programs into your computers. While cookies are relatively harmless in terms of security concerns, they do still track your movements on the Internet to build a profile of you. At a minimum set your security setting for the “internet zone” to High, and your “trusted sites zone” to Medium Low.
  5. Install antivirus software and set for automatic updates so that you receive the most current versions.
  6. Do not open unknown email attachments. It is simply not enough that you may recognize the address from which it originates because many viruses can spread from a familiar address.
  7. Do not run programs from unknown origins. Also, do not send these types of programs to friends and coworkers because they contain funny or amusing stories or jokes. They may contain a Trojans horse waiting to infect a computer.
  8. Disable hidden filename extensions. By default, the Windows operating system is set to “hide file extensions for known file types”. Disable this option so that file extensions display in Windows. Some file extensions will, by default, continue to remain hidden, but you are more likely to see any unusual file extensions that do not belong.
  9. Turn off your computer and disconnect from the network when not using the computer. A hacker can not attack your computer when you are disconnected from the network or the computer is off.

Consider making a boot disk on a floppy disk in case your computer is damaged or compromised by a malicious program. Obviously, you need to take this step before you experience a hostile breach of your system.

Greek Myth or Computer Nemesis? The name of the game is "Trojan Horse"

We have all heard the term "Trojan Horse," but what exactly is it?

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

"Trojan horse", or Trojan, is that appears to perform a desirable function for the user prior to run or install but instead facilitates unauthorized access of the user's computer system. "It is a harmful piece of software that looks legitimate. Users are typically tricked into loading and executing it on their systems. "Trojan Horse" story in Greek mythology. From Wikipedia ends here.

A "Trojan Horse" is a destructive program that masquerades as a harmless application. Unlike viruses, Trojan Horses do not replicate themselves, but they can be just as destructive. One of the most dangerous examples of a Trojan is a program that promises to rid your PC of viruses but instead introduces viruses into your computer.

The Trojan can be tricky. Who hasn’t been online and had an advertisement pop up claiming to be able to rid your computer of some nasty virus? Or, even more frightening, you receive an email that claims to be alerting you to a new virus that can threaten your computer. The sender promises to quickly eradicate, or protect, your computer from viruses if you simply download their “free”, attached software into your computer. You may be skeptical but the software looks legitimate and the company sounds reputable. You proceed to take them up on their offer and download the software. In doing so, you have just potentially exposed yourself to a massive headache and your computer to a laundry list of ailments. 

When a Trojan is activated, numerous things can happen. Some Trojans are more annoying than malicious. Some of the less annoying Trojans may choose to change your desktop settings or add silly desktop icons. The more serious Trojans can erase or overwrite data on your computer, corrupt files, spread other malware such as viruses, spy on the user of a computer and secretly report data like browsing habits to other people, log keystrokes to steal information such as passwords and credit card numbers, phish for bank account details (which can be used for criminal activities), and even install a backdoor into your computer system so that they can come and go as they please.

To increase your odds of not encountering a Trojan, follow these guidelines. 

 

1.        Remain diligent
Trojans can infect your computer through rogue websites, instant messaging, and emails with attachments. Do not download anything into your computer unless you are 100 percent sure of its sender or source.

2.        Ensure that your operating system is always up-to-date. If you are running a Microsoft Windows operating system, this is essential.

3.        Install reliable anti-virus software. It is also important that you download any updates frequently to catch all new Trojan Horses, viruses, and worms. 

4.        Be sure that the anti-virus program that you choose can also scan e-mails and files downloaded through the internet.

5.        Consider installing a firewall. A firewall is a system that prevents unauthorized use and access to your computer. A firewall is not going to eliminate your computer virus problems, but when used in conjunction with regular operating system updates and reliable anti-virus software, it can provide additional security and protection for your computer.

Nothing can guarantee the security of your computer 100 percent. However, you can continue to improve your computer's security and decrease the possibility of infection by consistently following these guidelines.

Here are some more from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: This time about PC viruses.

A computer virus is a computer program that can copy itself and infect a computer. The term virus is also commonly but erroneously used to refer to other types of malware, including but not limited to adware and spyware programs that do not have the reproductive ability. A true virus can spread from one computer to another (in some form of executable code) when its host is taken to the target computer; for instance because a user sent it over a network or the Internet, or carried it on a removable medium such as a floppy disk, CD, DVD, or USB drive.

