Internet Safety

Recently, I responded to a posting on Apple’s discussion list asking if she needed to get 3rd Party Security Software. Someone posted and gave the opinion that “OS X has all the built-in security that anyone would need.” I agreed, but reminded that “you have to use them.”

Let me expand a bit on what I wrote.
  • You have a firewall (in Windows or OS X); use it!
  • Speaking of firewall, turn on application access. (See this Macworld article for some good recommendations.)
  • Regularly back-up your data! TimeMachine is fine. So is something else. See what I wrote in my blog, System Back-ups. And back things up before you install updates.
  • Both Safari and Firefox have antiphishing mechanisms. Use them.
  • Keep your brain engaged.
    • You have no need to click on a URL in an email from a bank in which you don’t have an account!. I mean, really. Do you have that many bank accounts that you cannot remember that you do not have one at Barclays Bank?
    • Even if you really do use E-bay a lot, E-bay doesn’t send emails about problems with your account with URLs on systems in Korea
    • And no one, no one, no one wants your help to get at $15M. No widow in some foreign country has heard of what a kind-hearted, trustworthy person you are, no matter how kind-hearted and trustworthy you are.
    • No, you did not win a big Internet e-mail address lottery.
    • Did you really do business in another country and forget that they still owed you $75,000? (As I told a friend, “Holy cow! How did I forget that? At my standard rate that is 6 weeks of work! Maybe it was a fixed price contract.”)

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