Monday, 7 October 2013


Goodbye to XP

With the end of Microsoft support for Windows XP, it is the time to move. There are lots of reasons to Upgrade and it would be best to move to windows 7 or 8, hardware permitting.

Here are just 3 reasons 

Pt. 1 Security.

With all the patches over the 12 years of windows Xp, Windows 7 /8 have those all in place now and also enhanced the security of its Operating systems. The threats today are very different to what Windows Xp had to contend with, and the present threats are very complex and the people are now very different (hackers/thieves/companies/governments) are more developed and well equipped to exploit WinXP.

Pt. 2. Hardware.

The time has passed and 12 years on the technology like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, WI Max, mobile broadband. USB 2.0 and 3.0. Windows Xp does not have the features people today expect and used today. The user experience is important and windows 7 and 8 have help to improve it for the users including touch screen and faster processors and that is for laptops to servers.

Pt. 3. People and Places.

In the years since the introduction of windows XP people and places have progressed to using windows 7 or 8 as the main OS for the personal computers. So when going to work and finding their company Operating System is 12 yr. old and in some cases older than their kids and grandkids the morale of a work force is bound to be affected and reduce productivity and compatibility with more recent software issues.  Also the windows Xp will not have the same features to be able to work with more recent browsers like Internet Explorer 10 or Google chrome which are designed to help enhance the user experience.


So long and thanks for the experience.
Windows Xp was in its time a very good and stable operating system, but like all of us we age and the experience and knowledge we pass down to our kids to in some places kids have never used Windows Xp so did not have the privilege and pleasure, including the odd nightmare of using windows Xp.

So let us say a fond farewell to an old friend. 

Goodbye Windows Xp

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Telephone Scams

Would you be will to let anyone nosey around your computer and see all your files and change setting to your systems.

it is a common scam where you receive a call from someone claiming to be from Microsoft or a technical  support company. They say they have been notified by your Internet Service Provider stating you have a number of viruses or problems with you system, they ask you to log onto a page so you can let them take control of your PC or server. At this point you now have given over access to them to do what they want to your computer or network.
The main operating system they deal with is Microsoft windows and they are not too up to date as to start with Linux or Mac OS.

Once they have control they have you caught if u should it down your PC or network can be locked out to you or they can install a ransom ware program that will require you to make a payment  to release your PC.

Here are a few things to help you.

1.       Microsoft or Internet Service Provider will not call you with a problem to your PC. As they do not monitor PCs or networks. The only thing is they monitor your download limit if you have one.

2.       Ask who is you broadband supplier as it is not usual for broadband providers to call   about problems with PCs.
It will be OK to call your broadband provider about any calls you had received from them.

3.       DO NOT follow their instructions or let them access your systems.

4.       Always ask questions about what information they have on you.


They use remote access software, which a lot of legitimate technical support companies 
use everyday to repair and update networks and PCs.
This telephone scam is usually from the criminal scammer looking to extort money or information from the victim.

What I did to the scammers is to pretend to be so stupid and play along with them and as I progress through I ask more stupid questions and eventually have them so mad they normally hang up. 

Here is a clip which i found on the Youtube site of a savvy user messing with the scammers.     

This clips is courtesy of YouTube and thanks the Creator of the video. there are many more on the site.

So my final thoughts are if you receive a call claiming to be technical support from a computer company that you have not contacted it is probably a scammer call. so just HANG UP on them.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Threats for 2013
City of culture
With the year of 2013 being an important year to  this Legenderry city, it will be a year for businesses to be vigilant in their IT security and awareness of scammers and malicious attacks on companies IT systems and websites either to make money from scams and threats to companies.
Don’t let me scare you but it is like flying a fly to the world, that Legenderry is open to attacks from scammers and other forms of attacks, but if you are not prepared to be security aware you are FARE GAME to attack.

You and me and small businesses to multinationals, government departments and various organisations could be the targets for any Malware or other forms of attack on websites or systems. The criminal scammers will mainly target small and medium businesses due to being unaware of threats and have little education in information security and also naivety in anti virus will make it easier for them. 

Social engineering
Social engineering explained by Sophos 

Usually an email with link and attachment that could lure you into clicking on it and then the virus will be downloaded.

Malware which is software designed to corrupt or open systems to further attacked including stealing of data and vital information can be delivered by email and unwittingly staff could open them and release the malware on to company systems.

Dedicated Denial of Services

These are attacks on websites for large amounts of request for information ie, web page requests for millions of bot nets which overload the web page and causes it to crash. Possible target's could be Derry City Council site and the city of culture site and various others that could highlight the city.  

This type of attack is usually because of an issue with the company or government and carried out by crusaders hackers or military hackers.

Scams including Ransom ware

This can vary from fake sites looking to gather information for unethical mailing or business offer none existent services, or ransom ware is software downloaded to lock your device until you make a payment.   

Telephone Scammer
Contacting potential victims with a story about issues with their PC and getting them to log on and going to a site so that the scammer can access the victims PC to possibly getting their banking information.           

Keep up with the threats

Anti-virus is not the be all and end all of data security. 
The concept of Defence in Depth is securing your systems from the inside outwards to firewalls on the network and Internet facing end of you systems, also securing your desktops and Hard drives.

Updates of security software and other applications also patches for Operating Systems but if not required don’t up date.

Making the staff and management aware of threats and training in security awareness and policies is also an important factor too.
Once again I do hope all businesses in this Legenderry city prosper in the year of culture.