How to stay reasonably safe in the connected world

by Volker Weber

There is a huge tidal wave of malware coming at you. It's going to target devices that are not reasonably secure and it's going to target gullible people. If you have grown up with a PC and your ability to install about anything that lands on your computer, from sources unknown, you are sitting right in the middle of the crosshairs. And Norton is not going to protect you.

Here are a couple of rules for people who know their stuff. I won't reach the completely clueless.

  1. Do not jailbreak your device. It removes an important layer of security. Yes, you will unfortunately have to pay for your software. If you root your Samsung phone, Knox is disabled, forever. And for a reason.
  2. Stay out of the mainstream. Attackers will always attack the dominant platform. There is more to gain, because there are more potential victims. And frankly, more stupid people.
  3. Choose devices that get regular updates. Choose vendors that publish change logs. Those are the ones that fix problems and tell you about it.
  4. Never install anything from "other" sources. The most stupid warez I have seen are cracked copies of "secure" apps like Threema. You have no idea what you are installing. And on some platforms you have no way to ever remove what you just installed. Even if the app disappears from your launcher.

Take a hint from this list. It shows supported platforms for a spyware. Try not to be this guy.

Comments

haha, first time I'm happy Windows Phone isn't supported ;-)

Thomas Baschetti, 2014-08-06 19:20

One year ago I made the decision for a Debian desktop combined with Google Nexus mobile devices and it feels good to see confirmed this wasn't the worst move. As a heavy Threema user I can't imagine who would ever install a cracked Threema app. Well, maybe I can.

Philipp Sury, 2014-08-08 13:09

Those are people that are smarter than others and can pinch a penny.

Volker Weber, 2014-08-08 13:37

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vowe.net is a personal website published by Volker Weber a.k.a. vowe. I am an author, consultant and systems architect based in Darmstadt, Germany.

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