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e-Notes Vol. 3 No. 20

Vol. 3 No. 20  Apr 21, 2011

Warning: Followup


In the last issue of e-Notes there was a warning due to a recent security breach at Epsilon, a marketing and advertising company which sends over 40 billion emails per year on behalf of 2,500 clients.  Apparently the problem is still with us in yet a more devious form.  We are indebted to Lou Gerig for bringing our attention to a very important article by Kim Komando.  You are strongly urged to read this article below. There are more reports of problems here at Shell Point.  USE CARE WHEN YOU CLICK.  Lou has also provided a number of very important suggestions you should consider to maintain your computer.  (See Check List below.)  Practice safe computing!


Criminals are targeting people whose information was compromised in last month's Epsilon data breach. A malicious new site offers an "Epsilon Secure Connect Tool." It promises to tell you if your data was exposed. Instead, it installs a Trojan that steals more data. How can you protect yourself from the Epsilon attack?



Hansel and Gretel Check List for Computer Users


·        Be sure your anti-virus is current.  Manually check for updates at least monthly to be sure the automatic updater is working correctly.  Remember, you can only run one anti-virus on your computer to avoid conflicts between anti-virus programs.

·        While you can run more than one anti-spyware application on your computer, more is not necessarily better.  Pick one and stick with it.

·        Each month, after the 15th day of the month it is a good idea to check Windows Update/Microsoft Update manually.  The 15th will always be after Microsoft's Patch Tuesday, the second Tuesday of every month, when Microsoft releases its monthly round of fixes.  Many of these have to do with securing your Windows. If you are up to date Windows Update/Microsoft Update with tell you so.  If not, it will offer you updates and you should install them.

·        Every couple of months, or sooner, you should run a “deep” or “full” scan of your computer using your anti-virus.  If you are using Microsoft Security Essentials that one scan will also be checking for spyware at the same time.  In between times you can run or rely on the “quick” scans.

·        Your internet browser(s), such as Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome should be configured with an ad-blocker.  The ad-blocker may be effective in preventing a pop-up that entices you to click on a malicious link.  Such malicious links may give you a screen that says your computer is infected with a virus or other malware.   Resist the temptation.  Rely on your existing security suite.

·        Some writers have suggested that our greatest problem is the fear that we are not protected and that by adding one piece of “whatever” we will be “safer.”  The scams that you have been reading about depend upon this thinking and camouflage their sites to entice you to make a bad click of your mouse.


Russ Kraay


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