A lot of things have happened since my last column. The most notable, of course,
was Hurricane Katrina. My family and I were lucky during this disaster. Where we live in
a city in northeast Mississippi, the last of the hurricane passed over us as it
was dying down. It did little damage to our town and caused few power
Even though I frequently focus on browser vulnerabilities in this column, you
can still find vulnerabilities just about anywhere in Windows. They range from
installed software installed to hardware drivers to the operating system
itself. No matter how hard anyone tries, no computer system can be 100% safe and
secure. Anyone who tells you different is just not telling you the truth.
You probably thought — as I did — that Microsoft’s ill-fated version of
Java would never rear its ugly head again after MS settled with Sun Microsystems
over one year ago.
The headline above probably sounds like a broken record. I know I’ve said it
many times and written it probably even more.
announced plans for a new Internet Explorer version 7 back in
With the first beta due out
you might be thinking that IE will finally be secure enough for you to start
using it again.
Instant messaging programs are a popular way of communicating with your
friends and family over the Internet. These same programs have also become a
fast and easy way for hackers to spread viruses, worms, and Trojans that can
infect your computer.
Some hackers don’t break into computers for mere fun and recognition any more, they’re motivated profit. Somewhere along the line, the war for control of your
computer shifted from fame to fortune.
The Web is a highly graphical place. Web sites will do whatever they can
to catch your eye, and some will try to use that against you to do your computer
harm. In some cases, operating system features can be used against you
as well. The thing to remember is that just because something is slick and
flashy, doesn’t mean it’s secure.
In some of the various
communities I take part in, you’ll see a pattern among staunch Microsoft
supporters. They continue to categorize Mozilla’s Firefox browser as nothing more
than a "hobbyist toy" and adamantly
declare that it is just a "matter of time" before hackers start targeting
Firefox users as much as users of Internet Explorer.
beach movie that recently aired on CBS-TV, the Internet is infested with hacker "sharks"
that are constantly swimming around fishing for computer "food." Unlike
the real thing, these sharks swim with their fin deep underwater and it’s
hard to see them coming.