Windows Firewall enough?

Discussion in 'other firewalls' started by nine9s, Mar 17, 2013.

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  1. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    I am currently using Avast 8, and I run a Malewarebytes scan 2-3 times a week, and run Trend Micro House-Call scan and Avira bootable CD about every 6 weeks (I might try some of the other bootable ones like Kaspersky etc, too.)

    I am reluctant to use a third-party firewall because I have had no problems in the past and I am afraid of conflicts and problems with games/system etc. In other words, I am worried a third party firewall would presents more problems than it solves.

    Only reason I would be interested in a firewall is to prevent keylogger type stuff. I do online banking and investment stuff routinely and worried about that to a degree but it seems chances are remote since I am cautious and do not do an risky stuff on internet and never use disks or USB memory stuff of others.

    Also, before I log into any banks or brokerages, I do a full scan with Malewarebytes. Should that detect keyloggers?

    Am I okay with Windows 7 firewall? Any other non-firewall programs to use to scan for them?
     
  2. Cutting_Edgetech

    Cutting_Edgetech Registered Member

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    Are you behind a router or are you connected directly to the internet? Windows Firewall is good enough for the majority of users if they are behind a router. Also, Firewalls are not good protection against keyloggers unless they use HIPS protection. Your Antivirus would be a better defense against keyloggers than a Firewall. There are products that specialize in defending against all types of loggers such as Zemana Antilogger, and Spyshelter Stop-Logger. Everyone will have their own preferences to fill the gap in protection against logging malware. I myself prefer Online Armor's HIPS, Appguard, or VoodooShield which cover all types of malware including loggers. Online Armor is a Firewall, but includes the HIPS protection which is a very good defense against all types of loggers. Some HIPS prompt the user to death to allow or deny an action so you will need to have the knowledge to know if an action is safe or dangerous. If you accidently click allow to a dangerous action you can still become infected. HIPS just require more user intervention. Online Armor normally does not prompt the user excessively. I rarely get prompted for anything due to OA's extremely large white list. I usually only get prompted to allow or deny an action while installing new software. OA has an installation mode for installing software which cuts down on these prompts. OA is a lot more than what you are looking for according to your post so I can't really recommend it to you, but feel free to try it if you are curious. Appguard, and VoodooShield are both amazing products that will stop loggers from ever executing, but they do not detect loggers like an AV does. AG, and VS use entirely different technologies than an AV uses. Appguard, and Voodoo shield contain or stop all potentially dangerous executions on your machine. Appguard takes a more knowledgeable user to configure than Voodoo Shield. VoodooShield does most of the configuring for you with it's training mode.

    If loggers are your main concern then here are a couple of good products that specialize in logging malware for you to try. I would recommend starting with these two first.
    -http://www.zemana.com/
    -http://spyshelter.com/
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
  3. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    Thanks very much. Your post was very informative.
     
  4. Dark Shadow

    Dark Shadow Registered Member

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    IMO instead of loading more security software that creates more room for surface attack,I would consider using Avast Pro Antivirus if not already and use the safeZone and do your regular scans as you do. As far as windows Firewall,it is pretty powerful specially with Advanced security settings

    This is what Avast says of there safe zone. Shop and bank online without worry
    SafeZone™ is a private and isolated virtual window on your desktop, for securing your sensitive financial transactions online. Perfect for auction sites, buying tickets, booking hotels or airlines, online gaming, or any sort of monetary transfer.
     
  5. AlexC

    AlexC Registered Member

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    One other option to add is to boot from a Linux live CD (Ubuntu, for instance), and go straight to your bank website to perform those tasks.
     
  6. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    Does it have a browser built in to the live cd?
     
  7. AlexC

    AlexC Registered Member

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  8. SweX

    SweX Registered Member

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    Why bother with a Live CD, if your PC is clean then you got no keylogger to worry about. Just use a clean browser and visit your Bank using HTTPS and you're fine. :)

    Edit: and as mentioned before, if keyloggers is your main concern then you can use anti-keylogger software.
     
  9. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    Thanks for tips. I am going to try the Linux cd just for fun.
     
  10. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    By the way, what about running in Safe Mode. Would keyloggers be able to run in Safe Mode?
     
  11. luciddream

    luciddream Registered Member

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    If I were on Win7, I would be using the integrated Windows Firewall, I can tell you that much. It was in fact one of the few things I really liked about the OS, contrary to what I'd heard about it going in I really liked it.

    I can't think of a 3'rd party stand-alone FW that could do a better job against keyloggers. One with a HIPS, properly configured could help out, but not the FW itself any more than the one you have already. But it doesn't sound like you'd want/need a solution that robust. Instead I'd look at something like Zemana or Spyshelter, which focuses on what you're looking for and not as broad as a HIPS. The trade off being that they can be beaten and worked around easier than a full blown HIPS could be. They'll protect you against your dime-a-dozen keylogger, but don't expect it to tackle more shiesty banking malware/trojans and things of the sort. So it's a trade off of convenience/security you'll have to consider. If you feel it's worth the learning curve for the more robust solution, you may want to add something like Malware Defender to your already existing Windows 7 Firewall. That is likely what I would do on Win7... along with EMET mitigation techniques applied liberally, as much as my apps can handle without breaking them.
     
  12. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    I am starting to review Malware Defender. Is Malware Defender bad with false positives or interfering with legitimate programs? Would it and Avast 8 work together - or problems? BTW, I use Windows 7 x64. Not sure if Malware Defender works in 64
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  13. siketa

    siketa Registered Member

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    MD is only 32-bit.
     
  14. nine9s

    nine9s Registered Member

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    Any opinions on Trusteer Rapport? I can get it through my bank.

    Any problems with it? Good?
     
  15. TheQuest

    TheQuest Registered Member

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    Hi nines=9s
    Here Trusteer Rapport

    Take Care
    TheQuest :cool:
     
  16. crapbag

    crapbag Registered Member

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    Based on my own experience, yes it is.

    I've only recently been introduced to Linux but love it for doing a bit of throwaway surfing and for banking.

    I'm currently dual-booting but would feel safe enough with my minimal Windows setup to online bank if I had to.

    Personally I don't enjoy messing around with third party firewalls. I usually end up blocking something by accident. Ports and rules and things give me the heebie-jeebies. If you have the time and patience maybe play around with with Outpost or OA or something. Guess you get a bunch of HIPS stuff with those too. Might just slow you down.

    I would be gobsmacked if the software you're already using doesn't scan for keyloggers anyway.

    I have used Zemana and Keyscrambler in the past witout problems. The latter didn't block keyloggers, just encrypted your typing.

    Have fun :)
     
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