Thursday, November 24, 2011

Christmas is coming. You can get great gifts at Zazzle

...And the best part is, if you can't find the T-Shirt, mousepad, iPad skin, etc. that you want you can even design your own!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What kinds of WiFi Networks Are People Using

This video is the result of trying to answer my own curiosity about what kinds of WiFi networks are people actually using out there in the real world?

I decided that I wanted to know what other folks in my area were doing in the wireless space.

On the train ride home from this year's SecTor Security Conference this year I did a little survey.
This is actually the second time I've done this, the first was a year ago, on my way home from the November TASK meeting. but I never posted results of that.. I started to write a blog post but then scrapped it.
Anyway, I was curious... I pulled out my netbook and fired up airodump-ng for a little war-driving (war-training?).

Please note, I did not attempt to connect to any of the networks I found. This was just a listening exercise to see who was out there. I chose the program airodump-ng specifically because I know it does not attempt to communicate with the Access Point, it just logs who was sending as it sees it. I also did not use it, like Google, to capture and record any transmitted payload data. I was not interested in who was connected, or what they were doing, just how the APs were configured.

When I got home I started compiling the data that I collected into a spreadsheet so that I could make some sense of it.

Note: this wireless survey only covered a small area, the stretch along the train tracks (and major highway) between downtown Toronto's Union Station, and the Whitby station to the east, about a 1 hour train ride.

Monday, November 14, 2011

ZoneAlarm Making Some Hefty Claims

I updated ZoneAlarm on one of my PCs today, and was greeted by this screen making some of the grandest claims I've ever seen from a computer security product.

Claim #1 isn't so bad. "Your computer is protected against hackers" I should hope that the firewall provides some degree of protection. ...of course, just like a condom, the firewall doesn't provide 100% effectiveness in that protection, but it does provide protection.

The second and third claims with their absolute statements are misleading. "Your Web browsing is safe from phishing" and "Your identity and data are safe from theft and loss".

Let's be realistic folks. Nothing is going to make you absolutely safe from these things. No phishing filter, no matter how good it is is going to stop you from going to every phishing site ever conceived. Nothing can provide absolute protection from identity and/or data theft. No matter how many ways they try to protct you, somone will think of a different way to get the info from you.

Since ZA does not provide a backup solution, I can't see how it even attempts to protect you from data loss.
Likewise, CheckPoint (the makers of ZA) isn't in the counselling business, they can't do much about your loss of identity. If you don't know who you are anymore I doubt there is much they can do to help.  :)

All that said, I still think ZA is one of the best software firewalls for Windows out there.  It is light-years beyond the built-in "firewall"....and it's free!