A couple of weeks ago I wrote about setting up your smartphone so it could be made useless if it was stolen. Turns out there’s a controversy about it, at least according to CNN. While Apple provides a remote wipe facility easily (Find my iPhone), the Droid community has not followed suit, and some think it’s not an accident.
For your interest:
XKCD is an excellent source of wisdom on many modern issues. Highly recommended.
If you manage a grant, or if you are contemplating applying for one in the next couple of years, please contact me today to talk about how you could participate in a search for new software to help Wayne State faculty and staff manage research grants. Please send me an email with the subject line COEUS. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
This virus is taking the country by storm–and not in a good way. Here’s a long story on dealing with it:
Particularly note the existence of CryptoPrevent. This is not an actual endorsement (I’m not technically savvy enough to certify it) but some folks whose blogs I respect recommend it.
Better yet, don’t open attachments unless you’re absolutely certain what they are.
There’s a new, really evil virus floating around, and a couple of machines at Wayne State have caught it. It’s a new(ish) kind of attack called ‘ransomware’ (according to my buddies at the American Dialect Society it’s also occasionally spelled ‘ransomeware’). If you get it, it encrypts your files. Your data files. Then it prompts you for a credit card, and you have to pay to get your files back. If you don’t, after a set amount of time the encryption key is destroyed and you are entirely out of luck. The files are unrecoverable (unless you have the resources of the NSA 🙂 )
As I mentioned, several WSU machines were recently (last two days) infected with this piece of nastiness.
So, what can you do to protect yourself?
Don’t open attachments from people you are not expecting to get attachments from. This includes ‘people’ like UPS, FEDEX or Kinko’s, unless you know there is actually something that ought to be coming.
Make sure you have our free Symantec Antivirus suite on all your computers (get it at http://computing.wayne.edu/clearinghouse/index.php) and make sure it’s up to date.
Back up your files to a separate drive, and if you’re infected all you will lose is what’s not yet backed up.
If you do get this message:
Immediately disconnect your computer from the network cable (if you’re wired) or turn off WiFi (if you’re wireless) and contact the C&IT Help Desk at (313) 577-4778. Do not attempt to move files or circumvent the problem.
For more information see http://computing.wayne.edu/news-item.php?id=12814