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David Balaban is a computer security researcher with over 15 years of experience in malware analysis and antivirus software evaluation. David runs the Privacy-PC.com project which presents expert opinions on the contemporary information security matters, including social engineering, penetration testing, threat intelligence, online privacy and white hat hacking. As part of his work at Privacy-PC, Mr. Balaban has interviewed such security celebrities as Dave Kennedy, Jay Jacobs and Robert David Steele to get firsthand perspectives on hot InfoSec issues. David has a strong malware troubleshooting background, with the recent focus on ransomware countermeasures.

Who Told You That VPNs Give You Anonymity?

Most arguments that I saw go like this: a) VPN services themselves say that they provide anonymity; b) all hackers use VPNs; c) expert Mr. X said this during his webinar. Mr. X does not commit cybercrimes himself, but for some reason believes that he has the right to give advice to those who commit them daily. For starters, let’s define the terms, as practice shows, not everyone understands what anonymity is (which does not prevent them from discussing this topic from an expert position). I will try to explain as simply and easily as possible. Anonymity Anonymity is when everyone sees your actions, but no one knows you are doing them. For example, you put on a black hat with holes for the eyes, black jeans and a black jacket and go to an unfamiliar square and took a pee there. In thi...

Top 10 IoT Security Tips

For most people, Internet of Things is, first of all, his home computer network of smart devices. The number of such devices and the need to connect them together and to the Internet is constantly increasing. Some devices work with local networks; others require access to data stored on specific websites. Besides, many people want to remotely control their house. This kind of communication between you and your IoT devices is the main target of hackers and malicious programs. Tips To Keep IoT Devices Safe Here is the list of tips that will help you stay safe while using the Internet of Things: 1. Always lock the screen and/or password protect the smart devices connected to the Internet. This will prevent unauthorised access. 2. Change the default passwords for all websites, smart devices, a...

The Crypt0L0cker Ransomware Is Underway

The attackers behind the new version of the Crypt0L0cker ransomware seem to never get sleepy, bored or tired of their underground business. Although the name coincides with the above slang word, the ransom Trojan in question is very vigorous. The infection uses a mix of RSA-2048 and AES-128 ciphers to lock down one’s important files beyond recovery. Then, it randomises filenames, appends random ышч lower alphabetic characters extension to all the encoded entries, and blackmails the victim for money otherwise the data will stay inaccessible. The attack process looks really scary. The perpetrating code replaces the original desktop wallpaper with a dark warning image and also expresses its demands via ransom notes called -Instruction.bmp and -Instruction.html. The victim is told to download ...

What Everybody Should Know About Bitcoins

Humans don’t really need anything, except for food, shelter, clothing and clean water. Theoretically, if everyone had the perfect amount of each of those things, we would have no need for money and everyone would live happily ever after. In the real world, some people have more water than others but perhaps less access to food or clothing and trading or bartering for a better balance has always been necessary. But picture this: the local mall, with every shopper carrying around like bulks of cloth or construction grade lumber, to each shopkeeper one by one. Trying to find the one who both has what they need, and needs the thing that they happen to be carrying, kind of ridiculous. That is why we need currency. Compared to cattle, for instance, is easier to use, more durable, and more compac...

Beware Of Hohosearch.com Browser Hijacker

Hohosearch.com prevents access to reputable websites. In particular, it is known to block major search engines like Google, Bing, etc. The search attack is powered by the corresponding browser hijacker. The latter is a computer application. Like any other, it installs into computer system. As the program runs, it scans the computer system to detect installed web browsers. Their settings undergo modification to enable Hohosearch.com redirects. It is hard to explore the web with the infection affecting your web-navigation. Most users are well aware of the impacts. They try to remove Hohosearch.com redirect at the earliest opportunity. Their decision derives high praise. It also requires implementation. The hijacker does not give in easily. It is not that one cannot get rid of Hohosearch with...

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