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I thought my computer security awareness was good enough... evidently not

The other day I had an online conversation with a friend, and something she said reminded me of the words to a song I like. I wanted to share these words with her so I googled for the song and found it on several sites. I went over them to see if they matched my memory of it, then sent her the link to one of those pages. She quickly reported that it contained a trojan. That night, she ended up turning her drives inside out to catch it and ensure beyond any reasonable doubt that she was clean. An awful lot of work and hassle on my account.

Now, to the best of my knowledge, I am safe from the vast and overwhelming majority of the crap that people pull on websites by the simple expedient of not using Internet Explorer, Outlook Express or, on computers that I fully own and control, Windows. I also don't open strange attachments or allow myself to be taken in by emails purporting to be from Paypal or eBay. Indeed I've been feeling so safe lately that I haven't really kept up to date with the sort of methods malware writers use to spread their crap. So I had no idea that lyric sites were a vector for these things.
Clearly this will not do. As long as I'm ignorant about these things, I will cause people like my friend to be infected by sending her links that carry malware, and I may turn out to be less safe from other kinds of attack that using Opera for web browsing and linux as my OS of choice doesn't protect me from. I may not have time to get informed, but I have less time to get infected.
What else should I watch out for?


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 28, 2004 9:34 PM.

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