Tech savvy users know that it's not necessary to pay for antivirus protection. The question is, how reliable is Microsoft's own Security Essentials software? In our own tests, Security Essentials has performed fairly well in terms of protection, though its slow scan speed and limited feature-set don't put it at the front of the pack when compared with other free (and paid) AV solutions. What's confusing, however, is Microsoft's own opinion on the matter.
If you're in the business of offering free antivirus protection, beware of hackers mucking up your website. The Palestinian hacker group known as KDSM Team recently targeted several well known companies, including AVG and Avira, makers of popular free (and paid) security solutions, and defaced their homepages (sort of). Whatsapp, a cross-platform messaging app for mobile devices, was also tagged.
Professional networking site LinkedIn recently found itself the recipient of a class action lawsuit alleging that the company has been hacking into its users' email accounts and downloading their contacts, which it would then use to send out marketing materials. Furthermore, the lawsuit alleges that LinkedIn essentially impersonates its users. Blake Lawit, Senior Director of Litigation at LinkedIn, denied the accusations in a blog post.
IE flaw could allow hackers to wreak havoc remotely
Be advised that if you're running Internet Explorer version 8 or 9, you could be a sitting duck for a remote code execution attack. Microsoft is aware of the zero day flaw and has issued an emergency Band-Aid as a temporary fix as it continues to investigate the issue. Applying Microsoft's "CVE-2013-3893 MSHTML Shim Workaround" prevents attackers from being able to exploit the security flaw until a permanent fix is rolled out.
One of the wonders of the human body is that it heals itself. The damage might be self-inflicted, like an accidental fall, or it could be caused by an attacker. Either way, the human body is tremendously adept at repairing cuts, scrapes, bruises, and other ailments. HP is taking that same concept and applying it to the PC's Basic Input/Output System, otherwise known as the BIOS.
Microsoft is planning to cut off support for Windows XP in April 2014, just a few months shy of the legacy operating system's 13th birthday. Many computers have long moved on from Windows XP and are now rocking Windows 7 or Windows 8 (or even Vista), though it's estimated that between 20 percent (StatCounter) and 33 percent (NetMarketShare) of PCs around the world haven't yet upgraded. What happens to all those users come April?
For malware writers, everything's a numbers a game. So, the more popular a platform becomes, the more attention cybercriminals will pay to finding vulnerabilities they can exploit. It's really no wonder, then, that McAfee's Threat Report for the second quarter of 2013 noted a rebound in mobile threats, including a 35 percent growth rate in Android-based malware, the likes of which have not been seen since early 2012, the security firm reports.
Syrian Electronic Army continues its hacking rampage
The latest news outlet to fall victim to hack attacks by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) is The Washington Post, which earlier today posted a short message confirming a security breach that redirected readers of certain stories to the SEA's website. The Washington Post didn't say which specific stories were affected by the breach, adding that it's working to resolve the issue. Since then, more information has been made available.
AVG Technologies was in need of a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Gary Kovacs, the former chief of Mozilla, needed a job after having stepped down from his previous role several months ago. Like a cheesy corporate love story, the two have found each other and will ride off into the sunset hand-in-hand, or something like that. Hollywood shenanigans aside, Kovacs will bring his more than two decades of Mozilla experience to one of the more popular free security vendors on the market.
Apple recently pulled the plug on its developer portal after an "intruder attempted to secure personal information" from the site, the Cupertino company indicated in an email and in a message on its website. The company went on to say that while sensitive information was encrypted and cannot be accessed, it couldn't rule out the possibility that some developers' names, mailing addresses, and/or email addresses may have been accessed, and indeed they were.