Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

A Special Day Indeed – SDAV 2011 License Giveaway

Folks, I Am Sincerely Pleased to Announce My Latest Holiday Software License Giveaway Drawing.

The folks at PCTools have generously donated 10 licenses for Spyware Doctor With Antivirus 2011 to me, to award to my readers. I sincerely thank them for that. So I am going to do a random drawing ¹ contest from those who “enter”. The contest will close at midnight (Pacific) Thursday, June 2nd, and the winners announced Friday.

PC Tools Spyware Doctor™ with AntiVirus 2011 I am going to start this out by telling you that I have a very high regard for the effectiveness of this anti-malware and Internet Security tool, (so high, I installed it on my mother’s machine) and have been using it for years now – since before they acquired the award-winning Threatfire heuristics engine. Not only is “SD” very good at detecting and removing viruses, trojans, keyloggers, etc., but it is also very good at blocking that *stuff* from getting onto your machine as well.
(And I have said many times: an ounce of malware prevention is worth a couple pounds of cure.)

From the publisher:

Editor’s Choice Antivirus and Antispyware in One
Spyware Doctor with AntiVirus combines two powerful engines to detect and remove unknown threats faster.

  • Antivirus guards against malicious PC threats.
  • Antispyware prevents information and identity theft.

It defends your computer against malware attacks with multiple layers of protection using proactive, reactive and automatic anti spyware antivirus software protection to stop threats at every entry point. Now includes memory scanning, behavior profiling, and report cards to provide up-to-date protection and status monitoring for your PC.

Please notice in this slideshow, the various “layers’ (ten of ’em) of protection SDAV’s technology provides. (I hope you never have to use any of those last three.. )

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

SDAV 2011’s main features and improvements are:

IMPROVED! Detection, blocking and removal of threats awarded top ratings by independent testing labs and recommended by reviewers worldwide.

  • Built on award-winning Spyware Doctor™ antispyware technology.
  • Advanced rootkit detection technology identifies and removes hidden threats from your PC.
  • NEW! Memory Scanner helps eradicate threats lurking on your PC.
  • NEW! Download Guard checks your downloads against a cloud-based network.

NEW! Multi-layered browsing protection against web-based attacks including phishing attempts, rogueware scare tactics and silent drive-by downloads.

  • Uses a combination of reactive blacklists and proactive content analysis.
  • Site Guard blocks you from visiting potentially unsafe or phishing websites and from downloading threats through your browser, IM or email.
  • Cookie Guard automatically removes potentially malicious tracking and advertising cookies.
  • Browser Guard stops automatic downloads, fake AV and malicious files from compromised or exploit websites.

Constant real-time IntelliGuard™ protection monitors for malicious activity involving spyware, viruses, tracking cookies, suspicious ActiveX® objects, browser hijackers, keyloggers, Trojans and more.

Quick links Overview Features Accolades Details

Spyware Doctor, in the years I have been using it, has never failed to earn my regard and respect. My (very few) critiques nitpicks have been minor. I consider it a most important tool in my fight against cybercrime. It is Top Drawer – period. (That’s my “review”.)

These 1 year (subscription) licenses retail for $39.99, and can be used on up to three of your PC’s.

How to enter? Residents of the US and Canada only may enter the contest drawing by simply clicking on “comment” (below), and entering a name and a valid e-mail (so PC Tools can send you a license key) in the form. Actually commenting is optional. And, I shouldn’t have to say this, but multiple entries will result in disqualification. (In this contest. Entry in prior contests doesn’t count against you.)
Again, the license can be used on up to three PC’s.

Note: SDAV is an antivirus; and you only want one AV on your machine at a time. It is also not a good idea to have more than one heuristic (behavior detection) tool onboard (active) so you may need to disable or uninstall some products before installing Spyware Doctor With Antivirus.

¹ All entrants will be placed into Random.org’s “list randomizer”, and the top  10 results will be the winners. A 30-day, limited-function trial of Spyware Doctor with AV can be downloaded here, Free 30-day trial. Try it out yourself. (And then leave a comment. You may just win one of these valuable prizes!)

Again, my thanks to the folks at PCTools for making this Giveaway possible!

