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Facebook calls for an end to Adobe Flash – Firefox Blocks Flash over its Hacking Holes

July 14, 2015

Flash was banned from Microsoft IOS devices a long time ago by Steve Jobs. It had and still has a lot of security vulnerabilities as the recent expose’s have demonstrated.

The problems with Flash are so extensive that Firefox blocks it by default, users who want to expose their computers to risk have to deliberately avoid the protection blocking flash offers and allow it.

The Guardian newspaper covered the issue today, the story can be read here:

Mashable has a handy set of instructions for blocking Flash in all popular browsers… read here:

If you are worried [!] that you will miss something if you turn off Flash, and have Safari, here are instructions on how to check to see what sites you have visited that had Flash content on them.

In Safari, click on Safari > Preferences > Security Tab > Internet Plugins, click on Website settings.

Its clear from the recent news items that Flash is a risk, its up to you to take action.

WatchGuard Firebox M200 and M300 Firewalls

June 4, 2015

Because smaller companies are generally less protected and easier to break into, small business has become the new big target for cyber attacks. The Firebox M200 and M300 firewalls are specifically engineered to defend all types of small businesses against attacks that are no less fierce than those targeting larger organizations.

Firebox M200 and M300 Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW) and Unified Threat Management (UTM) solutions are up to 218 percent faster than competing products with all security layers turned on, and up to 385 percent faster performing HTTPS inspection, ensuring businesses never have to compromise network security for performance.

Comprehensive Protection

Best-of-breed security services boost protection in critical attack areas, including gateway AV, URL and web content filtering, intrusion prevention, app control, and spam blocking.

Real-time Visibility

A suite of big-data style visibility and reporting tools are included with your Support contract. Use the Policy Map dashboard to quickly find active and misconfigured policies and drill down as needed.

Layers of Defense

WatchGuard offers eight security subscriptions for the M200 and M300, so businesses can build up protection where they need it most. Subscriptions can be purchased individually or bundled together for even greater savings.

Outstanding Performance

Up to 4 Gbps firewall throughput. Turn on optional security services and still see up to 800 Mbps throughput.

3 Ways to Manage Your Appliance

You have the power to choose how you manage your WatchGuard appliance, including WatchGuard System Manager, the command line interface, and a web UI for access from anywhere, anytime

Maximum Network Uptime

High availability capabilities – active/active and active/passive – ensure your network is always up and running. Buy two M200s or M300s for a high availability pair and receive 50% off the cost of the second device.


Information posted on the Watchguard website – click here for more details

Apple Watch… continuing

June 4, 2015

The Apple watch is my defacto watch now. The information screen, the time face when I flip my wrist is all I need to see now. The activity monitor is working well and encouraging me to walk more as well as stand up even if it is only to go and see someone across the office. A work colleague has the same sport watch, but her’s has a pretty pink watch band. Like me she has the larger of the two watch sizes.

She is much further ahead in the use of the watch with her cycling routes and routines. Her comments all add to the watch being great and preventing her having to buy additional exercise monitors.

The watch continually comes home with at least 70% charge remaining. I leave it on to charge each evening but with that amount of charge remaining I am very tempted to not charge it each night and instead, charge it every other evening.

One thing I have to get into my mindset is the coordination between my iPhone and the watch. Changes I recently made to the notifications on my iPhone ended up changing the behaviour of my watch when it came to notifications. I have reset them back to the way they were, in fact the changes on the iPhone were annoying, the watch magnified how much they were. Thinking ahead and making sure you do not make changes on the iPhone that will end up on the watch is now important, but then on refection, changing the behaviour of the iPhone should have been thought through more.

A few people have noticed the watch and asked about it. Some in more detail about the functions and the use case I have for it. Others are more inquisitive about the cosmetic appearance of the watch. In that regard the response has been very favourable. I have the Space Grey with Black strap.


Apple Watch since April 24th, Day 7

May 30, 2015

Well, day 3 unto day 7 were all for me to commune with the decisions I had made to turn things off not what I could turn on. Since I reported on Day 1 and day 2 experiences and features that have been turned off or left on, I have not added, or enabled a single feature. OK, so I did add a couple of friends, but that is all.