Viruses can increase their chances of spreading to other computers by infecting files on a network file system or a file system that is accessed by another computer.

As stated above, the term computer virus is sometimes used as a catch-all phrase to include all types of malware, even those that do not have the reproductive ability. Malware includes computer viruses, computer worms "Trojan horses", most spyware, dishonest adware and other malicious and unwanted software, including true viruses. Viruses are sometimes confused with worms and Trojan horses, which are technically different. A worm can exploit security vulnerabilities to spread itself automatically to other computers through networks, while a Trojan horse is a program that appears harmless but hides malicious functions. Worms and Trojan horses, like viruses, may harm a computer system's data or performance. Some viruses and other malware have symptoms noticeable to the computer user, but many are surreptitious or simply do nothing to call attention to themselves. Some viruses do nothing beyond reproducing themselves. Thanks to Wikipedia.

The Firewall and Antivirus software we have on this site can we, recommend but again remember to set your operative PC system to automatic upgrade.

Sincerely

Reggie Engdahl



 






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Genie Timeline makes it easy to continuously protect all your files no matter where they are stored; on your computer, external and network drives. Genie Timeline works automatically to protect new and changed files without any intervention.
 
Effortless protection for all your files

Configure your backup in 3 simple steps and you’re done! Genie Timeline scans for all your file selections from any location and backs them up.
    
Go back in Time

Use the Timeline to recover any file at a specific point of time.  

Recover deleted files

Undo mistakes with a right-click.

Track your backup wherever you go..

Use Genie Timeline mobile app for live feedback of your backup status or get email notifications of your backup status to your inbox.
Access your backed up files without the need of the software
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- Reggie Engdahl


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The family was at work ans school but they lost everything else. Mostly they sorrow the lost of photos and videos... 

SITE NAVIGATION LINKS You Find Them All Over The Pages:

 

INDEX-HOME

 

PC SECURITY

 

REN MARKETING TIPS

 

DATA

 

WEBSITE-TRAFFIC

 

RSS

 

TRAFFIC-TIPS

 

SECURE-LINKS

 

SHOP-STORE

 

ARTICLES

 

PHOTO-WORK

 

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HEALTH & WELLNESS

 

FAST-SHOP

 

AVR-VIDEO

 

AUDIO and VIDEO

 

HOSTING

 

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OPPORTUNITY

 

ABOUT-US

 

ADS TIPS & TOOLS

 

BITCOIN-CURRENCY

 

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SITE NAVIGATION LINKS You Find Them All Over The Pages:

 

INDEX-HOME

 

PC SECURITY

 

REN MARKETING TIPS

 

DATA

 

WEBSITE-TRAFFIC

 

RSS

 

TRAFFIC-TIPS

 

SECURE-LINKS

 

SHOP-STORE

 

ARTICLES

 

PHOTO-WORK

 

RELAXATION

 

HEALTH & WELLNESS

 

FAST-SHOP

 

AVR-VIDEO

 

AUDIO and VIDEO

 

HOSTING

 

SOFTWARE

 

EMAILING

 

OPPORTUNITY

 

ABOUT-US

 

ADS TIPS & TOOLS

 

BITCOIN-CURRENCY

 

AUTORESPONDER

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About Internet Fraud and Crime

The Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS)

The best way to fight internet fraud is to learn how to avoid becoming a victim. However, if you become a victim, there is help available. Below is a list of official government web resources to help you report and learn about internet fraud.

The Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) is responsible for implementing the Department's national strategies in combating computer and intellectual property crimes worldwide. CCIPS prevents, investigates, and prosecutes computer crimes by working with other government agencies, the private sector, academic institutions, and foreign counterparts.

Here is one example of big Fraud

Man Pleads Guilty to $2.3 Million in Software Piracy. This persons crime was made in connection with his sale of counterfeit and altered computer software.
According to court documents, over a three and a half year period, this man sold more than $2.3 million in copyright-infringing computer software and defrauded more than two thousand customers. He sold the software through several Internet websites operated from his home in Virginia. 

The software, much of which was shipped from overseas, included popular titles, such as Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Office, and Autodesk AutoCAD.  In addition to selling counterfeit software, he falsely represented to suppliers that he was eligible to purchase and resell the products.
But he sitting in prison now...


