Monday, January 5, 2015

2015-01-05 WTKM Talking Points (January 5th 2015)

Warning: New CryptoWall ransomware variant; spread through advertising networks.
When you see advertisements on the internet your computer
already needs to be cleaned!

Is you Adobe software up-to-date? Per 2014-12-31 current versions are:
Reader 11.0.10
Flashplayer (for both IE and plugin versions)
Windows 8 will have to upgraded to 8.1 by Jan. 12, 2016 (See MS blog here>).

Still more malicious PowerPoint files. Be careful; no patch yet.

Adobe's Digital Editions 4 desktop ebook reader secretly sends encrypted data back to headquarters – data that details a user's reading habits.

To stay safe use: My “typical” customer uses:
Anti virus program     (MSE/Defender)
Secure DNS server     (router vs. computer & only if set up correctly)
Firewall                     (not with HIPS (Host Intrusion Prevention System)
Sandbox                      ???
EBKAC errors are the most common ones and no program protects against that!

Yearly maintenance suggestions:
  1. Backup the whole system as it is via image backup on an external disk drive
    - Vista: Backup data (evtl. free 3rd party program)
    - Wind 7/8 Excellent built-in backup tools (non-MS instructions Win7, Win8)
  2. Check physical HDD health (SMART, HD-Tune, PassMark DiskCheckup)
  3. Check logical HDD health (admin command prompt, chkdsk c: /f)
  4. Check for updates (MS sites for Vista /Win7, Win8)
    - Operating system and all Microsoft software
    - ALL regularly used programs (web browser, mail program, PDF reader, Adobe Flash, - Shockwave, - Air, Java, office software, games, media player a.s.o.)
  5. Check ALL your passwords (read this article!)
    - Use password software (Roboform, KeePass, LastPass)
  6. Verify your system is clean (ESET online scanner, Malwarebytes & my instructions)
  7. If you have a wireless router make sure that WPS is turned off! (background)
  8. Really clean out debris files most thoroughly (see these instructions)
  9. Defragment the HDD (Win8: "Optimize";  Vista/Win7Win8)
A big Thank You 
to WTKM listeners,
to all my customers,
for having me on the air!
HAPPY NEW YEAR to everybody!

As usual I welcome suggestions and comments right here in the blog.

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