Posts Tagged ‘security’

Free Mac Antivirus Software – Take Precautions

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

I have been using long before it became popular. That lack of popularity meant that virus author saw little value in writing for the Mac platform. Once, several years ago during the spyware epidemic, a work colleague of mine mentioned that he was switching to the Mac platform because he was sick of viruses and spyware. At that moment I knew it wouldn’t be long before Mac were a target of malware authors.

Now that the market share for Macs has risen the platform is more likely to be under attack — which was foreseeable. Don’t forget to take precautions and install antivirus software. The security firm Sophos provides free Mac antivirus software.

Download 1st-Ever Digital Safety App for Your Smartphone

Monday, January 31st, 2011

GetNetWise is proud to contribute content to the “First-Ever Online Safety & Security Education App Available on Smartphone Platform.” It was developed by GNW’s parent, Internet Education Foundation, along with Google and Verizon and the content is contributed by three of the other premier online safety education organizations in the world — Common Sense Media,, This innovative app makes it easy for consumers and families to keep up with mobile and online privacy, safety, and security issues using their Android smartphone or tablet.

If you have an Android phone or tablet download the App from the Market by searching for “Net Safety Tips.” Visit for more information. The press release is here.

Seen a friend’s email hijacked? Don’t let it happen to you.

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

Spammers and identity thieves have committed a rash of email hijacks lately. Maybe you’ve seen a friend’s email account hacked, sending out unwanted spam. These new email account hijacks are a disturbing twist on an old hack. In most cases users’ email accounts are taken over and used to send out spam. In a new twist identity thieves are using the email accounts to steal passwords and your identity and access online accounts such as Amazon, banks, etc. Often these ID thefts result in the deletion of your email account. Don’t let this happen to you.

K.C. Budd wrote a great set of tips about preventing email account hijacking and posted it on his Facebook page. Don’t be a victim.

Keeping Your Web-based Email Safe and Secure

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Many of us use Web-based email services like Hotmail, Gmail and Yahoo for personal communications. Many of my most personal and secret conversations are stored in my Web email account. It’s horrifying to think that my email life is a password away from anyone anywhere to access. Most importantly, use passwords that are hard to guess but easy to remember! That said, recently we have seem some pretty clever practices by Web mail companies to make those communications more private and more secure.

Now Hotmail allows users of their Web mail to provide a mobile phone number so that Hotmail can text a password reset code in case you forgot. This is probably more secure than having secret security questions that can be guessed by others. Hotmail also allows users to register “trusted” computers that are recognized by the email service. See this great CNet blog on the subject.

Recently Google’s Gmail has implement a similar mobile phone text reset mechanism. And it also provides a handy tool to find out whether anyone other than you has accessed your Gmail account.The “Last account activity” shows you what what type of device accessed your Gmail (e.g. Browser, Mobile), the IP addresses of the device and when it was accessed. For instance, if the “Last account activity” report says your Gmail was accessed by a mobile device yesterday and you don’t access Gmail on mobile, you may have a problem.  Gmail also alerts you to suspicious behavior on your account. Here is a more thorough blog post on the subject.

All I can say is, Way to go Hotmail and Gmail.

Password Protect Your Apple Mac OSX

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

With market share for Apple Macs climbing we get more and more questions about privacy and security settings for the Mac. A reporter recently asked how to password protect a Mac OSX computer. Click the start button below for a quick video tutorial (with audio) on password protecting your Mac. Follow the tutorial to password protect the computer. It also shows you how to have password access kick in after the machine goes to sleep or after the screen saver kicks in. Last night Erik Kennedy blogged “Mac users need to think about security, too” on ars technica with some great tips as well. If you have a Windows XP machine, we have a tutorial for you here.

Here are the text instructions:

  • 1. Pull down the Apple Icon in the top left corner of the screen.
  • 2. Select the System Preferences menu item.
  • 3. After the window opens, select the Security button.
  • 4. Check the box next to Require password to wake this computer from sleep or screensaver.
  • 5. Next, below the heading For all accounts on this computer: check the box next to Disable automatic login.
  • 6. Also, for good measure, check the box next to Require password to unlock each secure system preference.
  • 7. Don’t forget to lock the padlock to prevent changes.
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