Advice on Instant Messaging Security

Discussion in 'other anti-malware software' started by tamba1, Oct 27, 2007.

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  1. tamba1

    tamba1 Registered Member

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    Hi can someone give me some advice on this please ..

    My parent inlaws are about to start using broadband and will soon be venturing into the world of Instant messaging..

    Although I have talked to them about the many online risks and how to avoid them I am concerned that they may still try to accept files that could be malicous .. Is there any Antivirus/Antispyware sware that can help to protect them from this risk?

    They will be using Yahoo Msgr and MSN Mssgr - though I am open to any suggestions regarding any better/more secure combi messenger tools.. (Flexible messaging systems enabling you to talk to people who use any of the other main messaging tools )I have personally not used one of these combi ones before ..but have heard of the following ones ...Miranda, Trillian, Meebo ..

    They are currently using WinXPSp2 with Firewall enabled running AVG 7.5 Free ,AVG antispyware free , and AVG Rootkit Free .. They are using Firefox and various addons including Noscript and Adblock plus working behind a NATRouter and the following sware has been installed to regularly scan and in the event of problems clean up their PC.

    Link Scanner
    Dr Web

    Superantispyware
    Spywareblaster
    Spybot Search & Destroy
    Adaware 2007
    CW Shredder
    CCleaner

    I have been wondering about installing HIPS for them but I think anything that is too "noisy" asking for lots of confirmations/approvals will bee too much for them ..any comments or suggestions?

    Also I think Remote Assistance wll be a useful tool for me to help him over the coming months and , I would like to know the "safest" way of using this tool .. including firewall confgurations etc

    I look forward to your Advice
    tamba1
     
  2. cheater87

    cheater87 Registered Member

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    Avast has IM scanning in one of its shields. You can get them the free home version.
     
  3. Hipgnosis

    Hipgnosis Registered Member

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    I'd also say use Avast Home with the Instant Messenger protection module and dump AVG Antivirus.
     
  4. StevieE9

    StevieE9 Registered Member

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    Well, no definitions based AV program is going to be foolproof and I simply don't agree that Avast is better than AVG, and more importantly, spyware is much more likely and won't be caught by any AV program.
    However, MSN has the option to link directly to your onboard AV program of choice.

    They should *not* have any option in any Messenger, or multi-messenger program to auto-accept files or invites.

    The simplest thing is for them to remember to right-click context menu scan all downloads with both anti-spyware and AV programs; only accept downloads from genuinely known contacts; only accept downloads that are things they genuinely want; investigate what they are being sent via a web search first; generally exercise caution.

    As far as a multi-protocol messenger is concerned, the open source free 'Pidgin' (formerly 'Gaim') is, IMHO, the best:
    http://majorgeeks.com/Pidgin_d4262.html
     
  5. Empath

    Empath Registered Member

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    You could run Sandboxie, and designate the instant message app as running sandboxed. That way, whatever is done during the session is discarded with the sandbox.
     
  6. tamba1

    tamba1 Registered Member

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    Hmm Empath I am quite tempted by Sandboxie

    Is it user friendly and "easy to use"

    Many Thanks
    tamba1
     
  7. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,

    Use open-source Pidgin - it can use yahoo and msn networks, but is safer, nicer, far less bloated.

    You might want to sandbox the messenger when running - SandboxIE, DefenseWall, DropMyRights ...

    Do not access messages from random morons

    Do not click on links, videos, images etc sent by people under the age of 30, by people who use lol in their daily or strangers.

    If you must accept files and such, do scan them with an anti-virus.

    Mrk
     
  8. Cerxes

    Cerxes Registered Member

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    Sandboxie is very user friendly. I recommend the paid version so you can get the forced feature where selected programs runs directly sandboxed when executed.

    Regarding remote controll I recommend RealVNC using Hamachi as VPN, both free and it´s very safe. Here´s a tutorial how to setup the programs:

    http://www.help2go.com/Tutorials/So...Another_PC_Securely_with_VNC_and_Hamachi.html

    lol :D

    /C.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2007
  9. Tokar

    Tokar Registered Member

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    tamba1 - if you are going to use sandbox, nothing beats Returinil Virtual System (RVS).

    Its free.
    And it works so that anything that is done to the hard drive during the windows session is instantly removed during reboot.

    Sandboxie is fine, but RVS is much better. Just reboot your computer, and all crap is gone!
     
  10. solcroft

    solcroft Registered Member

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    And with it all the things you'd potentially rather keep.

    I find Returnil more useful for enforcing baseline configurations. As an everyday security app, it's just too annoying, unless you don't often make changes to your computer that you want to save.
     
  11. Chuck57

    Chuck57 Registered Member

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    I no longer have any instant messengers on my system except msn messenger and it isn't even set up. I did click on it and it can be run isolated. Seems geswall might be a good, safe and secure option.
     
  12. Tokar

    Tokar Registered Member

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    well people of course need to be aware of this, however this is why they enable the virtual drive to store all data you want to save.
     
  13. LoneWolf

    LoneWolf Registered Member

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    Some very good advice here. :D
     
  14. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Hi tamba1!

    Use any sandbox: Sandboxie, GesWall, or DefenceWall.
     
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