Computer News & Safety – Harry Waldron Rotating Header Image

October 13th, 2011:

Microsoft – Security Intelligence Report v11

Sunbelt Security offers an excellent synopsis of SIR v11 reflecting developments during the first half of 2011 

Microsoft – Security Intelligence Report v11

QUOTE: SIR volume 11 has a lot more findings, insights, and observations from the the first half of 2011. Below are just some facts and figures from the report that are worth noting for future reference and study. Below are just some facts and figures from the report that are worth noting for future reference and study:

  • More than 1/3 of malware detected (ab)use the AutoRun feature in Windows. These malware spread via removable drives and network drives.
  • Exploits that take advantage of flaws in Java, the OS itself, and HTML/JScript were most prevalent from Q3 of 2010 to Q2 of 2011. The volume of exploits targeting Adobe Flash increased by more 40 times compared to the volume seen in Q2 of this year.
  • Adobe Reader and Acrobat are the most affected software for document format exploits. No surprise here.
  • Windows XP SP3 (client) and Windows Server 2033 SP2 (server) are the OSs with the highest infection rates.
  • Adware, software that were deemed potentially unsafe, and Trojans are the most prevalent threats that were detected on systems. An example of this threat is FakeRean.
  • There was a 71.97 percent decrease of spam volume from July 2010 to June 2011 due to the takedowns of the Pushdo/Cutwail and Rustock botnets.
  • Phishers are now targeting social networks more than financial institutes.

The .PDF copy of SIR is available and can be downloaded here. If you’re interested in backtracking previous volumes, Microsoft has made them available in their library page

Microsoft – Security Intelligence Report Home

Apple iCloud – PC Magazine Review

PC Magazine offers a detailed evaluation of Apple’s new iCloud facility as noted below:

Apple iCloud – PC Magazine Review,2817,2394611,00.asp

QUOTE: The new iPhone 4S is grabbing most of the headlines this week, but a less concrete new offering from Apple may be just as momentous—iCloud.  The new Web-based service will not only replace the checkered MobileMe Web apps (well, most of them), but also add backup and other services for iPads, iPhones, iPod touches, and even Mac computers running OS X Lion.

Apple iCloud – Key Links

BlackBerry – Services fully restored after 3 day outage

Hardware issues created a world-wide system outage and these appear to have been successfully resolved

BlackBerry – Full Services restored after 3 day outage,2817,2394609,00.asp

QUOTE: Research in Motion co-founder Mike Lazaridis today apologized for the ongoing BlackBerry outage and said that the company has “restored full services.”  “Since launching BlackBerry in 1999, it’s been my goal to provide reliable, real-time communications around the world. We did not deliver on that goal this week, not even close,” Lazaridis said in a video message (below). “I apologize for the service outages this week. We’ve let many of you down.”

In that message, he also said service was “approaching normal,” but in a later conference call with reporters, Lazaridis said services have now been restored. He reiterated that the three-day outage was caused by a hardware failure that prompted a “ripple effect” in RIM’s systems. Getting things back up “took much longer than we had expected,” and RIM is now “taking immediate and aggressive steps” to prevent such an outage from ever happening again, he said.  During a Wednesday conference call, the company said the problems were not related to a hack.

Microsoft Security Updates – October 2011

Users should apply these changes expediently to ensure the best levels of protection

Microsoft Security Updates – October 2011

QUOTE: Eight security bulletins have been released to include patches for 23 vulnerabilities for software such as Microsoft .NET Framework, Microsoft Silverlight, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Forefront United Access Gateway, and Microsoft Host Integration Server.

Microsoft Technet overview