Computer News & Safety – Harry Waldron Rotating Header Image

January 22nd, 2018:

Leadership – How to Bridge the Generation Gap in 2018

The John Maxwell leadership training center shares an excellent article in looking ahead to challenges of 2018.  It focuses on older leaders can bridge the generation gap to foster an improved spirit of teamwork in their diverse organizations.

1.Invest in professional growth – Investing portions of your human capital training budget into interactive, onsite workshops is a great place to start

2.Capitalize on the social affinity of millennials – Millennials thrive in social settings and like to network electronically worldwide. Harness this skill and assist them in building their professional relationships and leaping over the generation gap in the workplace.

3.Encourage people to be creative – Let employees know that their input is valued. Micro-management is the barrier to innovation. Communicate the mission and values of a project, and then take a step back.

4.Listen – Communication is about the sharing of information; it is not about talking at someone. Millennials are interested in contributing, building and being a part of something that matters. When employees feel comfortable sharing their own ideas, their goals develop real meaning.

5.Don’t forget your sense of humor – Humor is disarming, and is critical for team-building. When a team laughs together it helps to facilitate a sense of community and enhances a cohesive corporate culture.

6. Make younger employees feel welcome – Bridging the generation gap in the workplace is in essence about belonging, feeling valued and having confidence that your voice is being heard – no matter our defined generational identity

Malware – Necurs top spam and ransomware botnet after 5 years

Talos Security shares a research report on the Necurs botnet family, which has been in circulation for over 5 years

Over the past five years the Necurs botnet has established itself as the largest purveyor of spam worldwide. Necurs is responsible for emailing massive amounts of banking malware, ransomware, dating spam, pump-n-dump stock scams, work from home schemes, and even cryptocurrency wallet credential phishing. Necurs sends so much spam that at times Necurs’ spam campaigns can make up more than 90% of all spam seen by Cisco Talos in one day.

Typically email campaigns from Necurs fall into one of two categories: high-volume weekday campaigns, or low volume continuous campaigns. Necurs has occasionally been seen sending high volume campaigns on weekends, but the vast majority of the time high volume campaigns are limited to the business week only. The mailing list database Necurs is using seems to be segmented, such that the high volume campaigns use one subset of email addresses from the DB, and the low volume campaigns use a different set of email addresses.

Of course one of Necurs’ most well-known payloads is ransomware. Necurs has been one of the biggest distributors of the Locky ransomware. Locky also works on an affiliate model. Inside of each locky sample, in the metadata, is an affiliate ID, which is always the same for Necurs mailings. Most of the time, very little investment is made in the design of the messages themselves, as in the following example.

Now that Necurs is back from their regular holiday break they are attempting to fill our inboxes with junk mail and malware once again. On one hand, the size of the Necurs botnet, and its ability to send from different nodes in every campaign makes it difficult to defend against; Standard IP address blacklists are ineffective against such tactics. Fortunately for network defenders, the fact that Necurs does relatively little to curate their recipient database limits the damage they can do. There are only so many times the same recipients will fall for Necurs’ same, repetitive tricks. We can expect that Necurs will continue to try variations on some of their tried and true attacks, and so user education against these threats remains paramount.

Java programming language – 2018 predictions

An IBM research report shares continued popularity and predictions for the Java programming language in 2018:

There may be no more pervasive computer code anywhere in the world than Java, created by Dr. James Gosling and his team at Sun Microsystems in the early 1990s and released in 1995 as a core component of Sun’s Java Platform.

Java is a general-purpose computer programming language that is concurrent, class-based, object-oriented and specifically designed to have as few implementation dependencies as possible. This is why it has not been passed by despite so many advancements in IT during the 23 years it has been a major factor in the IT world.  It’s everywhere–in virtually every mobile device, server, IT system and network. Java applications are typically compiled to bytecode that can run on any Java virtual machine (JVM) regardless of computer architecture.

1.Will remain one of most Popular Languages in the World
2.2018 will be the year of Eclipse Foundation
3.Java convergence with containers will become more common & seamless
4.Kotlin will become the next hot language with Java Interoperability
5.New 6 month release model will drive faster innovation
6.Serverless platforms will begin a major reshaping of Java

Word Press – Steps in building your own website JAN-2018

Word Press provides a robust environment for website development as shared in this informative PC Magazine article:

WordPress is the free content management system (CMS) that powers everything from your favorite anime fan site to CNN’s online presence. In fact,, the website that houses the open-source software, states that WordPress powers 29 percent of the sites on the World Wide Web.

WordPress is a remarkably flexible content management system that has many themes and plug-ins to enhance the front-end and back-end experiences. There’s no coding required, unless you want a truly customized website feature or layout. As a result, building a WordPress-powered website isn’t particularly difficult. Still, people who aren’t familiar with the process may need a guiding hand.

BASIC STEPS for creating your own website

1.Pick a URL name and ISP provider
2.Find a Theme
3.Pick Your Plug-Ins
4.Protect Your Admin access & prevent spam posters
5.Optimize and Manage WordPress Hosting