UPDATE: This contest has concluded. The winners can be seen here, Spyware Doctor Winners. My thanks to all who partcipated.

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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May 30, 2011 Posted by | advice, antivirus, computers, cyber crime, Internet, PC, rootkits, security, software, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 46 Comments

How To Remove Your Name From Search Engines and Social Networking Sites

Your Private Information Made Public

Folks, sometimes it is best to not reinvent the wheel; so today I am going to refer you to three excellent resources for the methods you need to know about if you are concerned about your personal information, and how websites (and the Gov’t) are collecting – and posting – it on the Internet.

If you are serious about protecting your identity and personal security, you should take actions now to block your personal information from public viewing.

Remove Your information from People Search Databases, Social Networks, and Search Engine ResultsJessicaM

Do you know what kind of personal information about you can be found from Internet? Do you know how to remove your name, address, phone number, pictures, bad comments and negative reviews from Google and other search engine results? Do you know how to delete your personal information from online people search database records?

I am putting this one first as it is comprehensive and well researched. It is four pages long, and packed with good info.


How To Permanently Delete Your Account on Popular Websites — Cameron Chapman

What we often don’t realize when signing up for all these accounts, though, is how difficult it can be to permanently delete our accounts when we’ve had enough. Some require complicated, multi-step processes that can stretch over the course of days (or weeks). Others take less time, but still require multiple steps by the user.

This article outlines the steps for removing your account/profile on:
Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, Google, Ebay, Wikipedia, Flickr/Yahoo!, Windows Live, StumbleUpon, WordPress, Amazon, YouTube, and PayPal.


If you want to stay inconspicuous while online, here are some products, services, and best practices to put to use.
How to Stay Anonymous Online — Erik Griffith

Some might say that the Internet was built on anonymity. Without it, the Internet might not have become what it is today—a place where free speech reigns supreme (maybe to a fault). However, as social networks prevail—and über-companies like Google do all they can to market to you more effectively—your privacy on the Web comes into question. The good news is that you can take back control of what others see and know of you online. Here’s how.

Subtopics: Safe Surfing, Anonymous E-mail, Social (Network) Security

The article contains links to programs and tools you may be interested in.. if your privacy is a concern to you.


Update: Here is another resource, brought to my attention by Rick Robinette:

I came across a really cool site that, if anything, is a real education about online accounts and profiling. The site is called AccountKiller.

AccountKiller – Do you care about your personal data? We provide instructions to remove your account or public profile on most popular websites, including Skype, Facebook, Windows Live, Hotmail / Live, Twitter, MSN / Messenger, Google and many more. Want to create an account somewhere? Check our Blacklist first to see if it’s even possible to remove your profile!

What AccountKiller specializes in is collecting direct links and deleting instructions to make account termination an easier process.Read more..

*     *     *

Bonus: additional recommended reading: Does a Blogger’s Opinion Really Matter?

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.


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June 15, 2010 Posted by | computers, how to, Internet, privacy, security | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

How To Play Online At Work

cubicle Don Reisinger over at C/Net writes, “We all spend some of our time at work doing things that have nothing to do with our job. We surf the Web. We play games. Sure, we all need our downtime, and the enlightened manager knows that. But still, we’d rather just surf in private than deal with the raised eyebrows.

That’s why we need ways to ensure that when our boss surprises us or sneaks up behind us, she’ll think that we’re actually working.

Now, I hope you won’t think me too much of a curmudgeon, but…
* At a recent major IT “expo”, the keynote speaker kicked off the show by saying, “IT lost 100,000 jobs last month but..
* Far more companies are downsizing than are hiring, and there are now more job seekers-per-job-opening than ever before in history.
* You’re not twelve any more.
* No amount of camouflage or quick Alt-Tab-ing is going to fool your machine’s logs, or the corporate screen-capture “productivity” monitoring software.

However, if you want to see the latest Fool The Boss tools, click here. There’s some new ones on me.
(And.. here’s another thought; maybe your boss saw this article too..)

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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April 18, 2009 Posted by | computers, tech | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Gigabit Ethernet Didn’t Make Internet Faster

Reader asks why upgrading to Gigabit Ethernet didn’t improve their Web surfing speed.

