Detect, Protect, Dis-infectWritten by Robert Rogers
Consumers Online Face Wide Choices in Security Products
With new threats to computer security and data integrity a regular feature of evening news, a panoply of products that promise to detect, protect, and dis-infect are being marketed to consumers. Intrusion detection systems, firewalls and anti-virus software are critical to online security, but Federal Trade Commission, nation’s consumer protection agency, says computer users — from grade school kids to grandparents — need to know exactly why they need online security products and what they’re buying.
Why Need Computers “talk” to each other over Internet by sending data through their communications ports. If a port is open, it “listens” for communications from Internet. A computer has thousands of ports: which ones are open depends on software computer is running. Hackers can “eavesdrop” or scan ports to determine which are open and vulnerable to unauthorized access.
Detection An intrusion detection system (IDS) monitors incoming Internet traffic, much like a security camera “watches” your front door to see who might be trying to come in. When IDS detects a suspicious pattern, it sends an alert (and creates a record) that an intruder may be trying to break in to your computer. Some IDS alerts — but not all — show a pop-up message on your screen. An IDS alone cannot prevent an unauthorized entry into your computer; only a firewall can do that.
CAN-SPAM Rules for Internet MarketersWritten by John Calder
© 2004, John Calder http://www.TheEzine.net
On January 1, 2004, "CAN-SPAM Act", short for "Controlling Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003", took effect. Marketers who send any form of commercial email as defined by act will need to comply with CAN-SPAM rules in order to avoid legal consequences. The act was designed to reduce unsolicited commercial messages, sent both as email and to wireless devices such as cell phones.
There is of course much debate about how effective this law will prove to be in stopping spam. After all, spammers can easily send their messages from email servers located overseas, in locations beyond effective reach of US enforcement efforts. Many marketers feel that spam will continue flooding us as ever, while legitimate, opt-in marketers, who want to comply with law, will have to jump through time-consuming and sometimes expensive extra hoops to be able to send email. In fact, many believe that act will lead to an upsurge in spam regardless, because it seems to be legal as long as it meets requirements of act.
For marketers to comply with law, they need to follow some simple guidelines provided for in legislation. Virtually all marketers who run email lists are already in compliance with most of law. Generally, any business communicating with existing customers or prospects by mail must include in their emails a valid return email address that is active for at least 30 days after commercial email is sent; a physical mailing address, valid and NOT a P.O. Box; and a way for recipients to opt-out of future mailings. In addition, subject line must not be misleading or deceptive, state in some way message is an advertisement or commercial in nature, and marketer must honor opt-out requests. Again, probably none of that is too much different from what you're already doing, except perhaps for addition of physical mailing address.