I Am Not Paranoid!

Believing the Web and email are both secure and private requires a willing suspension of disbelief.

So read this story and take a lesson for living:

The Softer Side of Spyware from Sears, Kmart

Googins noted on his company’s blog that the spyware installed by Sears transmitted everything from banking logins, email, and all other forms of Internet usage to comScore for analysis all in the name of ‘community’ participation. This was done without notice, an act contrary to documentation about the community from Sears saying that any data collected would stay within Sears’ hands at all times.

I’ve been trying to tell people that they shouldn’t assume privacy and security online. Not even in “private” and “personal” email.

But I think most of them think I’m being old-fashioned. Or hypersensitive. Or paranoid.

No. I’m. Not.


Now, say it with me…all together now…

Mark is not paranoid!

Thank you.

McAfee Warns . . . .

I’m bumping this up to current date and time to let you know that you can get some protection software free (after rebate and excluding shipping, of course) at Frys.

Original Post — December 05, 2007 @ 06:40 follows:

If you’re reading this, it applies to you.

Especially if you’re on your own computer.

So be warned and take this seriously.

McAfee Warns of Impending ‘Cyber Cold War’

Some analysts now fear that the world is about to be crushed within the icy grasp of a “cyber cold war”.

The frightening concept comes after prominent security company McAfee released their annual report last week. According to the new study, over 120 countries are now engaged in developing tools for using the web as a weapon, targeting home and corporate users, their bank accounts, stocks, and even the computer systems of their governments.

There’s little doubt that the report is meant to be a wake-up call.

Make sure your computer and your ISP are well firewalled. And anti-virused and anti-spammed. And so forth.

Maybe this software is what you need: McAfee VirusScan Plus 2008 with SiteAdvisor by McAfee

Or this hardware: D-Link DSD-150 SecureSpot Internet Security Adapter

Or this software: Kaspersky Internet Security 7.0 3-user

Or this software: Norton 360 All-In-One Security Annual Subscription – 3 PCs

Corrupting the Car

First, “they” made the phone more than something on which to talk with someone else.

Or did “they” start messing with the automobile first?

So, in the Why Can’t a Vehicle Just Take Us from Here to There and Back? department:

An onboard computer that allows passengers to surf the Internet and download music while you drive? A built-in barbecue that folds out of the trunk for tailgate parties?

SEMA 07, the world’s biggest auto accessories exhibition taking place in Las Vegas this week, has shown that the only limit on vehicle-owners wanting to customise their four-wheeled friends appears to be their imagination.

To which I exclaim, “Please, spare us!”

But no . . . .

If Bryan Davis, president of Led Wheels has his way, pedestrians and fellow motorists will soon be able to watch televisions mounted inside the wheel rims of other cars driving by.

Hey, get a life!

And help somebody else get a life. And maybe keep someone else from losing a life. Do motorists need more Fatal Attractions?

Besides, people won’t get away from red lights as quickly because they’re no longer looking at the semaphore, they’re looking at the other person’s WheeRimTV. Or else those contraptions will cause an epidemic of street racing as the viewer engages RocketStart in an effort to catch up to that TV.

But how about this next “jewel” — is it more practical?

A pick-up truck on show featured a giant flat-screen television folding out from the trunk as well as a built-in barbecue grill, emblazoned with the logo of the National Football League.

Sure. But this next one is something I’ve rooted for since I was a teenager (thirty-plus years ago already!).

Other gadgets on show offered a new twist on conventional in-car equipment, most notably an electronic rear-view mirror linked to a camera which offers drivers a panoramic view of the road behind them.

Now there’s something useful. I could really dominate a game of RubberNeck with a mirror like that!

And this “baby” could be so useful (possibly) when squealing away from the traffic light in an effort to see the last of the commercial on that guy’s WheeRimTV:

Among accessories being shown by The Hoffman Group was a device that enables cars to shoot a two-meter flame from the rear exhaust.

Think metric!

Beware of Emailed PDFs

Update now!

Just this week Adobe patched a major problem with its Acrobat and Reader programs. The issue? Flaws that could allow malicious exploits. Now, it seems hackers are using the precious time between update release and update download to unleash a flood of malicious code.

According to Symantec Corporation, the exploits are still alive and well for the bulk of users yet to update.

This next excerpt is good advice all the time, but especially if you haven’t upgraded:

Symantec warns everyone to avoid YOUR_BILL.pdf and INVOICE.pdf especially, but to also be wary of just about any PDF file arriving via email. Even if your electronic mail program doesn’t identify the file or sender as spammy, making sure you’re well acquainted with the sender (and they like you).

No, I haven’t upgraded yet. I just read the article several minutes ago. And I’m on a dial-up connection of 31.2 Kbps.

Above all, love God!