About five years ago I installed the family version of Symantec's Norton Internet Security software on one of my PCs, rendering the machine unusable. Not only couldn't I get any access to the Internet, it was impossible to uninstall the program. I ended up having to reinstall the operating system and all my applications--except Norton Internet Security. At the time I said I would never again install a Symantec security program on any PC, but about a year ago I bought a PC that came with 90 days of Norton 360, and the program won me over. When … Read more
Editor's note: Last week's story on spyware as a form of domestic abuse ('Do you know your hacker?') generated much response, including very personal stories from women whose lives were at one point dominated by the kind of controlling abuse described last week. Because of the deep personal, as well as technological, impact on these users' lives, one story is featured here today. Scroll below for the editor's response or click to jump ahead.
Published by Elissa; Michigan, U.S.
Shortly after a nasty custody battle erupted with my network-hobbyist ex-husband, my once efficiently reliable technological life … Read more
It's tempting to jam criminal hackers into a safe, distant profile. To assume the creep helping themselves to your e-mail, bank account, and surf history is a smug, slaphappy youth, or conniving foreign national. But what if you discovered that the one spying on your life was someone much, much closer?
How close? Like a parent, spouse, roommate, or significant other.
This is the topic of today's meeting in Washington. The Anti-Spyware Coalition gathered with representatives from McAfee and Google, to discuss the extent to which spyware abuse also constitutes domestic abuse.
Anna Stepanov, the Anti-Spyware program manager … Read more
Published by William; Sydney, Australia
In our house, we used to share a computer. I had Spybot - Search & Destroy and Norton Antivirus installed on it, and I became the scanning boss since my parents barely knew how to click a mouse. After about a year, I discovered "DriveCleaner" in the program manager window. I tried uninstalling it, got an error, then saw the progress bar roll backward fairly fast. At least these malware people have a sense of humor.
But then: My computer was exceedingly slow and gave me constant pop-up problems. Stress session. I tried … Read more
Best Buy is warning customers who purchased its Insignia 10.4-inch Digital Picture Frames that their device may be harboring a virus, according an advisory posted on its Web site over the weekend.
Insignia digital frames, with model number NS-DPF10A, may be infected with the virus, Best Buy states in its posting. The company is asking users to contact its Insignia customer care number, 877-467-4289, to determine whether their digital picture frame is infected and how to troubleshoot the virus that can travel through the USB cord and infect a user's PC.
Best Buy learned of … Read more
Published by Al, Port Alberni, Canada
I'm a 57-year-old retired truck driver with three stepdaughters, two of whom don't think the old man knows a thing about computers. Little do they know that I have a BA in computer science and can run circles around all of their friends. One time, the oldest girl's computer got so clogged up it would freeze, and the only way out was to hard-boot it. I cleaned it up, but there was so much damage done to the OS that I had to reformat the drive and do a fresh install … Read more
I'll be the first to admit that the appearance of an ominously blue, ominously blank screen followed by an instant shut-down smacks of malware. Well, it smacks of something, and file-eating, process-disrupting intruders are the most likely cause.
They're also the most convenient excuse for explaining away perplexing computer abnormality. As Sara from Southend, U.K., reminds us, however, that might not be exactly the case.
Complete your scans, by all means, but if nothing suspicious turns up, start looking at your hardware, particularly if it's a few years old. Dust, crumbs, and other crud pile up, … Read more
With a new year comes new computers, and that means new security problems. Viruses, spyware, rootkits, hackers--a fresh machine can be susceptible to the most insidious of plots. Lucky for you, here in the CNET Download.com defense bunker, we've devised a list of essential and free top-rated security programs to protect the honor of your computer and ensure that your sanity will last longer than your resolutions.
What do you do when the spyware you're trying to pluck free from a hard drive is smarter than it looks? If you're most people, something drastic involving extra money, time, or hired professionals. If you're Ravi, something else entirely.
Find out the trick up Ravi's sleeve in this week's Spyware Horror Story.