This Is Also For Our Help - OnGuardOnline.gov
Warning For Three Common Internet Fraud:

Work-at-Home Scams

OnGuardOnline.gov has yet to find anyone who has become rich stuffing envelopes or assembling crafts at home for a promoter. If you’re considering a work-at-home opportunity, ask questions and do some research before committing any money.

The Bait:

Ads often promise a steady income for home-based work, typically in medical claims processing, online searching, international shipping, rebate processing, envelope-stuffing, or assembling crafts and other items. The ads use variations on these themes:

Be part of one of America’s fastest growing industries.
Be your own boss.
Earn thousands of dollars every month from your own home.

The Catch:

The ads don’t say you may have to spend your own money to fulfill the terms of the assignment – placing newspaper ads, making copies of documents, or buying supplies, software, or equipment to do the job. They probably don’t say you won’t be paid for all the hours you put in, either. It’s hard to find a promoter of home-based businesses who will pay you for all the time and money you spend, and who accepts your work as up to “standards of quality.”
What You Can Do:

Legitimate home-based promoters should tell you – in writing – exactly what’s
involved in the program they’re selling. Before you commit any money to a home-
based business, ask:

What tasks will you have to do?
Will you be paid a salary or will you work on commission?
Who will pay you?
When will you get your first paycheck; how much will it be?
How much will you have to pay for the program? Include supplies, equipment, and membership fees.
What will you get for the fees you have to pay?

It is important to verify any information you get from the promoter with current workers. Try to visit them in person. Sometimes, the “references” the promoter uses are shills – people who are paid to lie about their experience working for the promoter.

You also can type the company or promoter’s name into a search engine with a word like review, complaint, or scam.

Finally, it’s a good idea to check out the promoter or company with your local consumer protection agency to see if other people have reported on their experiences.
Report Online Scams

If you believe you’ve responded to an online scam, file a complaint with:

The Federal Trade Commission
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
Your state Attorney General

Make Your Report A.S.A.P.


Lotteries and Sweepstakes Scams

Scam artists often use the promise of a valuable prize or award to entice people to send money.

The Bait:

You get a letter or an email message that claims you’ve already won a foreign lottery or an online sweepstakes. The letter may be from a government agency, a bank, a well-known national company, or a company you never heard of. Regardless of the return address, the only thing between you and your winnings: a check or wire transfer from you to cover taxes, fees, shipping costs, or insurance.

The Catch:

It’s illegal to play a foreign lottery. Any letter or email from a lottery or sweepstakes that asks you to pay taxes, fees, shipping, or insurance to claim your prize is a scam.

Some scammers ask you to send the money through a wire transfer. That’s because wire transfers are efficient: your money is transferred and available for pick up very quickly. Once it’s transferred, it’s gone. Others ask you to send a check or pay for your supposed winnings with a credit card. The reason: they use your bank account numbers to withdraw funds without your approval, or your credit card numbers to run up charges. 

What You Can Do:

An offer to play a foreign lottery can be tempting and fun, but it’s also illegal.
If a sweepstakes run by an American company is legitimate, you won’t have to pay to
enter or to win. That’s the law. No federal government agency runs or supervises a
lottery; regardless, if you have to pay, it’s a purchase, not a prize.
Report Online Scams

If you believe you’ve responded to an online scam, file a complaint with:

The Federal Trade Commission
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
Your state Attorney General...


The Three Good Thing Can Be The Bad - Debt Relief Scams

Be skeptical about broad claims to wipe out your debt. Debt negotiation can be risky, and it can have a serious, long-term effect on your ability to get credit.

The Bait:

The ads are commonplace; they tout a way to consolidate your bills into one monthly payment without borrowing further. Or they offer to stop credit harassment, foreclosures, repossessions, tax levies and garnishments, or to wipe out your debts.

The Catch:

These offers often require you to declare bankruptcy, but they rarely say so. While bankruptcy is one way to deal with serious financial problems, it's generally considered the option of last resort. The reason: it has a long-term negative impact on your creditworthiness. A bankruptcy can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years, and can hurt your ability to get credit, a job, insurance, or even a place to live. In addition, there are hurdles that you must clear before filing for bankruptcy, and it’s likely that you’ll be responsible for attorneys' fees. Get more information about debt relief and bankruptcy from the Federal Trade Commission.

What You Can Do:

If you’re having trouble paying your bills:

Talk with your creditors. They may be willing to work out a modified payment plan.
Contact a credit counseling service. These organizations work with you and your creditors to develop debt repayment plans. These plans require you to deposit money each month with the counseling service. The service then pays your creditors. Some nonprofit organizations do this for no charge; others charge a nominal fee for their service.
Carefully consider all your options before you borrow more money. While a second mortgage or home equity line of credit may allow you to consolidate your debt, they also require your home as collateral.

Report Online Scams

If you believe you’ve responded to an online scam, file a complaint with:

The Federal Trade Commission
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
Your state Attorney General
Act A.S.A.P.


Lastly The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)

This organisation to serve as a vehicle to receive, develop and refer criminal complaints regarding the rapidly expanding arena of cyber crime. The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) gives the victims of cyber crime a convenient and easy-to-use reporting mechanism that alerts authorities to suspected criminal or civil violations.
For law enforcement and regulatory agencies at the federal, state, local, tribal and international levels, IC3 provides a central referral mechanism for complaints involving Internet-related crimes.

In 2011, the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) actively pursued its mission to address crimes committed using the Internet, providing services to both victims of online crimes and to law enforcement. Statistics in this report reveal IC3’s success. IC3 marked the third year in a row that it received over 300,000 complaints, a 3.4-percent increase over the previous year. The adjusted dollar loss of complaints was $485.3 million.

The 2011 IC3 Internet Crime Report reveals both the scope of online crime and IC3’s battle against it. The most common victim complaints included FBI-related scams, identity theft and advance fee fraud.2 IC3 received and processed more than 26,000 complaints per month.

Based on victim complaints, the top five states were

California (34,169),
Florida (20,034),
Texas (18,477),
New York (15,056)
and Ohio (12,661).

Victims in California reported the highest dollar losses with a total of $70.5 million. For victims reporting financial losses, the average was $4,187.

FBI-related Scams – Scams in which a criminal poses as the FBI to defraud victims.

Identity Theft – Unauthorized use of a victim’s personal identifying information to commit fraud or other crimes.
Advance Fee Fraud – Criminals convince victims to pay a fee to receive something of value, but do not deliver anything of value to the victim.
Non-Auction/Non-Delivery of Merchandise – Purchaser does not receive items purchased.
Overpayment Fraud – An incident in which the complainant receives an invalid monetary instrument with instructions to deposit it in a bank account and send excess funds or a percentage of the deposited money back to the sender.


2011 Frequently Reported Internet Crimes

Auto-Auction Fraud

In fraudulent vehicle sales, criminals attempt to sell vehicles they do not own. Criminals create an attractive deal by advertising vehicles for sale at prices below book value. Often the sellers claim they must sell the vehicle because they are moving for work or being deployed for the military. Because of the alleged pending move, criminals refuse to meet in person or allow inspection of the vehicle, and they often attempt to rush the sale. To make the deal appear legitimate, the
criminal instructs the victim to send full or partial payment to a third-party agent via a wire transfer payment service and to fax their payment receipt to the seller as proof of payment. The criminal pockets the payment but does not deliver the vehicle.
Victims of these scams reported losses exceeding $8.2 million in 2011. With an average reported loss of more than $2,000, more than $22,700 per day was lost to these frauds, or $946.13 every hour. IC3 received a complaint of this variety approximately every two hours.


Romance Scams

In 2011, IC3 received over 5,600 complaints of romance scams in which scammers target individuals who search for companionship or romance online. Victims believe they are “dating” someone decent and honest. However, the online contact is often a criminal with a well-rehearsed script that scammers use repeatedly and successfully.
Scammers search chat rooms, dating sites, and social networking sites looking for victims. Although the principal group of victims is over 40 years old, divorced or widowed, disabled and often elderly, all demographics are at risk.
Scammers use poetry, flowers and other gifts to reel in victims, while declaring “undying love.” These criminals also use stories of severe life circumstances, tragedies, family deaths, personal injuries or other hardships to keep their victims concerned and involved in their schemes. They also ask victims to send money to help overcome alleged financial hardships.
These scams not only take a high toll on victims emotionally, but monetarily as well. In 2011, victim reported losses to various romance scams totaled $50.4 million. On average, each victim reported a loss of $8,900. At a rate of 15 complaints received per day, these scams saw daily reported losses of roughly $138,000, or more than $5,700 every hour.


