It used to be the only way for your computer to be infiltrated was to download a bogus program or to slip a virus laden floppy disk in your machine. New advances in networking has made computers as safe as leaving all your doors open and letting your newspapers collect on your front porch.
I was proud to be one of the first to have a cable modem in my town but shocked at how little concern the Road Runner folks had towards security. For a long time, you could click on Network Neighborhood and access the hard drive of other cable modem users in area. Even now, most folks don’t realize how much of their data goes zipping through other routers on it’s way to the internet. Still, I love my cable modem and you’d have to rip it from my cold dead hands before I’d give it up.
The addition of a 802.11 wireless router (WiFi) was the next step in making my home computing a joy. It was also the next step in having zero security protection for my data. A research engineer and student have found a way to hack into systems by sending a barrage of wireless packets that cause an overflow in wireless cards device driver. ( More Info ) The two will be demonstrating their technique at the upcoming Black Hat USA 2006 conference.
I continue to recommend anyone with a computer keep the following in mind at all times: Backup and Security. These should never be after thoughts or things you’ll get around to. Take the time now! Our friends over at Sunbelt Software recently posted a great set of tips for anyone with a wireless network at home. You’ll want to check out this weeks Tech Tip from Deb Shinder. ( More Info )