Remember My Passwords

July 29th, 2009

 

Over the years I must have downloaded and installed/uninstalled quite a few (I cannot remember anymore!) password programs that can help me manage my usernames/passwords combinations.  With so many websites out there that requires you to login first before you can use their services it is quite daunting to remember what username/password to use.  I don’t particularly relish the idea of writing my username/passwords on pieces of paper because it’s inherently insecure besides being foolish.  I am also wary of ‘password managers’  that claims they don’t have access to all the juicy information I entrusted to it. Then again my memory can only hold so much.

So, this morning, I downloaded the LastPass application from http://www.lastpass.com.  According to their website it is “an online password manager and form filler that makes web browsing easier and more secure.”  Good. Exactly what I need. So, I went ahead and installed it. It was easy and straightforward. No hassles at all. Then the application prompted me if I want to search for insecure information on my computer. I sure got the shock of my life when it easily retrieved all of my passwords that I use for Twitter, Facebook, GMail, etc.  It dawned on me, duh! that any malicious application can easily do the same had I inadvertently downloaded one.  Whew! That sure would be big trouble.

Right now I’m testing LassPass but it looks very promising.

We are under cyber-attack!

April 14th, 2008

posted by: Concerned cyber-citizen

The NSCA Consumer Research Study has just been released and I cannot believe what I read. Apparently there’s still a lot of people out there who’s totally in the dark as to what cyber-attackers can do to an unprotected device, and you know what I’m talking about. It’s your computer!It’s just mind-boggling that some people would buy a wireless device (a router, for instance) and skip the part in the installation where they are supposed to secure it. That’s just criminally idiotic and totally irresponsible. It’s like buying a brand new car and leaving the doors unlocked in a public parking lot. Anyway, enough of my ranting and here it is… 

Overview of NSCA Consumer Research Study

Key Findings

  • 49% of consumers have changed their password within the past year (19% of those within the past month)
  • 71% have never heard the phrase “botnet” (29% are aware of botnets)
  • Only 22% think it is at least somewhat likely that your computer’s security could affect homeland security (59% think it is not likely at all)
  • 53% believe it is possible for a hacker to use your computer to launch cyber attacks or crimes against other people, businesses and our nation
  • 46% of consumers are not at all sure of what to do if they became a victim of a cyber crime
  • 48% do not know how to protect themselves from cyber criminals

The New Espionage Threat

April 10th, 2008

I was just reading Businessweek’s April 10, 2008 cover  ”The New Espionage Threat” and I am not surprised.  If hackers can hack into banks and grocery / clothing stores they can surely hack themselves into every computer network out there.  It’s no longer a matter of what these “cyber-attackers” can do but when they can do it.  We can not anymore pretend that our network systems are secure just because they’re behind concrete walls or high fences.  Cyber-attackers don’t even need to be in close proximity to their target to get in.And now, I learned, these cyber-attackers have foreign government sponsorship.  It could even be that it is the foreign government who is orchestrating these attacks and hiding behind inconspicuous companies.  It’s the new spy-game.  And they don’t even have to send a warm body over.They are targeting our defense contractors and doing it in a large scale.