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Posts Tagged ‘security’
August 31st, 2015

How to keep your Facebook business page secure

Managing the security of your Facebook business page is important to maintain a good reputation.

Nowadays we can hardly imagine a successful business functioning without digital marketing. When we say digital marketing Facebook comes to mind immediately. The most popular social platform with more than one billion users all over the world is a massive communication platform not only for the individuals, but also for brands and their consumers.

Community managers update Facebook for their company

Everyone working with your company Facebook page should know how to keep it protected.

Freelancers, owners of small local businesses, and large corporations; all of them use Facebook to promote their products and talk with their customers. In this blog post we will show you how to keep your Facebook page safe from the bad guys.

Manage the managers

Even if you are a small business, managing all your social media efforts by yourself can be difficult. Don’t try to control everything, it’s impossible and you will end up with micromanagement overload with unnecessary work. Instead, control the roles of your co-workers and educate them!

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August 27th, 2015

Alabama State University switches to security in the cloud

Networks are relentlessly attacked by online threats. Organizations need quality security products to keep their network secure.

When Jothan Virgil, an IT Administrator at Alabama State University located in Montgomery, Alabama, got an email announcing the new, free Avast for Business product, he did his research and signed up.

Alabama State University

image via swac.org

Virgil knows that a good antivirus product is the most important part of protecting a network and was using Avast Endpoint Protection before switching. ”The new cloudbased solution is easier to manage.” Avast for Business lets Virgil see his entire network anywhere, anytime making his job easier.

Alabama State has a very large network managed by multiple IT professionals, with over 1,000 faculty and staff members and more than 5,600 students. Avast for Business now protects all of them from one console.

“Avast for Business is so easy to deploy and monitor, it’s made the administration of our network much smoother.” System notifications tell Virgil exactly which machines are being hit with viruses or malware.

And it’s not just easy. It’s also free. Avast for Business created a savings that Virgil can use somewhere else. He’s certain the savings will go to good use in their growing IT environment.


 

Avast for Business can save your non-profit, company, or school money and time. Sign up on the Avast website.

August 14th, 2015

10 ways to ensure your security while shopping online

That online shopping increases day by day is not news. If you are an average user, you are probably already aware of the normal precautions and have taken them yourself. Ease of use and convenience when browsing for different products or searching for the best prices has improved greatly. However, at the same time, online threats and frauds have also increased exponentially. Therefore, from time to time, all of us must review our behavior and think again if our habits are secure.

Follow a few simple tips to stay safe while shopping online

Follow a few simple tips to stay safe while shopping online

Best practices while online shopping

1. Use your own computer or mobile device when shopping. It seems obvious, but you cannot trust a computer that does not belong to you, even your best friend’s computer. It might not have appropriate protection and it could already be compromised by malware. So, always use your own device, install an anti-malware solution and before you start doing anything that involves your money, scan your network to discover if it is safe.

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July 23rd, 2015

Microsoft releases emergency Windows patch after discovery of critical security flaw

With the release of their newest operating system just days away, now is not the most convenient time for Microsoft to be facing and dealing with security bugs. However, two thirds of all 1.5 billion PCs operated by Windows across the globe were recently left vulnerable due to a security flaw found in nearly every version of Windows, including Windows 10 Insider Preview.

If you use Windows, the time to update is now!

If you use Windows, the time to update is now!

The flaw (MS15-078) lies within the Windows Adobe Type Manager Library and can be exploited by cybercriminals to hijack PCs and/or infect them with malware. Users can be attacked when they visit untrusted websites that contain malicious embedded OpenType fonts. Microsoft explains more about the threat in a security bulletin advisory:

An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of the affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

There are multiple ways an attacker could exploit this vulnerability, such as by convincing a user to open a specially crafted document, or by convincing a user to visit an untrusted webpage that contains embedded OpenType fonts. The update addresses the vulnerability by correcting how the Windows Adobe Type Manager Library handles OpenType fonts.

The flaw has been classified as critical, which is Microsoft’s highest measured level of threat. Anyone running Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and 8.1, Server 2008, Server 2012 and Windows RT are affected by the flaw. Microsoft’s online Security TechCenter includes a full list of affected software and additional vulnerability information.

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July 15th, 2015

One in 10 American mobile users is the target of mobile malware

Avast Antivirus detects and neutralizes malware

Threat analysts and malware researchers in the Avast Virus Lab detect and neutralize threats as soon as they appear.

The Avast Threat Report provides an overview of global threat activity.

 

Avast malware researchers and Avast customers work 24/7 to protect each other.

Avast protects 230 million people worldwide in more than 186 different countries — we are present in more countries than McDonalds and protect more people than any other antivirus security provider. We stream 250 micro updates a day that protect our users from attacks. This is made possible by the 230 million devices we protect that simultaneously act as de facto sensors. These sensors provide us with information about suspicious files to help detect and neutralize threats as soon as they appear. Once we identify a suspicious file on a single device, it is reported back to the Avast servers and all Avast users around the world are immediately protected. This is called our Community IQ – it not only lets us better protect our users but also gives us valuable insights into the current security landscape.

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July 14th, 2015

Do third-party app stores pose a threat to mobile security?

Android Malware

Malware detected on Android

Over time, we’ve noticed the presence of some fairly heated user debates disputing the necessity of security or antivirus apps for Android devices. This could have been sparked by our recent post which argues that you can’t always rely on the security of Google Play or because of the myth that antivirus companies create viruses to sell more software.

