Spectre and Meltdown Exploits – How are you affected?

Much has been made in the press around the Spectre and Meltdown bugs specific to the CPU in the past week. There is quite a bit of overblown sensationalist information floating around regarding these and other exploits, so we thought it important to briefly discuss how this may affect current and future PC purchases. These bugs are only viable under certain circumstances within specific environments.  To be clear, neither of these exploits are hardware flaws – they are exploits in attempts to read theoretically protected memory.  This does not mean that anyone can read your hard drive or other areas outside of…

The Dangers of Ransomware

The Dangers of Ransomware

Though there are multiple threats to personal and organizational data, the most recent disclosed attack reported by the United States news agencies related to an advanced ransomware attack.  Wong (2015) discussed the attack against Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, in which a ransomware infection encrypted a large numbers of important medical records, effectively freezing hospital operations until a ransom was paid.  While multiple attempts were made to circumvent the attack, the end result is that the medical center had to pay roughly $17,000 United States dollars in ransom to recover their data (Everett, 2016).  Ransomware is a type of malicious software…

Web Security and Password Best Practices

Time for a password refresh! Within the past two weeks, over 1 million decrypted passwords for some of the most popular mail and social media sites have been placed for sale on the Deep Web.  What this means for you is that there is a chance that your information is unknowingly available for sale.  A few of the sites involved in this data sale include gMail, Yahoo, LinkedIn, Tumblr, and Last.FM. An Australian security researcher has instituted a Website to allow you to see if any of your eMail accounts or usernames have been involved in a breach incident.  This…