Stories by Erik Larkin

  • Customize hard drive searches with Agent Ransack

    By Erik Larkin | 08 May, 2010 07:55

    Agent Ransack (free) allows for creating customized searches that go well beyond basic Windows searches. Its most powerful features are aimed at programmers and other techies. It's available in a 32-bit and a 64-bit version.

  • Bugs and fixes: Security fixes for all major browsers

    By Erik Larkin | 29 April, 2010 09:57

    Whatever you use to surf the Web needs a fix. Developers of all five major browsers--Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, and Opera--recently released important security patches.

  • New threat: Undetectable Facebook scams

    By Erik Larkin | 29 April, 2010 08:32

    I recently received two Facebook e-mail notifications that set my security spider-sense tingling. Nothing was obviously wrong with the e-mail messages, which said that my friend had tagged a photo of me and then commented on it. But something about a reference to an app named "Who stalks into your profile" just didn't feel right.

  • Browser fingerprints: A big privacy threat

    By Erik Larkin | 28 March, 2010 03:11

    Forget cookies -- even the ultrasneaky, Flash-based "super cookies." A new type of tracking may identify you far more accurately than any cookie -- and you may never know it was there.

  • Firefox 3.5.8 Closes Security Holes

    By Erik Larkin | 19 February, 2010 06:13

    Mozilla yesterday released updates for its Firefox Web browser to shore up vulnerabilities in the 3.5.x and 3.0.x browser versions.

  • Blue screen reboots after patch could mean malware

    By Erik Larkin | 19 February, 2010 07:45

    Redmond announced today it has found the cause of reported rebooting problems after some Windows users installed a recent patch: The systems were infected with malware.

  • Will Cloud Computing Kill Privacy?

    By Erik Larkin | 28 January, 2010 12:53

    As cloud computing speeds ahead, privacy protections are too often being left in the dust.

  • The low-down on low-level rootkits

    By Erik Larkin | 08 January, 2010 09:41

    Rootkits, a type of stealth technology used by malware malefactors, attempt to hide in the dark corners of an infected PC and evade detection. A new post out today from the Microsoft Malware Protection Center shines the spotlight on the evil tools.

  • Privacy guide for Kindle, other E-Book readers

    By Erik Larkin | 23 December, 2009 06:54

    If you're concerned about the privacy implications of reading digital books, take a look at a nice guide put up yesterday by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

  • Serious flaws patched for Adobe Reader and Windows 2000

    By Erik Larkin | 13 January, 2010 12:03

    Today's post-holiday Patch Tuesday included just one bulletin, which is rated critical only for Windows 2000, but Adobe also released a must-have Reader update.

  • New year, new attacks against Adobe zero-day

    By Erik Larkin | 05 January, 2010 06:57

    Crooks are once again exploiting the zero-day hole in Adobe Reader and Acrobat to install a remote-control Trojan on victim machines.

  • Watch Facebook friends without a browser in Fishbowl

    By Erik Larkin | 02 January, 2010 12:58

    The experimental Fishbowl for Facebook application connects you with all your Facebook data without a browser. Its layout differs somewhat from what you'd get on the Web page, but it's otherwise pretty similar.

  • Good Guys Bring Down the Mega-D Botnet

    By Erik Larkin | 28 December, 2009 13:52

    For two years as a researcher with security company FireEye, Atif Mushtaq worked to keep Mega-D bot malware from infecting clients' networks. In the process, he learned how its controllers operated it.

  • Google's Dashboard approach to privacy

    By Erik Larkin | 20 December, 2009 06:35

    If you use Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs, or any of the ever-growing array of Google services, you may have cringed at the trove of personal data the company has gathered. To allay concerns, Google launched Dashboard, a single page housing privacy controls and settings for most of its services.

  • Bugs and fixes: zero-day patch for Internet Explorer 6 or 7

    By Erik Larkin | 20 December, 2009 06:37

    A dangerous vulnerability in Internet Explorer 6 and 7 became publicly known before a fix was available, raising the specter of a high-risk zero-day attack. The bug involves the way IE handles Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) objects, and could let an attacker run any command on a targeted Windows XP, Vista, Server 2003, or Server 2008 PC. Bad guys have already posted sample attack code online. IE 8 is not affected. For more information, see Microsoft Security Advisory 977981.Meanwhile, a bug in the way Windows handles Embedded OpenType could allow a baddie to take over vulnerable Windows XP, 2000, or Server 2003 computers via malicious Websites or poisoned Office documents. The bug can't harm Vista or Server 2008, and doesn't affect Windows 7. Read Microsoft Security Bulletin MS09-065 for details.


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