Q: I recently purchased a Linksys WRT 310 wireless router that has four Gigabit ports. My Dell desktop is a XPS which I was told was “Top of the Line” has a built-in gigabit port. I even purchased new cables to make sure my network was going to be “gigabit”. I hooked it all up and I don’t see any improvement in my internet. The salesman told me that “gigabit” was the fastest.. so how come I’m not surfing faster? Did I do something wrong or do I need to buy a different brand? Thanx.

A: No, you (most likely) didn’t do anything “wrong”, and you don’t need to buy a different router.

Let me, first of all, cover a few “basics” (see also, Wired or Wireless?*)
Kilo = 1,000 = thousand
Mega = 1,000,000 = million
Giga = 1,000,000,000 = billion

And then let me ask you to look at a simple network diagram.
simpleLAN

In this diagram, the Internet is represented by the “cloud” (thus.. “cloud computing”) and I made it appropriately dark and stormy. The Internet connection is represented as the yellow zigzag — this can be a phone line (dial-up, DSL, IDSN) or a coaxial cable.
The blue is your (now Gigabit) Ethernet cabling.

For sake of argument, I made the Internet connection a cable High-speed connection, and I made the download speed a Premium-grade 12 Mbps .. 12 “megabits” per second. (I’d like to have this in RL.. but I have 3 Mbps DSL).
Note that I said “download speed”. Unless you order a special line into your home/office, your “Internet speed” is always your download speed. And, your “upload” speeds are always significantly slower.. as represented by the 486 kilobits per second.

The lines you changed are the blue lines. And so, yes, you have billion-bit lines there (Gigabit). You have multiplied by a thousand the theoretical rate at which computers A, B, and C can “talk” to the router and to each other. You did not change how the modem and the cloud are talking. That is still 12 Megabits down/point 486 (.486) Megabytes up.

Your Internet speed is controlled by two things: one, your service “level” (3 Mbps is more expensive than 1.5, and 6 Mbps is even more expensive, etc.) and two, the technology that can come into your home — dial-up, DSL, ISDN, Satellite, cable, wireless, and fibre-optic.

Because your desktop can “talk” to the router at a higher rate of bits, you might notice a very slight improvement in surfing speed.. but, if you want faster Internet, you have to upgrade either your service level, or/and the method it comes in on (the yellow zigzag) .. say, upgrading from dial-up to cable.

The advantage to Gigabit Ethernet comes in when transferring data across the LAN.. say, from computer A to computer B. Such as if you are backing up the files on A over to B, or “streaming” videos from C to A and B.

The Linksys is a good router (though I read that it runs hot, so you want to keep it in an open, well-ventilated area) and all-Gigabit on your LAN is a “good thing”.
I just think you were expecting the wrong results.

Today’s free link: Curious as to what speed your ISP is really providing? Click here, and pick the “server” location nearest to you. You’ll see both your upload and download speeds. Flash required.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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March 8, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, hardware, Internet, networking, routers, routers and WAPs | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

WOT In Action

Have you installed the safer surfing WOT toolbar yet? I install it on all my friend’s and family’s machines (and offer to, to all my clients) because its red – yellow – green “traffic signal” warning system is simple enough for young children.

Here, it’s warning of a dangerous hyperlink embedded in a phishing email that’s attempting to steal my identity and banking login…
WOT_at_work
..and should you be so foolish as to ignore (or.. simply not notice) the red circle, and click on the link anyway, and try to go to the website..
totalprotectwot
A warning curtain intervenes. It tells you why the website has “earned” the very bad red rating. You must click “Go to site” to proceed to the website itself. (I won’t say that if you do do that, you deserve whatever bad things happen to you and/or your machine.. but, I might think it…)

These ratings are determined by you, me, and other Internet surfers… not some faceless giant corporation or government agency. It is “people driven”, and you get a vote.

Check it out. Visit http://mywot.com today. Protect yourself from “phraud”, and “phishing”, and “rogue antivirus” programs .. like TotalProtect2009. (See Is that anti-spyware program really spyware? and Total Protect 2009/ TotalProtect2009 – 3 Removal Solutions)

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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January 20, 2009 Posted by | advice, browsers, computers, cyber crime, Firefox, IE 7, Internet, searching, security, software, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment