Tag Archives: encrypt

We Haven't Forgotten Windows 7

There should be an image here!Last week, we posted an offer to our readers about a security encryption program, SafeBit. There was a forty percent reduction to their usual price for the people who frequent these pages. Our write-up can be found here.

Because of very bad timing and the issue with coordinating over many different time zones, we learned too late that the program does work with Windows 7. The memo states: “it is compatible with the 32 bit version of Windows 7.”

The good news is that the SafeBit people are extending their generous offer until April 25th, 2010. Now there is no reason for our Windows 7 people to miss out on this offer. Thanks to the people at SafeBit for all their effort and for looking out for the Windows 7 users.

Layers of Computer Protection

Computer security people advocate layers of protection. There is no single software program that gives absolute protection. The Internet criminals and hackers simply respond too quickly, and are too sophisticated to be stopped by any one method.

One of the layers of protection that people seem to neglect is encryption. There seems to be a common misconception that encryption is something that is complicated and geeky. It really is not. It can be easy, and it offers an additional layer of security.

The crime of Identity Theft is growing. Two essential pieces of information necessary is to match your name to your social security number. It can lead to a host of problems financially. And if the Identity Theft is used for medical services, it can lead to deadly consequences. This is just a reality of the Internet – and a danger – as more and more medical services move to electronic record keeping for health providers. The key is simply preparation.

For your safety and security, SafeBit offers easy encryption:

SafeBit Disk Encryption is the perfect electronic vault you need for your privacy. It features military strength on-the-fly encryption, by creating virtual disk drives, where you can hide files and folders, keep them encrypted all them time, but still work with these files just like you work with normal files. SafeBit is the last line of defense if your current security system fails against viruses, trojans or hacker attacks.

This is a very special offer for our readers. The SafeBit people are offering our readers a generous forty percent (40%) discount off their regular price. This is a remarkable saving on an award winning software program.

This offer expires on January 6, 2010.

Here is just one last reminder for the people on laptops. If you are using different wi-fi connections regularly or plugging in to unfamiliar Internet connections, there is the risk of keyloggers. For example, the keylogger would record your name and password when you enter a site like PayPal. That would be comparable to handing over the log-in data to your online account. SafeBit has a virtual keyboard. It will give protection against such keylogger programs, and password-stealing malware. This is terrific for travelers, or for those people who are on the go with their laptops and netbooks. The virtual keyboard feature alone is worth the generous price of this program.

Thanks to the SafeBit people for offering this program to our readers at this price point.

Protecting Your Privacy and Security

Cisco Systems uses this program. The Drug Enforcement Administration (USA) uses this program. The Exchange Bank uses this program. McCain Foods Limited uses this program. What program is it? It is Invisible Secrets, and the client list is impressive. Privacy and security are important to these companies and institutions – it is essential to computer protection. This is a preventative measure that individual computer users have to recognize because there is so much information on just one hard drive.

Not only is identity theft rampant, but there are things on the your home computer, work machine, or laptop that are simply private. You not only want protection from outside hackers, you want to safeguard against nosy friends, colleagues and family members.

Invisible Secrets 4 not only encrypts your data and files for safe keeping or for secure transfer across the Internet, it also hides them in places that on the surface appear totally innocent — such as picture or sound files or Web pages. These types of files are a perfect disguise for sensitive information. Using our file encryption software nobody — not even your wife, boss, or a hacker — would realize that your important papers or letters are stored in your last holiday pictures, or that you use your personal Web page to exchange messages or secret documents. With Invisible Secrets 4 file encryption software, you may encrypt and hide files directly from Windows Explorer and then automatically transfer them by email or via the Internet.

We have Invisible Secrets 4 available to our readers at a 40% discount.

Invisible Secrets works on Windows NT / 2000 / XP and Vista. This offer ends June 18th, 2009.

Here’s a question: Why isn’t this program standard on every laptop? With business laptops, government laptops, and personal laptops going missing every day, this security program should be on every portable machine, as well as desktop. This would be an enormous security step in the right direction for dealing with sensitive information that is breached and it would completely bypass the subsequent nightmare of paying for identity theft protection. It’s simple and it’s effective.

If you need large multiples of this program, please let us know. We will try to negotiate a good price for those companies that may need many copies for laptops holding those confidential files. For the individual user, think of the files, emails, pictures, passwords, and other bits of information that you don’t want people to access. That is exactly why we went after this privacy/security program for our readers… and our thanks to the Invisible Secrets people for this generous offer.

How to Secure Your Wireless Network

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One community member wrote: “After years of mistrust about wireless networks and creative use of Ethernet cabling I have now adopted a wireless network in my home for a laptop to access anywhere in the house. I have over the past week, done a lot of research and have some tips the community might want to consider in relation to the setup and/or use of wireless networks.”

Here are actually TWO Top 5 lists for helping make your wireless network more secure!

