Tag Archives: security

A guide to Facebook privacy settings

Ghacks has published here a small but useful guide to basi security settings in Facebook.

Suggestions include the fact that “[…] , this menu is entirely customizable. If you do not want anyone who is not on your friends list to access any of your information then you can do this from here. If you don’t mind if friends of friends also have access to your profile then this is an option too. For example, if I wanted everyone to be able to see when my birthday is then I would first click on the ‘Customize Settings’ tab. From here, I would enable everyone to see my birthday. It is as simple as that. Let’s take a closer look at each of the different settings that you can edit when it comes to Facebook privacy. […]

First of all is the ‘Posts by me’ section. This will include any status updates that you write, any wall posts that you make, or any photos that you upload. Obviously, the most sensible thing to do here is to set this to ‘Friends only’. This is because you do not want people that you do not know getting access to things that you have said, or your personal information or images.
The ‘Bio and Favourite Quotations’ section is up to you whether or not you would like to make this section private. However, it is important to remember that you may be putting private information about yourself in the Bio section which others will be able to see if you do allow this section to be public rather than private. The ‘Family and Relationships’ section is another one that is best kept private. The reason for this is because if you allow this information to be public then everyone can see members of your family which not everyone would be comfortable with. Of course, it is up to you, but it is best to be on the safe side. The rest of the information in this section of the privacy settings would usually be better if it were set to ‘Friends Only’, because it is all personal information. […]”

I think the guide is useful despite the fact that this brain confusing level of security that is implemented by Facebook for me is still unreliable and difficult to understand by average user.

This post as a comment also here.


A guide to surviving hacks

Justin Pot at makeuseof.com gives us the link of a guide wrote by Matt Smith called “Hackerproof: your guide to pc security” that includes “[…]

  • The history and types of modern malware
  • Which operating system is most secure
  • Good security habits that keep you safe
  • Software that can protect you
  • The importance of backing up your data
  • Recovering from a malware attack

[…]” (full article at http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/download-hackerproof-guide-pc-security/).

And here are the direct links to download or to read it in scribd.

Worth a read!


Facebook email still blocks some links

Ryan Singel at Wired reports that “[…]  Facebook’s “modern messaging system” may make it convenient to seamlessly move between instant messaging and a Facebook.com e-mail account, but not if you are sharing a link to a file sharing site. Facebook began blocking BitTorrent link-sharing on Facebook walls and news feeds last spring, and also started blocking private messages between users that included a link to torrents on the Pirate Bay. […]” (full article at http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/11/facebook-link-blocking).

I do not endorse or support bittorrent sharing for protected materials, but I think that blocking bit torrent anyway is quite meaningless. I also think that is strange this kind of approach by a company that has demonstrated that security is maybe its last concern.

This post as a comment also at   http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/11/facebook-link-blocking/comment-page-1/#comment-58772


Mr Z way of life

E.B. Boyd at Fast Company (http://www.fastcompany.com/user/263893) reports Mr. Zuckerberg last coming out: “[…] Users are asking Facebook for more control over their data, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at the Web 2.0 Summit today, but the company leans toward making things more open. “Mediating that tension is challenging,” he said. […] Facebook’s core philosophy is: “Facebook doesn’t ask for permission. It just asks for forgiveness.” Zuckerberg said company staffers debate the issues of who should have control over which pieces of data “every day.” Because Facebook is on the forefront of these issues, and because it’s venturing into new areas, “The correct answer isn’t completely obvious,” he said. And philosophically, the company tends to “err on the side of opennes […]” (Full article at http://www.fastcompany.com/1703183/mark-zuckerberg-web-2-0).

Hey Mr. Z! You’re running a company, and a big one, with lot of sensitive datas. You’re not working anymore at University or in your backyard with only test datas.

Would be so difficult to have a more adult approach?

Web is based on ideas, but those cease to be the only driver in the moment that they meet business and involve other people. From this point on you need to follow some rules and  security is one of this, despite your “openess”.

This post as a comment also at http://www.fastcompany.com/1703183/mark-zuckerberg-web-2-0


Facebook Email coming: trick or treat?

Stephen Shankland at Cnet (http://www.cnet.com/profile/Shankland/) reports that Facebook is going to announce his own Email service that will be integrated with Facebook services (full article at http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-20022625-264.html).

“[…]Facebook already has a rudimentary system for direct, private messages among its members, including several people in one discussion thread. But it’s missing not just the ability to communicate outside Facebook, but also countless useful features available in real e-mail. Forget filtering, free-form attachments, a means to organize messages, and access from third-party e-mail client software such as Outlook or Thunderbird. […]”.

I think and agree that mail is a natural extension of Facebook activities, but I ask my self a very complex question on this opportunity.

Facebook is having problems managing its current structure, I’m not confident that will be able a more complex add on such as email.

