Computer News & Safety – Harry Waldron Rotating Header Image

July 9th, 2012:

Physical Security – Lost devices in airports

This article notes caution when traveling to not misplace or forget equipment. While there are expenses associated with lost items, the information contained on them could compromise corporate security controls.

Over 8,000 Laptops, Smartphones, Tablets, USB Drives Lost in Airports

QUOTE: Traveling this summer? Know where your mobile device is at all times, Credant Technology advises.  Travelers left their wireless devices behind at “alarming rates” across the seven airports included in a recent airport survey—Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, Miami, Orlando, Minneapolis-St. Paul, and Charlotte— according to the second annual report from Credant Technologies. Researchers found 8,016 total lost devices in major airports, and security checkpoints were the most common place to misplace mobile devices, according to the report. Restrooms was another common area.

Of the devices misplaced in the airport, 43 percent were laptops and 45 percent were smartphones and tablets, according to the report. The remaining 12 percent were USB drives. Just a little half, or 52 percent, of the devices are returned to their owners, Credant said. If they are not claimed, airports overwhelmingly donated them to charity or sold them at public auctions.

Facebook – New Multiple Accounts Warning

As documented by Facecrooks security, Facebook is warning users with possible multiple accounts in advance.  Controls could be more rigidly enforced in the future.

Facebook – New Multiple Accounts Warning

QUOTE: Several Facebook users have reported receiving the following warning message from Facebook.

“It looks like you have more than one account on Facebook. Facebook is a community where people use their real identities so you always know who you’re connecting with. Maintaining multiple accounts is a violation of our Terms and could result in all of your accounts being disabled. Please remove this account and help us keep Facebook safe and enjoyable for everyone.”

This warning has been causing quite a stir today! Many users are worried that they will be losing their accounts, and many stated that they don’t have multiple accounts at all. It seemed rather odd that so many were receiving this message all of a sudden, so we reached out to Facebook to see if we could get an explanation.   We received the following message from Facebook a short while ago explaining what is going on:

“We are currently testing a system that warns users who have opened multiple accounts, we are not taking any action on these users for the time being so there’s no need for anyone to worry. We are iterating on this system to be more accurate and are only notifying possible violators.”

Windows 8 – October 2012 Release Announcement

Microsoft has targeted availability of Windows 8 for the end of October as noted below:

Windows 8 – October 2012 Release Announcement

QUOTE: Speaking at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partners’ Conference in Toronto, Tami Reller, the CFO of Windows and Windows Live, said that consumers can get their hands on the product by the end of October. The software, she explained, will release to manufacturers (RTM) during the first week of August. Microsoft is busily adding flesh to the bones of its Windows 8 strategy. Last week, the software giant confirmed that it will cost users just $39.99 for Windows 8 Pro if they upgrade from a previous version of Windows.

Windows 8 Team Blog – October 2012 Release

DNSChanger Internet Client Shutdown – Most users will not be impacted

The media is sharing a need for users to ensure their computers are not infected with the DNSChanger malware agent.  However, this has been overly sensationalized and exaggerated, and some folks are panicking.  The FBI will be turning off Internet services for computers infected by the DNSChanger malware which impacts a very small percentage of total Internet users.  The ISC publishes an excellent and realistic write-up on this scope of possible infections.

DNSChanger Internet Client Shutdown – Most users will not be impacted

QUOTE: This new item led to a flood of news reports, which IMHO blow the entire affair out of proportion (the headline to this diary entry pretty much reflects a discussion I had today with a non technical person responding to one of these articles).  In short: Don’t worry. There are estimates of 250,000 infected systems based on data from the DNS changer working group. There are about 2,000,000,000 internet users. So about 0.01% of internet users are infected. In other words: Very few. People who have disregarded warning banners, phone calls from ISPs, AV warnings, and other notification attempts. They probably should be disconnected from the Internet.  Lastly: Tell people to go to (short for DNS Changer Working It has a little test to tell you if you are affected or not. It also got a lot of first hand information about this malware.