Methods of infestation and prevention

Discussion in 'other anti-malware software' started by Ailric, Aug 23, 2005.

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  1. Ailric

    Ailric Guest

    Methods of infestation and prevention

    NOTE: I don't claim to be an expert. Most of the solutions listed below are free and good common sense. I wrote this mainly to remind myself and to inform new users of safe hex.
    My last virus was the Happy.99 virus back in 1998. My last bit of malware was in 2002 with CWS registry entries.

    1. Email
    This was the most commom form of infestation but is easy to spot and block.
    Solution:
    -Block out attachments that could be a virus(Outlook Express has this option)
    -Use an email service that scans for malware
    -Don't open any unknown attachments

    2. P2P - Kazaa, Grokster, etc.
    Many files on P2P networks are fake or loaded with malware. Bevare!
    Solution:
    -Don't use these programs
    -If you do, scan every file you download with at least 2 AV's(on-demand backup like BitDefender)
    -Use Limewire(instead of the two mentioned-contains no malware)

    3. Internet Explorer
    One of the biggest problems with IE is ActiveX. By default it won't install an applet by itself but an uniformed computer user might just click OK to install malware.
    Solution:
    -Uninstall Microsoft virtual machine and use Sun Java (search Google for how to do this) to prevent Coolwwwebsearch
    -Use Microsoft Antispyware
    -Use SpywareBlaster and Spybot Search and Destroy
    -Use alternative browser(Opera, Firefox)

    4. Worms
    Worms can send themselves to your computer (usually through an IRC port) without you doing anything wrong.
    Solution:
    -Use a firewall(even just Windows firewall)

    5. Trojans
    Fun little "extras" you didn't know came with your program.
    Solution:
    -Make sure you know what you have downloaded(read the EULA)
    -Check to see if the program has been listed as containing malware(Google search)
    -Download from reputable sites(Download.com, Softpedia, Snapfiles, MajorGeeks)
    -Moitor what installs at startup using a program like Winpatrol or Spywareguard

    6. Dialers
    Mainly from nudie sites. These dial foreign countries instead of using your connection software. Can cost you thousands of dollars... Bevare!
    Solution:
    -Don't go to nudie sites
    -Don't install anything from a nudie site
    -Use Microsoft Antispyware, Adaware, SpywareBlaster and Spybot Search and Destroy
     
  2. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

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    from what i've heard i think you can add messenger and IRC to that list too, Ailric
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2005
  3. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    i also have my doubts about potnoodle having seen their adverts (slag of snacks)
     
  4. Rushed4Time

    Rushed4Time Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Posts:
    13
    There are other types of sites that are generally a good idea to avoid, beyond por; like anything for cracking software (getting pay software for free). You may think since you don't try to hack stuff you're safe, but some innocent Google searches for online tutorials/information will pull up a nasty site or two. If you're researching a program, at least one result will actually be how you can hack it. After I began using shadow User for added security, I wanted to test it out - hit several porn sites, and just could NOT infect my system. My first crack site made my computer cry like a baby and come screeching to a halt, and I didn't even get a chance to download anything!


    I hope you don't mind me adding another potentiall harmful problem and some possible solutions. Your list is excellent and would be enough for most. Anyway, I can do some really dumb stuff sometimes, so my biggest danger to my computer is ME! The solution for people like me is a program like ShadowUser - I think DeepFreeze would also offer the same protection. I'm new to XP, so I make changes in Shadow Mode to make sure I'm not deleting something important, or really screwing my systems up. If it works ok, I simply reboot in normal mode, which undoes it all. Then make my changes, and finally go back into shadow mode; changes saved.

    I respect your security program suggestions. Just a hint for any new to downloading these programs; download, install, and run one at a time! I didn't, and it took forever to find out which program didn't like which other one. Turns out Spywareblaster and Spybot hate meeting in one of my computers... they wind up getting in such a fight that I can't even get online, everything slows to a crawl.

    Some general advice on forums of any kind - it's easy to feel like you found a hot free forum where the people know their stuff (say like here!). My advice is to never download anything recommended by anyone who has been a member less than 6 months, less if they're active and obviously liked by the "expert" posters. I don't trust that it's not some kiddie hacker smamming boards with his "fantastic new download, can't believe I ever lived without it!". Well, I'll try that fantastic download when I've read every review I can find, and feel safe that it's not an infected file.

    Hope you didnt mind my additions (will be glad to delete anything; you didn't really ask to pile stuff on!). Anyway, before I got ShadowUser, I'd spent a week reading everythign I could find about protecting myself, and I can attest to the fact that the list you made is spot on. Thanks for posting!

    Oh, about instant messaging, I read somewhere this is a new venue hackers are realizing an be used for evil-doing. I don't chat much anyway, but my husband wanted us to chat when we're both on our laptops (and sitting in the same room; we're that lazy!). Anyway, I read tons of reviews, and they all sound like they're better off being avoided.

    ***I didn't research it then and have been busy since. Found a site where you download one small file, and then use them for various chat program. anyway, one small download, and you can then use this program to run some chats. Believe it supporded ICQ and AIM (or something aol); can't remember if the other was messenger or not. anyway, I read the key thing to do now is never ever click on a link that is sent to you via chat. I don't know if they somehow make it look like your chatting buddy sent it, or if they hope you're swamped with messages and thus more likely to accidentally click the link. If you have a minimal number of chat buddies, have them let you know if they will be sending a link.

    Yikes I'm really sorry, I just get a bit insane when I think I could possibly make a worhtwhile contribution.
     
  5. Ailric

    Ailric Guest

    Thanks for the contribution!

    I would treat messengers and IRC the same as email with the same warnings.

    I've tried Shadowuser and am really impressed. A program like Shadowuser, GoBack, RestoreIT or DeepFreeze can really enhance the safety and security of a computer.

    DeepFreeze and RestoreIT are NEARLY bulletproof (no flames please!). I've seen DeepFreeze really put to the test with the computer working like new after a reboot. With ResoreIT you can easily backup your configuration to a separate partition making it literally immune to malware. Even a normal format wouldn't affect the partition!
     
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