Help protect your system with HostsFile.org

I have three little kids (6, 4 and 2 years) and they’re becoming very tech savvy. Two have Nintentdo DS’s and they all play the original XBOX, the XBOX 360 and the Wii. They are also eager internet users and although I can filter the games and activities on the game consoles quite easily, keeping control of the wild nature of the net is a far more difficult task. I therefore need to have a few tools in my arsenal to keep my kids innocence in tact and ensure that they’re only leaning how to cook master chef style and enjoying some time with Jay and Justine on Play School. That’s where HostsFile.org comes in.

So you think your computer is secure? Think again! Let us tell you why it is not.

The Internet is full of places you don’t want your computer wandering into. Sites that install spyware, adware, viruses, mass-mailers, and worse. Many of these bad sites are well-known to Internet security researchers. Nothing on your computer should be allowed to connect to these known bad sites. Other sites are more of an annoyance. These are sites that slow your web browser down with advertisements or try to track everywhere you go on the web. Then there are hate, gambling, pornography and other “adult” sites. You might think these types of sites are fine if you’re an adult, but these sites are often used as launching platforms for programs that are aimed at taking control of your computer.

Unfortunately, your computer will go anywhere it’s told. Every time you do an innocent web search, you risk going to a new web page that will tell your computer to go to a half-dozen other web sites to get images, scripts, style sheets, cookies, movies, or controls. Maybe the site you originally went to is okay, but what about the other half-dozen your computer just went to without your knowledge?

You need a leash for your computer! Your existing anti-virus and anti-spyware software will have a much better chance of handling threats if yoiu can stop your computer from automatically wandering into the high-risk areas of the Internet.

via HostsFile.org.

So as you can see a quick change to your hosts file will allow you to block parts of the net that you not only don’t want you kids getting into but also things that you don’t want your computer getting into. With help on how to setup, HostsFile.org is a good start to keeping your system clean.

Toby

Global Spam Volume on the Decline, Report Shows

Hey, here’s some good news: it looks like spam is on the decline. According to Symantec’s latest State of Spam and Phishing report, the volume of spam and junk mail in circulation around the world has been decreasing steadily since August, and dropped noticeably around Christmas. No one has a concrete explanation for the drop-off, but Symantec’s Eric Park suggests that the demise of major botnets may have played a role.

The notorious Rustock botnet, for example, virtually disappeared after December 25th. Once the most powerful botnet in all the land, Rustock now accounts for less than 0.5-percent of all the world’s spam. Two other big-time botnets, the Lethic and the Xarvester, have also gone mysteriously quiet in recent weeks. So, why did these botnets suddenly stop spamming? No one knows. But, until they start up again, we should all enjoy our (relatively) clean inboxes while we can.

via Global Spam Volume on the Decline, Report Shows.

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