Certain security gurus claim that if users stick to downloading and purchasing apps using only the Google Play Store, nothing bad will happen to their devices. However, we found that this line of thinking is not 100% correct, as was demonstrated through the discovery of a rogue Dubsmash app or in the infamous case of apps on Google Play posing as games and infecting millions of users with adware. Despite these findings, there are some users who still feel that they’re safe whenever using Google Play. This feeling of false security could have negative consequences; for example, when your data or financial information is stolen or when you have to resort to resetting your device in order to cleanse it of malware.

So, we know we can’t rely on the Google Play Store all the time, but are third-party stores more secure? Of course not. In this case, how is it still possible that it’s not a problem to use third-party stores? First of all, it’s necessary to point out that there are certain legitimate and clean third-party stores, such as Amazon and FDroid. At the same time, there are tons of shady stores and even more black market .apk files promising to deliver you the latest features of a cracked app.

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June 19th, 2015

Hola, Hola VPN users, you may have been part of a botnet!

VPN service Hola, which has millions of users, recently came under fire for not being as up front with their users as they should have been. In the past weeks it has been revealed that Hola does the following:

  • allows Hola users to use each others’ bandwidth
  • sells their users’ bandwidth to their sister company Luminati (which recently helped facilitate a botnet attack)
  • and, according to Vectra research, Hola can install and run code and additional software on their users’ devices without their users’ knowledge.

If you are an Hola user or if you know someone who uses Hola, please make sure you/they are aware of this.

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June 18th, 2015

Samsung phones vulnerable to hacker attack via keyboard update

 

Samsung Swiftkey vulnerability puts Samsung devices at risk

600 million Samsung mobile devices are at risk. Image source: gadgets.ndtv.com

We rely on our apps. Everyday we use our favorite ones to check news, the weather for our next trip, and communicate with our loved ones. Some apps, especially the system ones, are continuously in use, even if they are not the foremost app on your screen. The keyboard is one of them.

Recently, a dangerous vulnerability was discovered in the most popular keyboardSwiftKey. If you have a Samsung S6, S5, and even a S4 running the stock operating system, you’re at risk. The app always checks for language updates, but this process is not performed in a secure way. If you’re connected with an open or public Wi-Fi, your phone is at risk of a very common and dangerous Man-in-the-middle attack. Your connection will be compromised and all the Internet traffic could be eavesdropped upon. That includes the passwords you’re typing in the very same keyboard, your financial information, everything.

To insure your security, you need to use a VPN when on Wi-Fi, since that’s when most updates are scheduled to occur. You probably already know what a VPN is and how it works. If not, you can find a lot of information in our blog. Our product, Avast SecureLine VPN, creates an encrypted tunnel for the inbound and outbound data of your Internet connection, blocking any possibility of a Man-in-the-middle attack.

But the story does not end here. If you use SwiftKey on an unsecured Wi-Fi, the attacker could also download malware into your phone or tablet. That’s a job for Avast Mobile Security & Antivirus (AMS). Some users think that we don’t need a security product for our phones. They also think that security companies exaggerate the need for a security app just to sell their products. AMS not only scans the installation process of apps but also checks the Internet sites you’re visiting and malicious behavior of any file in your device. You can install Avast Mobile Security & Antivirus on your Android device for free from the Google Play store.

NOTE: At the writing of this post, a patch for the vulnerability was provided to mobile network operators by Samsung. SwiftKey wrote on their blog, “This vulnerability is unrelated to and does not affect our SwiftKey consumer apps on Google Play and the Apple App Store.”

 

May 29th, 2015

Avast Data Drives New Analytics Engine

Did you know that Californians are obsessed with Selfie Sticks from Amazon.com? Or that people in Maine buy lots of coconut oil?

Thanks to Jumpshot, a marketing analytics company, you can find this information – as well as more useful information – by using the tools available at Jumpshot.com.

What may be most interesting to you is that Jumpshot is using Avast data to drive these unique insights. We provide Jumpshot with anonymized and aggregated data that we collect from scanning the 150 billion URLs our users visit each month. Using Jumpshot’s patent-pending algorithm, all of the personally identifiable information is removed from the data before it leaves Avast servers. Nothing can be used to identify or target individuals. Avast COO Ondřej Vlček explains the data stripping algorithm in an Avast forum topic.

Jumpshot infographic showing Amazon.com shopping cart values and the most popular products by state. Anonymized Avast browser data was used to create this information. Click here to see the full infographic.

Jumpshot infographic showing Amazon.com shopping cart values by state. Anonymized and aggregated Avast browser data was used to create this information. Click here to see the full infographic.

Data security, of course, is very important to us. We go to great lengths to keep our users safe, and have never shared any data that can be used to identify them. We never have and never will.

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May 21st, 2015

Avast Home Network Security is ideal for the self-employed

Don't let your router be the weakest link when it comes to protecting your home business.

Don’t let your router be the weakest link when it comes to protecting your home business.

For those of us who are self-employed and/or work from home, our houses are sacred spaces on both personal and professional levels. Although often overlooked, our routers hold the key to our productivity, as they provide the powerful and consistent network connection that we depend on in order to get our work done. Unfortunately, we often take these little guys for granted, and because of this, routers have become the weakest security point in many home and small business networks these days.

“Unsecured routers create an easy entry point for hackers to attack millions of American home networks,” said Vince Steckler, chief executive officer of Avast. “If a router is not properly secured, cybercriminals can easily gain access to an individual’s personal information, including financial information, user names and passwords, photos, and browsing history.”

 

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