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Plugins and Widgets and Applets, Oh My

By Dan Hadaway | Wednesday, March 31, 2010 - Leave a Comment

Boy do we need to be sensitive to third party applications!  This is true not only as we use our browser at work, but also when we use Facebook or Myspace or any of the myriad of social media sites at home.

Third party applications may enhance our user experience, or they may be written by a bad guy to enhance the bad guy’s user experience!   Because we work in a financial institution, we already understand the risk of malicious software.  Plugins, widgets, and applets can be viruses, trojans or spyware.  But the bad guys are attacking us at home too!

  • As home users, we need to become experts in the use of our anti-virus software.   Let’s roll  up our sleeves and learn it.  If a twelve-year-old can learn how to design a virus, we can learn how to keep our own malware prevention systems up to date.
  • We need to be sensitive to what third party applications actually do.  Even the “good guys” have reasons to spend hours and hours writing software.  Many times the reason is to collect information about our profile and/or our activities while on-line.  This could be used to market to us or to prevent us from getting certain information . . . we usually don’t know.  Because of this, try to find out what information the third party application can access.
  • Or just don’t install it.  Do we really need to add to the list of psychotronic movies from the 1970s?

Click here for more information about User Awareness Training.

 

Infotex Team

Intended Use:

The purpose of Vigilize is to respond to ISO’s complaints that users never read ISO’s “ongoing security awareness training reminders.”  Our tweets are designed to be copied into the subject line of your awareness reminder, with the language on these pages put into the body.  The goal is that the user will have to read the subject line to know to delete the message, and if they understand the subject line the reminder is communicated.  If not, they will go into the message and read the reminder.

Feel free to use Vigilize in your own Security Awareness Program.  Let us know if you have any ideas, suggested tweets, or ways to improve this FREE service.

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