  • Am I secured? If you haven’t set up security passwords yourself then it’s not likely that you will be secured. To find out, simply go to ‘My Network Places’ on your PC and scan for your wireless network. In the list that appears, there should be a picture of a padlock next to the name of your network. If there is no padlock, then you need some security.
  • Use WPA. Most new routers now offer WiFi Protected Access (WPA) passwords as well as Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP). WPA offers increased security, and if your computer and other hardware is compatible, you should always use WPA as it is far harder to hack into than previous encryption methods.
  • Added security. You should also always have comprehensive anti-virus software such as Norton or McAfee installed on your computer to protect you from viruses that can open your PC up to hackers. Make sure that these are always kept up to date by regularly checking for updates on the provider’s website. You should also use a firewall – many routers have one built-in but you should run one on your PC too.
  • Isolate your wireless signal. Wireless isolation works to make your signal invisible to anyone searching for WiFi in your area. Wireless Broadband UK is built-in to some routers but must be physically enabled by the user – so check your router’s manual for Wireless Broadband tips on how to do this.
  • Use an access list. If you’re still worried, you can create an access list. All computers have their own Media Access Control (MAC) address – a way of identifying each individual computer – and you can tell your router which MAC addresses it can allow access to; blocking all others. This means that anyone wanting to use your wireless signal would not only have to have your password but would have to be on the access list too.
  • Encrypt it! The first and most important consideration if you are thinking of running a wireless network is to make sure that you have not left the network totally unsecured, I say totally unsecured as no network is ever 100% secure and this is especially the case with wireless networks as they allow easier access for potential unsavory characters to get in. An unencrypted wireless connection can allow anyone within the range of your wireless signal to immediately connect to it and start using your Internet connection for personal and/or criminal purposes and also access any files you may have shared on the hard drives of the machines connected on the network.

    There are many guides available on securing your wireless network available on the Internet and your router’s manual should also provide a guide in doing so. A lot of the terminology and setup options may at first seem very technical to you but the couple of hours of research/setup is valuable time to spend where your privacy is concerned.
  • Be aware what you share, Most people using a wireless network or any network for that matter usually want to share files between computers on the network. Make sure you do not share any files in these shared areas which are in any way confidential or important enough that you would not want anyone to potentially see them. For example you might want to share some mp3s on a computer to listen to on another computer in your house which is fine, however sharing say a document with your bank details etc on is a definite no no.

    If totally unsecured, anyone within range of your wireless network can access any of these files without you noticing. Securing your wireless network will 99.9% of the time stop this intrusion but as mentioned no wireless network is 100% secure so just avoid sharing important files.

  • Be aware of public hot spots. There are many wireless hot spots in coffee shops or in general, wireless is everywhere! and where there is an abundance of something there are usually some individuals lurking about ready to exploit it. If you are thinking of or do use these wireless hot spots there are some things to remember. Turn off your shared files, even if they are only mp3s, it is still wise to make sure they cannot access your hard drive.

    Make sure any sites where you enter login details are secure. This can normally be determined with ‘https’ in the URI in the address bar or the padlock symbol in the bottom right of your browser window. This is because computers sharing the same network as you can (with the right software) see exactly what you are sending or receiving over that network unless that information is encrypted. This also means that it is possible for someone to snoop in on what websites you are visiting or the email you are sending (be aware that most secure sites merely secure the login details you enter, after that everything is visible on the network) so it is advisable to be a bit conservative on what you do on the Internet in these places. It is certainly a wise idea to wait until you get home to check your bank balance online or make an online purchase.

  • Keep your computer up to date and behind a firewall. Making sure you have your computer’s operating system up to date, a virus program installed and a firewall initiated on your machine should be something you have implemented anyway. However with the increased security risk a wireless network can expose you to, these things are totally essential in keeping you safe and secure. It is also the case I have found that users will often keep their main desktop computer up to date but neglect a laptop that they do not use as often. These laptops are likely the candidate machine that the user will be using to access a wireless network.
  • Turn it off. Simple yet most effective tip. If you are a moderate user simply turn your router/wifi off when you are not using it or schedule the wireless connection to only be off at times you know you will not be using it. If it is off then your wireless network is 100% safe.

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Privacy

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In this day and age, you can’t be too careful with your personal information. We all know I’m not a private person in any way, but I do value your privacy and want to help keep you safe. Here are some excellent tips that Josh sent in, to help your data and identity stay secure.

  • Don’t shop online or check your email on public computers, or when using unencrypted wireless networks. If you do have to do these things, be sure you log out and clear any cookies and login information you possibly can. Also, try using After Work on a U3 Flash Drive if possible. After Work erase online and offline history: Temporary Internet Files, IE history, typed urls, opened documents, started programs, temporary registry values.
  • Only visit trusted sites for downloads. For example, if you need to download drivers for hardware, check the manufacturer’s website first. Don’t rely on a Google search. You may end up entering personal information to get your download, or even paying for things that should be free.
  • Keep your passwords long and difficult. You more than ten characters, add punctuation where allowed, add a mixture of letters and numbers, and mix up your capitalization with lowercase letters. There are a couple of excellent password managing tools out there, including the open-source KeePass, and RoboForm. The simple version of RoboForm is free. However, if you’d like a paid version, I can save you 20% if you ask nicely.
  • Create a password for your BIOS. This will make it impossible for anyone to get onto your computer without the password. This is a password that must be entered before the OS even loads. Also, change your Windows password often, to prevent anyone from figuring it out.
  • Encrypt your data. TrueCrypt is open-source (FREE!) software that will encrypt your data as it is entered.
  • Two bonus tips: Make use of hidden files and folders, and keep the option to view them turned OFF. Also, change file extensions whenever possible.

These are excellent privacy tips, Josh. For everyone else, what other privacy tips do you have that you want to pass along to the rest of the world? Leave them for me in a comment to this video, or email them to me at [email protected]

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