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224

IMPORTANT: this is based on data I got from your link, but the server might implement some protection. For example, once it has sent its "silver bullet" against a victim, it might answer with a faked "silver bullet" to the same request, so that anyone investigating is led astray. I have tried sending a fake parameter of cHVwcGFtZWxv to see whether it ...


177

It is not. This is a FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) campaign by GMX because they want to display their ads. There is absolutely no security risk from the mentioned ad blockers. They added some crapware to the list to make it look more legitimate. Of course such campaigns are very unusual, especially from such a big and well known company like GMX. ...


83

Update After thinking it over, I have to agree with the other answers in that, despite the fact that it CAN access your data, Adblock is more likely to protect your privacy than invade it. The real risk are malicious ads that prompt you to install software on your computer. Adblock prevents these. Below is the original, cautionary answer: Yes, it totally ...


53

It seems like the spammer got your personal information including your password through a security breach somewhere. Why did they use your password instead of your name? I would say it was an honest mistake on their side. They just mixed up the fields when designing the spam mail. When you are still using the password somewhere, you should change it ASAP. ...


48

At every place I have worked (as a contract developer) developers are given local admin rights on their desktops. The reasons are: 1) Developers toolsets are often updated very regularly. Graphics libraries, code helpers, visual studio updates; they end up having updates coming out almost weekly that need to be installed. Desktop support usually gets ...


42

This really comes down to an issue of trust. It is true that today, the AdBlock extension is safe. We know that it will not steal your data, even though—as the other answers point out—it has the technical ability to do so. However, Chrome extensions are silently and automatically updated. Do you trust that the developer of the AdBlock ...


36

All software is a security risk, but in this case their claim is misleading. Just like all advice is potentially bad and and all transactions are potentially fraudulent. "Risk" just means your security isn't guarenteed, with is true in 100% of cases. But in the case of AdBlock Plus, the software is well-understood and developed by a team that has a track ...


25

As the answer by phillipp stated, there is a good chance they got your password from some form of security breach. I doubt that they would have obtained that through Paypal's system. It could have happened in one of the following ways, to name a few (with tips on how to protect yourself from each one). At some point you could have accessed a fake PayPal ...


23

It's called knowledge-based authentication, and it's used to authenticate the remote server. Common authentication tokens are words and pictures. One point I would make is that it's a bad idea to give out the authentication token only after being given a non-secret piece of information such as a username. An attacker could target a single user by simply ...


22

As Rook pointed out, security theatre is a big part of how consumer perception is exploited to ensure that customers believe that something is safe, without the vendor having to go through all that complicated hassle with actual security. The TSA is a great example, but there are many others: Extended Verification on SSL certificates are largely theatre, ...


21

SiteKey is the feature name that many banks call it and should be able to be searched for under that name. It adds minimal if any security. Anything that your server can present to the user, a man in the middle can act as if they were the client and get the same information. SiteKey (which is likely what your bank calls it) is not secure and doesn't add ...


20

The answer depends upon what kind of browser you are using, so I'll break it down. Mobile browsers. You can't trust anything you see. Sorry. Life on a small screen sucks. That's just the way it is. (Did you want an explanation why? Any web page can go full-screen, using mobile-specific tricks like scrolling the page down so that the address bar is not ...


19

This partly depends on the kind of software the dev team is expected to develop. Some types of software are easier to develop without administrative rights than others. For example, you can do a fair amount of web-based Java development using the likes of Eclipse with Maven artifacts, all installed locally (and typically tested on port 8080), without ...


19

Just an observation - I tend to promote ad blockers especially for my less savvy friends and associates - precisely because it reduces security threats. How? Because much of the most malicious content on the web comes in the form of a misleading advertisement like "click here to make your pc faster"... These largely disappear with an ad blocker.


16

This type of attack is called "Vishing". I don't think it's very common, but it's not unheard of. However, mostly its automated responses on bogus numbers, manual vishing I have to think is even less common. It sounds like the attacker was either hoping to get lucky, or it was a targeted attack - not really enough information here to tell. It could be ...