In my opinion would have been better to consolidate the existing and then focus again on development.

This post as a comment also at http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-20022625-264.html


iOS 4.1 security flaw

Brian X. Chen at Wired (http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/author/brian-x-chen-2/) reports a security flaw that allows bypassing iPhone code lock: simply “[…] tap the “Emergency call” button, then enter three pound signs, hit the green call button and immediately press the lock button. That simple procedure gives a snoop full access to the Phone app on the iPhone, which contains the address book, voicemail and call history […] (Full article http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/10/iphone-snoop/).

🙂 also Apple has some funny things to do without jailbreaking…


Facebook informations download

Matthew Humphries at geek.com and Martin at ghacks.net report that Facebook rolled out a new features that enables the download of all information on local (full article at http://www.geek.com/articles/news/facebook-now-lets-you-download-your-information-2010106/ and at http://www.ghacks.net/author/martin/)

Really usefull to have on local what you and your friends posted online.  Maybe to double check what is going to be made public at next security flaw? 😉

This post as a comment also at http://www.geek.com/articles/news/facebook-now-lets-you-download-your-information-2010106/comment-page-1/#comment-3894496 and at http://www.ghacks.net/2010/10/07/facebook-adds-download-your-information-feature/


A spy toolkit for iPhone

Michael Trei at Dvice (http://dvice.com/archives/author/michael_trei) reports that Brickhouse security markets an “[…] innocent looking USB drive has only one purpose, to download and copy most types of data stored on an iPhone. That means everything including your text messages, voice memos, photos, GPS tracking info, and web searches can be copied quickly be anyone who gets access to your phone for a few minutes […]”. The price is $199 and is available at the moment for iOS3, with iOS4 support coming in september (full article at http://dvice.com/archives/2010/08/spy-stick-lets.php, manufacturer site at http://www.brickhousesecurity.com/iphone-spy-data-recovery-stick.html).

While I don’t endorse neither support the use of such a device, I’m curious about it and ask how can Apple have left such a flaw in security. And we were discussing for antenna problems… 🙂

This post as a comment at http://dvice.com/archives/2010/08/spy-stick-lets.php


The personal nuclear plant

Katie Fehrenbacher at earth2tech (http://earth2tech.com/author/katiefehren/), Ron Schenone at Lockergnome and Ariel Schwartz at Fastcompany (http://www.fastcompany.com/user/153941 ) report that “[…] TerraPower, the nuclear power startup backed by Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, has brought on another couple of high-profile investors for its second round of funding. According to the company this afternoon, TerraPower has raised another $35 million from Khosla Ventures — Vinod Khosla’s venture fund — and Charles River Ventures, in addition to being supported by Gates and the investors at Intellectual Ventures, which was founded by former Microsoft chief technology officer, Nathan Myhrvold […]” (full article at http://earth2tech.com/2010/06/14/bill-gates-backed-nuclear-startup-terrapower-piles-on-investors, at http://www.fastcompany.com/1660316/bill-gates-backed-nuclear-power-startup-gets-35-million and at http://www.lockergnome.com/blade/2010/06/16/bill-gates-wants-power-nuclear-power-for-green-energy/).

I think that, despite everyone fearing the “nuclear option”, this could be part of our future: A source of power non impacting at environmental level (at least in a reasonable amount of time).

On the other side, I don’t understand if this will create a problem of waste or at least of maintenance, but if benefits are obvious in the quite immediate timeframe, on the problems side we are moving the problem to future generations and this is nor fair nor smart.

Another possible problem could arise from those having access to this technology and, more in general to nuclear activities. This could be overrun by limiting the market by regulating it very strictly.

Overall I’m positive on this solution, while I think a set of measures should be put in place to ensure a sustainable and safe approach is guaranted.

This post as a comment also at http://earth2tech.com/2010/06/14/bill-gates-backed-nuclear-startup-terrapower-piles-on-investors/?go_commented=1 and at http://www.lockergnome.com/blade/2010/06/16/bill-gates-wants-power-nuclear-power-for-green-energy/comment-page-1/#comment-217159 and at http://www.fastcompany.com/1660316/bill-gates-backed-nuclear-power-startup-gets-35-million?partner=rss#disqus_thread


Changing settings on a router

Kevin Purdy at Lifehacker writes a very good tutorial on which are the most usefull settings to change on your router (full tutorial at http://lifehacker.com/5553789/what-settings-should-i-change-on-my-wi+fi-router).

Among them here are the main highlights:

  • Change SSID and Administrator password
  • Change your security settings
  • Open and forward any needed ports
  • Setup Dynamic DNS

Everything is fine, but let me add one little thing: do this only if you’re confident in what you’re doing or if you don’t care resetting to factory default.

This post also as a comment at http://lifehacker.com/5553789/what-settings-should-i-change-on-my-wi+fi-router


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