Loan Intimidation Scams

IC3 receives a high volume of complaints from victims of payday loan telephone collection scams. In these scams, a caller claims that the victim is delinquent in a payday loan and must repay the loan to avoid legal consequences. The callers purport to be representatives of the FBI, Federal Legislative Department, various law firms or other legitimate-sounding agencies. They claim to be collecting debts for various companies.
One of the most insidious aspects of this scam is that the callers have accurate information about the victims, including Social Security numbers, dates of birth, addresses, employer information, bank account numbers, and names and telephone numbers of relatives and friends. The method by which the fraudsters obtained the personal information is unclear, but victims often relay that they had completed online applications for other loans or credit cards before the calls began.
The fraudsters relentlessly call the victims’ homes, cell phones and places of employment. They refuse to provide the victims any details of the alleged payday loans and become abusive when questioned. The callers threaten victims with legal actions, arrests, and in some cases physical violence if they refuse to pay.
In many cases, the callers even resort to harassment of the victims’ relatives, friends and employers.
In 2011, reported losses for victims of loan intimidation scams exceeded $8 million. At the rate of 27 complaints received per day, these scams resulted in reported losses of $934 per hour, or more than $22,000 per day.


What the Heck are Botnets?

"A botnet is comparable to compulsory military service for windows boxes"
- Stromberg  (http://project.honeynet.org/papers/bots/)

Botnets are networks of computers that hackers have infected and grouped together under their control to propagate viruses, send illegal spam, and carry out attacks that cause web sites to crash.

What makes botnets exceedingly bad is the difficulty in tracing them back to their creators as well as the ever-increasing use of them in extortion schemes. How are they used in extortion schemes?

Imagine someone sending you messages to either pay up or see your web site crash. This scenario is starting to replay itself over and over again.
Botnets can consist of thousands of compromised machines. With such a large network, botnets can use Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) as a method to cause mayhem and chaos. For example a small botnet with only 500 bots can bring corporate web sites to there knees by using the combined bandwidth of all the computers to overwhelm corporate systems and thereby cause the web site to appear offline.

Symantec Security  "NORTON" Response, "Botnets shrinking in size, harder to trace", extortion schemes have emerged backed by the muscle of botnets, and hackers are also renting the use of armadas of computers for illegal purposes through advertisements on the Web.

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Little Known Fact About the Internet Marketing Industry

Have you see or heard the explosion when Internet Marketing was born? The home-based business and internet marketing world have exploded onto the cyber scene.

Most entrepreneurs and business associates alike have become quite familiar with all of the benefits and disadvantages of the internet marketing realm. However, many have yet to discover the unknown marketing mysteries hidden deep within the World Wide Web.
Contrary to popular belief, web businesses are very inexpensive to start. The internet marketing aspect of the venture is also extremely low-cost.

An average home business creation can cost a few thousand dollars at the very least to begin. And this does not even cover the promotion and advertising. You can start accumulating money through a web enterprise by simply joining and participating in the numerous free affiliate programs scattered across the net. Marketing through this avenue is normally free, or offered at a reasonable price.

Did you know that owning and operating a home business entitles you to tax cuts? Now there is a little known fact that many will find interesting! Taxes breaks are offered for a variety of home business costs including: travel costs, phone bills, legal services, professional expenses, and even office supplies. Better yet, internet marketing and advertising can also be written off as a business expenditure.

Developing and running a web-based business does not mean you have to create your own product or service. The internet is a huge place with tons of ideas, programs, and products that are already ready to sell. You can use these ready-made products to your advantage and distribute them through affiliate programs.
     
There are several web sites across the internet that offer products solely for this purpose. If you are not interested
in selling, you can also earn extra cash just by internet marketing for others.
     
One of the best things about operating a web-based business is that it is always open. Your business is making money for you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Everything that composes your site is also working. This means your promotion, advertising, and marketing are constantly on the go.
     
Operating an internet business gives you both the time and freedom to do as you please. As the owner, you have the ability to create this business at your own speed. You also have the opportunity to choose the times and days you work each week, and what you want to accomplish on these days.
     
This freedom and control are one reason that so many individuals have initially decided to create their own internet businesses. Join my private membership list and receive my email course in...
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