Author Archives: FrugalBrothers Software, Inc

Does your bandwidth belong to autoplay videos and ads?

AutoplayBandwidth_SQWith Facebook’s recent announcement that they will allow video ads to automatically play in your news feed, three things are clear. The first is that the entire Internet just took an enormous step backwards into the 1990s (think GeoCities and webpages with music). The second is that most of us will either surf with our speakers turned off, or at least keep our fingers poised over the mute button. And the third is that bandwidth consumption is going to climb, no, skyrocket as more and more sites follow suit.

Since advertising seems to be the only reliable way to make money on the Internet, we should have seen this coming, but I for stopped going to CNN when they started playing their news videos automatically and and at full volume; so this is a trend that bothers me. And when you pay for bandwidth consumption because you are on a metered connection or mobile device, it’s not just the websites that are going to make money from advertising! But what can you do about it? Quite a bit, actually!
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What’s new in GFI WebMonitor 2015?

GFIWebMonitor2015_SQThe Internet is a world of information and opportunity. Every business knows that. What not all businesses realize is that the Internet can be a nasty piece of work with cybercriminals all too happy to pounce on unprotected networks. Monitoring, managing and securing a business network is a must today.  Product manager, Calin Ghibu explains why the latest version of GFI WebMonitor is the next generation of web security software for businesses and what’s so special about this release. Continue reading

Tonight’s forecast…cloudy with a chance of compromise!

DropboxIncident_SQOver the past few weeks we have seen data on cloud storage services being compromised. Celebrities’ personal photos were stolen from Apple’s iCloud service. Then Snapchat was compromised, with both photos and videos were stolen. Now, Dropbox is reacting to what they say is a compromise of another service’s credentials store that is being used to compromise Dropbox accounts of users who use the same username and password on multiple services.

A common theme across all of these is clear… cloud services are being compromised. Does this mean you should not trust cloud services? Pull all your data back down to local storage and cancel your Internet connection? Go off the grid and return to the trees? Of course not! Cloud services are a major component of our connected lives, and it is not at all true that they are inherently unsafe or vulnerable. They are, however, accessible from literally anywhere in the world, so most people should take more precautions with their data than they may be accustomed to.
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How much do you trust technology?

TrustTech-Oct_SQIt sometimes seems as if we’re abdicating more and more of the control over our everyday lives and handing it over to computers. Machines are analyzing the data and making many of the decisions that used to be the province of human beings. In some cases, this has had very positive results; in others, not so much.

A study conducted by Oxford University about a year ago said that almost half of the jobs currently occupied by people in the U.S. could be performed by computers. The combination of computers and robotics has already infiltrated many fields, with technology taking the place of pharmacists, legal researchers and document reviewers, reporters and more.
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October Advance Notification: Time for nine

PatchTueAdvNot-Oct_SQLast month, we got a bit of a break as Microsoft issued only four security bulletins and unlike the July and August patches, none of the September patches resulted in widespread problems (those with long memories might recall that the company wasn’t so lucky the previous year, when the September 2013 patches caused numerous reports of problems.

October is traditionally the month for fans of horror stories, so we’re crossing our fingers and hoping this month’s updates won’t bring any Halloween-like surprises. We have a medium-sized slate of patches: nine in all, three of which have been given a severity rating of critical; all of those are remote code execution issues – as are the vast majority of critical patches. One is rated moderate, and the remaining five are classified as important.
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20 things that could happen when there’s no web monitoring software

WorstThatCouldHappen_SQNobody wants to be the Internet Police. We’re probably all very happy with unrestricted Internet access, and it’s none of our business what other people do online.

That all changes in a business environment. Since the company’s PCs are company assets, the company pays for bandwidth, and there are all sorts of threats out there even for users who are doing the right things, companies need Internet monitoring and filtering. It has nothing to do with policing the Internet but it has everything to do with safeguarding your network, assets, investment and reputation.
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Block harmful websites or else…

BlockHarmfulWebsites_SQMost companies these days provide Internet access to their employees. Most employees consider Internet access like coffee service – something that they take for granted. While this is a great thing for both employers and employees to have, when that Internet access is completely unrestricted, bad things can happen with alarming frequency. Companies’ IT or security teams need to implement technical protections to block harmful websites, or employees can quickly find their workstations compromised by malware. Let’s first discuss why you would want to block harmful websites, and then how. Continue reading

Improving productivity with Internet monitoring software

InternetMonitoring_SQThe Internet is one of the best and most powerful information tools but it can be an enormous time sink if employees in the company have unrestricted Internet access. When those constantly on Facebook, Tumblr, Reddit and the rest are on the clock, that’s time and money they are taking away from the business! Providing users unrestricted Internet access is great, but not when it causes productivity issues. One way to deal with the problem is to manage and monitor access to the Internet so that you are efficiently using bandwidth, maintaining productivity and keeping employees happy.
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The top 24 facepalm moments in information security

24FacePalmMoments_SQIn case you missed it, there’s a newly discovered vulnerability in the BASH shell that impacts not only Unix and Linux systems, but Apple’s OS, F5s, Cisco hardware, access points, and practically every other device on the Internet that has an operating system or firmware that is based on Linux and an interface that parses remote data. It’s called ShellShock, but it’s not the wide ranging implications of every device other than Windows systems that deserves the facepalm, but that the vulnerability has apparently been around since 1992. Yes, that’s right. There are college grads in the IT workforce today who are younger than this vulnerability!
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