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Andy Horbury | 29 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

Nick D'Aloisio hit the headlines recently by selling his Summly app to Yahoo for an estimated £18 million, which is not bad at all when you consider he is still a teenager.

So now you are hoping to emulate him. Fine. But first, although this may be stating the blindingly obvious, you need an idea. Let me rephrase that: you need a very good idea. But that doesn’t mean it’s just a very good idea to you. Other people need to think so, too, and not just your best mates, your parents, or devoted partner. I mean people you don’t know who would be willing to fork out their money for your app only after you’d convinced them it was worth every penny and a bit more. That, after all, is the ultimate test of anyone’s sincerity when it comes to doing business.

They do like it and would buy it? Great. But have you...

Andy Horbury | 25 Jul 2013 | 1 comment

There are deep and disturbing sides to the Internet where businesses should fear to tread, if they want to keep themselves safe. So called ‘dark’ search engines, for example, certainly need to be approached with extreme caution.

Take Shodan, a search engine that navigates the Internet's back channels. It's akin to a ‘dark’ Google, helping hackers to find out the servers, webcams, printers, routers, systems, networks etc… that are vulnerable to tampering.

Shodan has been designed to help users track down certain types of software and hardware, determine which applications are most popular, identify anonymous FTP servers, or investigate new vulnerabilities and what hosts they could infect. All good stuff and useful to know. But Shodan also serves as a window into millions of unsecured online connections; and you definitely wouldn’t want those connections to be yours. It...

Brook R. Chelmo | 24 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

As you search, and surf online; from time to time you may well come across a warning from your browser saying the site contains malware or perhaps that the connection is untrusted.  A recent study from UC Berkeley and Google, called Alice in Warningland, indicates that many of us choose to ignore these warnings on a daily basis. So if you do encounter these warnings what should you do?  What do they mean?  Let me guide you quickly through these and give some solid advice for staying safe online. 

 

The Website Ahead Contains Malware (Chrome); Reported Attack Page (Firefox)

Response:  STOP! Do Not Proceed!

What this means:  The site or individual page has been infected with Malware. Malware is malicious software that can do a variety of things most of them bad so you...

Jeannie Warner | 22 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

Videos are hot these days. People are posting home-made videos of everything from their cats to romantic rants or new songs. Some clever companies are starting to use customer video feedback for social outreach as well, hooking into this new viral craze. Sports fans like me have seen the competitions for the best customer-made commercial on TV, and looked up our favorites on YouTube.  

However, with all these videos being created, it creates a new vector for virii or other malware to be downloaded when people view the clips. It's clear that videos and testimonials are important to the future of marketing and social media, so what remains is a clear need to create, upload, and share videos more securely.

Buzztala, one of Symantec's partners, has created a Social Video Platform to work with businesses that want to let customers upload videos, testimonials, and other social networking content. Buzztala is running SSL on their hosting platform, and adds the...

Andy Horbury | 18 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

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We recently published Symantec’s Website Security Threat Report which contains a huge amount of information on the security threat landscape. In this series of blog posts we will focus on topics such as the re-emergence of phishing, the rise of malware and what you need to be aware of to keep your work and personal life secure.

Starting with Phishing…Over the past few years there has been a slight change to the type of phishing attacks we’ve seen. As sites such as Facebook and Twitter have grown in popularity, they have drawn the attention of the cybercriminal fraternity and we’ve seen a significant increase in spam and phishing...

Brook R. Chelmo | 16 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

In the sales world when we look at the sales cycle we tend to see everything as a funnel.  It has a wide open mouth at the top with narrower pipe at the end representing our sales.  As a business leader you look at each portion of the sales process to evaluate your success at each point to maximize the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.  Customer conversion rates are highly important.  Abandoned shopping carts are worrisome.  The checkout process for online retail sales is critical.  So how can you use security technology to drive customer conversion?  How can you widen the portion of the sales “funnel” at the checkout process and drive more sales?

At Symantec we have two very strong options you can leverage.

  1. Leverage the power of the Norton Secured Seal, the most trusted seal on the web.  Take a look at this interesting...
Andy Horbury | 16 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

I hope you read my last post on the bad advice that some sites give their users. As a follow up, I thought it would be useful to highlight what some of the errors you might see online actually mean, and what is happening in the background to keep you safe and secure.

First of all let me explain what happens with the some of the security warnings you might see in your web browser when an SSL certificate has expired. When you visit a site and initiate a secure session (such as logging into your webmail), the server hosting that site presents your browser with an SSL certificate to verify its identity. This certificate contains different kinds of identity information, including the URL of the website; all of this information has been verified by a third party Certificate Authority (such as Symantec) that your browser trusts. By checking that the address in the certificate matches the address of the website,...

Andy Horbury | 03 Jul 2013 | 0 comments

A friend of mine called me last week (I’m the de facto security/IT guy in my circle of friends) her question was what to do when faced by the message below as it was something she’d not seen before. The warning message as you can see below says that the site may no longer be secure because of an expired SSL certificate.

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My immediate answer was that under no circumstances should she ever proceed. If in doubt go to another site, visit their bricks and mortar address, try calling or emailing the store. But do not use the website. The answer I got back from my friend was quite surprising……after enquiring what the issue was via Twitter, she was told by a representative of the site “This warning is nothing to worry about”. After sitting down to consider this I realised what horrendous advice this...

Brook R. Chelmo | 28 Jun 2013 | 0 comments

Migrating certificates during a major key size migration can be difficult at best. I’m going to give you some background, share a great video we have produced, as well as share seven steps to aid in this migration.

Background - Key Sizes Change with Time

Since the RSA algorithm was first publically described in 1977 by Ron Rivest, Adi Shamir, and Len Adleman, 17 key sizes have been factored (hacked).  So far the highest key size that was factored was RSA 768-bit in 2009.  As cloud computing grows so does the threat that RSA 1024-bit will be factored as well. 

Industry Response – Bring 1024-bit Certificate to End-of-Life

In order to be proactive, Certification Authorities (CAs) have been tasked to bring these certificates to end-of-life by the end of 2013.  An end date of December 31, 2013 was listed by...

Brook R. Chelmo | 21 Jun 2013 | 0 comments

Imaging installing a new deadbolt on your backdoor and after all the measuring, drilling, sizing, and installation you stand back to admire your work only to notice the lock was installed backwards.   The device implemented to keep people out will now let them in.  As noted by several university researchers, including Dan Boneh of Stanford University at RSA13, this is the same issue developers are facing when they poorly implement SSL/TLS security within their mobile applications.  The flaw is not in the security technology but in its implementation.

It is natural to assume that I don’t need to sell you on the fact that you need to have all aspects of your information security program in line without any loop holes.  Implementing SSL within non-browser apps has been laid out to make it clear and easy for any user or developer within this white paper.  A...