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Amazon Alexa Spot

Disable Human Voice Recording Review in Alexa

As reported in Venture Beat on August 3, 2019, Amazon has almost silently announced that Alexa users are now able to choose to block human reviewers from listening to their recordings. Although this human listening is intended to provide quality assurance that the AI...
Thumb Drive Crime Scene

Q: Is it safe to use thumb drives with my work computer?

A: Let's start with this: Federal cybersecurity guidelines are that any portable external storage (USB drive, thumb drive, flash drive, SD card, etc.) are not to be permitted. This is a mandate for government systems, government contractors, health care providers,...

Q: What is an encrypted chat client?

A: Probably best to take this one bite at a time:

Encrypted: The process of encoding a message or information in such a way that only authorized parties can access it and those who are not authorized cannot.

Amazon Echo 2nd Generation

Stop Amazon From Listening

As reported yesterday, Amazon has thousands of staff listening to you through your Echo devices. But there is a way to stop this listening: Open the Alexa app on your mobile device. Select the menu icon. Select Settings, found at the bottom of the submenu list....
Amazon Echo 2nd Generation

Yes, They ARE Listening

As reported in Bloomberg <https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-10/is-anyone-listening-to-you-on-alexa-a-global-team-reviews-audio>, Amazon has thousands of staff listening to what their devices hear. Based on the information provided by Amazon, it is...

Q: Is it possible to eliminate the possibility that opening an email will result in a virus on my computer?

A: If you are talking about absolutes, no. However, you can dramatically reduce the chances of compromise when opening email: Use an email provider that pre-scans your mail for malicious content. This is one reason I favor Google. All incoming email is scanned by...

Facebook pays teens to spy on them

As reported on TechCrunch January 29, 2019, it appears that as bad as we thought Facebook to be, it has the resources to be far worse. Facebook has been secretly paying people to install a “Facebook Research” VPN that lets the company suck in all of a user’s phone...
Android malware

More Junk Apps on Android

All of these apps do the same thing–add an advertising layer on top of Google Maps. At least one even has the gall to request payment to remove the ads in Google Maps–ads that wouldn’t exist except for that app itself!If you have any of these apps installed on your Android device, remove them ASAP.

Garage Sale! Ubiquiti UniFi Cloud Key

Ubiquiti UniFi Cloud Key New, in box (2 units), 1 floor display unit UniFi® Controller Hybrid Cloud Secure UniFi Hybrid Cloud Technology Fully Integrated, Stand-Alone UniFi Controller Hardware Remote, Private Cloud Access to the UniFi ControllerManage Your Networks...

Garage Sale! Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC Pro Wireless Access Point

Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC Pro Wireless Access Point New, in box (2 units available) The UniFi AC Pro AP features the latest Wi-Fi 802.11ac, 3x3 MIMO technology in a refined industrial design and is ideal for deployment of maximum‑performance wireless networks. Manage...

Garage Sale! Ubiquiti UniFi Security Gateway Pro

Ubiquiti Unifi Security Gateway ProSN: 1801kfcecda036c89-4nqi9w New, in box. Enterprise Gateway Router with Gigabit Ethernet Advanced Security, Monitoring, and Management Sophisticated Routing Features Integrates with UniFi® Controller SoftwareManage Your Networks...

Garage Sale! Ubiquiti Unifi Switch 24 250W

Ubiquiti Unifi Switch 24 250WSN: 1752g788a20fa31ba-2n5und Floor model, unboxed. Managed PoE+ Gigabit Switches with SFP Build and expand your network with Ubiquiti Networks® UniFi® Switch, part of the UniFi line of products. The UniFi Switch is a fully managed, PoE+...

Garage Sale! Ubiquiti Unifi Switch 16 150w

Lucky you, Santa left some IT goodies under our tree! Ubiquiti UniFi Switch 16 150WSN: 788A20FD84B9New, in box.The UniFi® Switch delivers robust performance over its 18 independent switching ports. Two SFP ports offer optical connectivity, and 16 Gigabit Ethernet...

Q: Is getting on the unsecured WIFI connection at a library a really unsafe idea?

A: An insecure network is an insecure network - regardless of the physical or geographical location. As to how unsafe it may be, depends on your definition. The biggest issue is the good possibility that your network traffic is watched. This means that any username,...

Q: How to make a strong password I can remember?

A: Sorry, that is simply not possible. The current US Government recommendation for strong passwords is a minimum of 15 characters. Our brains would have a tough time remembering just five such passwords, much less a different password for every website. The easy...

Q: What precautions can be taken to avoid being traced online?

A: This is a topic that books are written about (several by yours truly). Much depends on how high a value target you are (if the NSA is interested in you, good luck), and what you need to use the internet for. But here is a list to get started: Use a quality VPN...
Cybersecurity is everyones business

Get Your Bitdefender Upgrade

MintzIT has upgraded Bitdefender With over 40 million malware waiting to harvest, corrupt, or encrypt your data, anti-malware software is an essential addition to the operating system of any and every operating system. The only anti-malware product we currently...

Q: How secure is personal information that we provide to hotels?

Unless you are staying at some shady facility, the law requires a drivers license or other ID in order to reserve a room. With your state-issued ID in hand, your information is monetized when sent to the hotel ownership (some other multinational Corp) for sales and marketing.

Q: What are the reasons my school and work track everything I do on the Internet?

A: If someone came to you asking for $1000, the keys to your car, and your credit card, you would probably want to know what they were using them for. Not so different for your school and work.

Q: How often should I change my passwords?

A: According to NIST (one of the federal groups tasked with creating best practices for cybersecurity), there is no longer any recommendation on password aging. That doesn't mean it's not a bright idea to do so, just that there are no recommendations. The...

Latest Books

Latest Reviews

A Great Step-By-Step Guide You'd be Foolish Not to Follow

5 star reviews

reviewsThis reviewer is a 60+, female, self-trained MAC user currently in OS10.8.1 and getting ready to buy a new MAC with Mavericks OS. I purchased and read Marc’s book cover to cover in preparation for understanding the scope of my commitment to get my new Maverick OS computer set-up in the most optimal way, for my home-use network. I want to get it hardened from the get-go. This was the best forty odd-dollar investment I could have made.Security book reviews

Practical Paranoia for the non-paranoid...

5 star reviews
reviews

I became a client of Marc’s five or six years ago when I said goodbye to Windows, became a Mac shop and put in an OS X server. So when Marc announced his new book, Practical Paranoia, I didn’t waste any time buying a copy.

The reason is simple, when Marc tells you something, you can take it to the bank.

The book is clean, well organized, designed to be completely accessible for the non-geek, and provides step-by-step screen shots and instructions on how to save yourself from the nightmare of data loss or breach.Security book reviews

 

Best Book on the Subject

5 star reviews
reviews

Easy to use – I did about half of the recommendations in under an hour. I’m a writer and I run a business from home. I’m not so technically adept. When I travel, I hate packing up all my equipment and putting things in storage to make sure that, in the unlikely event the house is robbed, all my data is safe and I could easily restart my business from a backup in the cloud. This book is a “paint-by-numbers” approach to security for every aspect of a computer system, from backups to email to encrypting the physical drives.

There’s really nothing else on the subject, unless you want to read technical blogs for days. This book has it all in one place and makes it easy for even a normal person (like me).Security book reviews