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Meltdown & Spectre Simplified

Meltdown & Spectre cybersecurity vulnerabilities

Meltdown & Spectre

So, 2018 has started with dis­closure of two huge cyber­se­curity vul­ner­ab­il­ities, called “Meltdown” and “Spectre”. These are not like most of the “exploits” that hackers use. They affect almost all modern com­puters.

Sites like MeltdownAttack.com and Defiant.com (pre­vi­ously “Word­Fence”) have covered the tech details well. So, here’s a sim­plified summary of what non-techies need to know.

Why You Should Care About Meltdown & Spectre

Most vul­ner­ab­il­ities affect software. Meltdown and Spectre affect CPUs — the core com­puter chips — mostly those built by Intel since 1995. So they don’t just affect PCs, or Windows, or Macs, or Linux. They affect com­puters, regardless of what software or oper­ating systems you use. In short — yes, this affects your computer(s) and phone(s).Read the rest

It’s All About Trust — Increasing Sales With SSL Security

SSL security trust mark“Trust me.” That’s the most vital message any website can convey. Without trust, vis­itors just leave.

However, most folks expect to be trusted, even when they’re wary about trusting others. Whilst that’s fine for dealing with folks in person, web­sites need to plan to build trust. We do that by providing quality content, good service — and “trust marks” like testi­mo­nials, “About” pages, Privacy Policies and other reas­sur­ances.

Of course, search engines want to promote quality, trust­worthy sites, so many of these reas­sur­ances can be good for SEO, too. So online, trust doesn’t just enable sales — it act­ively increases sales.

…and Google just changed the game.

Google’s Great SSL Plan

So, as you may know, Google uses hun­dreds of signals to assess the quality and trust­wor­thiness of web­sites.… Read the rest

Anti-Malware Solutions — 5 Vital Elements

Anti-malware solutions“Malware” covers a huge range of threats including viruses, spyware, ransomware and more. So, anti-malware solu­tions must defend on several fronts. Many include anti-spam and firewall solu­tions too, as these block common malware sources.

Some oper­ating systems are more secure than others, but nothing can be 100% secure. Malware is built to work around any pre­dictable default pro­tec­tions. So, whilst it’s worth keeping built-in anti-malware up to date, you’ll need more.

Essential Anti-Malware Components

So, what fea­tures should you look for in your anti-malware solution? Well, there are five that no system should be without.

1. Anti-Virus

The most obvious requirement is an effective, up-to-date anti-virus system. These mainly handle:

  • Viruses – which need human inter­action to spread
  • Worms – which self-rep­licate.
Read the rest

Password Security Made Simple

Password securityPassword security is the first — and often weakest — line of defence against cyber-attacks. Unfor­tu­nately, pass­words are the cyber­se­curity measure we all love to hate.

Techies take a lot of flak for imple­menting password security, but we didn’t invent it. Call them pass­words, PINs, keys or whatever you like — they all work the same way: a pattern grants access to a restricted resource. As such, password security measures have existed throughout history and will be around in some form for a while yet.

That said, pass­words have never been as common as they are today — and cracking them was far harder without com­puters. These days, weak pass­words only create a false sense of security. So, we all need to know how to use pass­words effect­ively.… Read the rest

Cybersecurity Basics

Basic CybersecurityNo-one can afford to ignore basic cyber­se­curity. With ransomware on the rise, it is more important than ever.

This will be the first in a series of art­icles about ways to keep the people and data you care about safe online. Among the things I plan to cover are:

  1. Why Bother With Cyber­se­curity? (this article)
  2. Password Security Made Simple
  3. Anti-Malware Solu­tions — 5 Vital Ele­ments
  4. Trust — Increasing Sales With SSL Security

…and more. I may write a bit about Website Security too, though BestVPN’s Blogger’s Guide To Word­Press Security has already covered that well.

So, with that said, let’s deal with the first question that far too many people ask…

Why Bother With Cybersecurity?

Well, the obvious answer is, “Cyber­se­curity pro­tects the people and things we care about”.… Read the rest