Four Common Computer Security Myths
We’ve all heard them, those little snippets of information that you heard from a friend who got it from a friend of a friend of a friend.Let us separate a little fact from fiction once and for all.
#1 Antivirus and Security companies create viruses
Huh? Really? Legitimate companies DO NOT create viruses to infect your computer to get you to buy their product. Those that do this are known as “ransomware” and are in fact viruses in their own right. Legitimate companies such as Norton, Avast, and Panda, will not create a virus or infect your computer. There are plenty of real threats in the world that these companies have to deal with.
#2 The Internet is the biggest security threat
Not quite. While this statement is not wrong, the internet is a threat, who uses the internet? That’s right, we all do. The vast majority (well over 70%)of security breaches in 2013 were caused by… Human error! This is not to say that we do this on purpose, in reality we don’t, but we make mistakes. We go to those websites and click on those links that our security professionals tell us not to, bringing the security network around us crashing down. You are part of the solution. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you receive an email from someone that you don’t know, don’t click on the link. If you receive an odd email from someone that you do know, you may want to contact them before clicking on any links in the email.
#3 Apple is safer than Microsoft
Some what true, we can see why people would think this. The simple answer is no, Apple is no safer than Microsoft. “But why do we see all the viruses attacking Windows machines?” you might ask. Good question. Microsoft Windows represents about 80% of the computer market, hackers know this, and basically use a shotgun approach to hacking by focusing on Windows. So no, the apple O Sis not immune to viruses. In fact, in 2012 the Flashback Trojan affected over 600,000 Macs, making them inoperable. In 2013, Apple users were hit with a Java attack that came from a corrupted file on the iPhone. And this year, the Shellshock/Bash vulnerability is said to have compromised the files of over1,000,000 users. Don’t think that just because you have an Apple, that you are safe.
#4 Hackers only Target Big Businesses
Again, not true. These stories find their way into the news only because it involves a large amount of people. But there are new cases everyday of a small company or a single person getting hacked. Just because you are a smaller target, does not mean you are not a target. You have personal information stored on your computer that can be used for identity theft and fraud. It is not unusual for there to be a higher amount of small business or individual hacking incidents than big business, again, it’s just market share. Protect yourself. If you have a small company use a skilled, legitimate information systems partner. Regularly get an outsider’s point of view. IT professionals can tend to believe that if they set it up and it is running then all is ok. An outsider’s point of view can help your IT insider see what they are missing.
For over 30 years, Scott Greene of Evidence Solutions, Inc. has been helping companies meet the challenges of the swiftly evolving computer technology industry. Scott went to work for IBM. Scott studied Systems Engineering at the University of Arizona. He has since earned certifications in many products and programming languages.
The Evidence Solutions team analyzes data from Computers, Cell Phones, Black Boxes, Dispatch Systems, Medical Records, Email systems and more. Scott then explains the digital evidence in plain English.
Scott’s extensive knowledge draws clients to him from all over the United States as well as Internationally for consulting, Forensics and expert witness services. His extensive and diverse experience allows him to be an expert in many facets of digital and electronic evidence. Scott, a sought after speaker and educator, travels throughout the country sharing his knowledge and presenting to local, regional, national and International organizations.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.