Ten Myths of “Safe” Web Browsing

A sense is growing that defenses have gotten stiffer and bad guys are too busy phishing for suckers on Twitter, so what’s the worry? It actually gets more dangerous online every day. That’s the reality.

1. The enemy is kids. The enemy comes in all ages and most of them are in it to make money. A proof was the late September round-up of around 100 hackers in the U.S., UK, and the Ukraine. The ring bilked businesses of up to $100 million using the Zeus Trojan (a slick key logger). Thrill seeking hackers are out there, but the real danger is the mounting number of for-profit criminals who are intent on looting your money or identity.

2. Updated anti-virus software will keep computers safe. It neutralizes at best 25 to 50 percent of threats… Meaning it misses 50% or more.

3. Apple computers are safe. Lack of a large Mac market share is why they have been ignored. If Apple sells more computers, hacker interest will necessarily rise because they follow the money.

4. Some websites are trustworthy. Security experts pinpoint this as perhaps the prime problem of the moment. Threats increasingly have shifted out of email and onto “trusted” websites. Facebook frequently is cited. Because users’ guards are down their vulnerability rises and if they are using the corporate network, hold on, troubles are brewing.

5. Gaming consoles are safe. Problems are acute with Xbox 360s, but other devices also pose risks.

6. Unmanaged smartphones represent minor risks. Don’t believe it, as the phones get smarter, with more memory and more processing power, users are indeed browsing with them.

7. Outside hackers are your prime threat. Data has shown 48 percent of all security incidents involve insiders.

8. Strong passwords are a cure. A strong password is just as phishable or keyloggable as a weak one, and if the one strong password applies to many of your accounts, you might find that more than just your Facebook account has been hijacked.

9. Tablets are inconsequential security risks. Apple alone has sold some 3.3 million iPads and BlackBerry, Samsung and more are piling on this form factor. As more users begin to use this devices the hackers will seek them out.

10. Just learn what to look for. The biggest myth of safe web browsing is the myth of training. Some threats are so sophisticated and so camouflaged that they now often fool even sophisticated computer users.

adapted via cioupdate.com

  • 11/01/2010
  • IT