14

To answer your specific question, .local has already been reserved by ICANN as an internal gTLD. Please see section 2.2.1.2.1 "Reserved Names" in the ICANN Applicant Guidebook. The full list of reserved gTLDs are: AFRINIC IANA-SERVERS NRO ALAC ICANN RFC-EDITOR APNIC IESG RIPE ARIN IETF ROOT-SERVERS ASO INTERNIC RSSAC CCNSO INVALID ...


13

I am assuming that the bank wants to protect its customers from phishing. (Not its employees; that's a different problem, and if you want to know about that, you should ask that one separately in a different question.) The bank should take several steps: Avoid emailing out links to the site. Go clobber the marketing team and get them to quit doing that. ...


12

Security seals are used on phishing sites, and our tax dollars fund the TSA. Whether we like it or not, "Security Theater" rules us all.


12

Answer: Yeah. It's possible. Re-install OSX and then change all her passwords. She got phished. IT Services is correct here. Prevention: To prevent this from happening in the future make sure she understands the importance of updates, and how to spot and avoid phishing scams. How it Happened: A lot of attackers will use shortened URLs or legitimate ...


11

I don't rate their security particularly high; but they are more than just security theater. They potentially can make the job of the attacker more difficult and the job of a security forensic experts tracking down anomolies easier. Let's say there is no security image/phrase or equivalent. Then an man-in-the-middle attacker can construct a fake version ...


11

Theoretically speaking: maybe, at the moment you just have a possibility and no actual proof. (Just IP addresses aren't enough they are circumstantial, the police will need to at least find proof on his computer (which in most cases is also, at most, considered circumstantial)) Realistically: Not a chance. It's Ghana, the chance you will get anything done ...


11

Great question! As it happens, I can present experimental data on this question -- and the data is fascinating. (I noticed that some of the answers contain speculation from first principles about how much security these security images offer. However, the data turns out to have some surprises for all of us!) Experimental methodology. "Security images" ...


11

Look up their DNS record with whois, and contact their listed admin. Also, contact their hosting provider.


10

Phishing "red flags": Any un-solicited communication regarding any account you have. Certainly, this criteria is the easiest one to have a false-positive hit on, and probably shouldn't be the only clue you act on, but it's also your first clue. Any un-solicited communication regarding any account you don't have. There's definitely something wrong, if ...


9

SiteKey is not an effective defense against phishing. In principle, it could be helpful for a tiny population of expert users who are very conscientious about examining the image and know how web security works, but those users are rare. However, a mechanism like this really needs to help protect average users, not just computer security experts. And, for ...


9

When compromised you should re-install your machine completely. There is no way of knowing for sure that nothing else has been compromised.


9

Adblock (as other extensions and, for that matter, browser developers) has the technical ability to get a lot of your data, and you have all the risks commonly associated with running third-party applications - namely, that the vendor can be malicious, and there may be bugs in their software that break your security. That being said, I'd consider AdBlock as ...


8

I believe it is legitimate. If you visit paypal.com, switch to the "Germany - Deutsch" site and check out the links on the resulting site, you can see that, for example, the "Sicherheit" (Google translate as "Security") link points to https://www.paypal-deutschland.de/sicherheit/. Of course, one could argue that this means very little. If in doubt, ...


7

Get used to these. You will get them regularly. A lot of overpriced registrars make a living going around sending out e-mails and even snail mail like this to try to get website owners to pay for services from them. The services are generally legitimate but overpriced and often sent prior to actually being needed. They are correct that you must keep your ...


7

First things first: you must (I insist, must) wipe out your hard disk and reinstall from scratch. Any half-witted attacker or mere virus which could gain root access on a system will certainly not stop after adding a folder. It is highly probable that one or several backdoors have been installed, in various system utilities and/or the kernel itself, in ways ...



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