The point about configuring a highly configurable device like an Apple Watch, your computer, tablet or the car stereo is that over a period of time you are happy with the settings and can live with them. They are familiar and do what you want time and time again. You live with them until they become boring, do not fit your life style or use case anymore, or quite simply there is something new you want to experience.

The one thing that has been a blessing is the move alert. It is so obvious to me now how long I have been sitting at my desk without getting up and even doing modest activity when it goes off. I think Tim Cook is correct when he says that sitting is dangerous and to be avoided.

When the activity monitor is not good is when for various reasons, getting up and walking about is not possible, not desirable, or the alert is simply creates a feeling of annoyance! When I say annoying it is rather like a lightening rod for something else that is really annoying. It is just a lot easier to direct your feeling towards the watch and the haptic engine.

Today, day 7 is the first day this week that the movement alert has proved to be annoying. But I am glad to be annoyed by it. I am glad that I feel a little ashamed at not getting up and walking around. But what I am really annoyed at is not the watch it is the person that chooses not to read an email and instead forward an irrelevant one.

i have been impressed by the notifications I have received. Notifications for calendar items. And notifications for text messages and phone calls. they have been great and I appreciate them.

Apart from that I have been very impressed by the amount of battery life left in the watch after a full days of use – 7am until 5:30pm. I regularly have 60% battery left. It makes me think I could get 2 days on a charge.

Next, integration with the iPhone.


Day 1 with the Apple Watch

May 24, 2015

Let’s say this up front, I use and like Apple computers, iPads and iPhones because they work!

They integrate well, a contact or appointment I enter on one device ends up on all the others.

So, why the Apple Watch? Not because it is another piece of Apple gear, but because the use case I have for such a product fits well with what Apple has produced. Even the first version of the Apple watch meets my use case. Of courses there will be newer, skinnier versions of it coming along just as the first iPhone I bought was the 3, so no we are on the 6. But if I wait for the “perfect” or next Apple Watch, I will wait for ever, because there will be just one more reason to wait rather than dive in and work with the one that is available.

On that subject, did Apple get it wrong, did they release something for order that was not available? Perhaps, perhaps they did get the size of interest in the device wrong. The shift to online ordering and eliminating the line ups out side the Apple stores is interesting but has put a silence into the release of the watch that none of the of the other Apple devices have had. I say silence not because there has been no chatter on the interwebs or the general media. There has. but because the watch had the potential to be bigger than the iPhone and other Apple devices.

Also there is the matter of the number of versions of the watch. The number of different cases, the number of different straps, and how many gold watches do you stock in each store, just in case someone comes in looking to drop a wad of cash. No, the online ordering was/is the correct way to do the launch, but the availability of hardware to satisfy orders, whatever configuration the shopper chose, that is wrong. Waiting a week is one, waiting a month, as in my case, that was wrong.

Day 1:


The UPS site says my watch is somewhere “In Transit,” then bingo, it arrives at the office door. According to the UPS site it never made it to the local delivery, but hey, I can live with it arriving a few days earlier than UPS says it will. It all adds to the event.

The packaging is usual Apple quality and with taking your time over whilst unwrapping it. After all, a lot of thought went into this package, so enjoy the experience.

The gap between when I ordered it, the first day you could, and today has allowed me to read many other authors experiences with the Watch. IT also allowed me time to refine my Use Case for the watch.

Turn off all the notifications and add them back slowly is one recommendations. I did that. I also did not load all the apps on my iPhone that have Apple Watch capabilities. Actually I have only added one app, my bank app. Yes, CIBC a Canadian Bank, has a fully functional app for the Watch. I also applied the most recent software update for the watch. I have also not messed with the default watch face that my watch came with. It provides all I want, Time, Temp, Date, and when a notification is available, it shows that too. I will explore the other watch faces but for now, this is fine.

As far mu needs for a watch this works fine. Activation the Activity feature, allows it ti capture my heart rate, amount of time I sit and the overall activity level during the day. this is fine. Once paired with the iPhone and all the settings made, and the watch is charged, it is all ready to go.

Starting from 7am and continually in use as a watch and activity monitor, with a few notifications, at8pm, the watch was still 65% charged.

Day 2:

The gym, the other primary use case it os allow me to track results in my goal after a few fitness problems to get back to where i was five years ago. This morning, some weight training and 45 minutes of cardio. Using the Indoor cycling setting my calorie expenditure was 120% of what I planed. A combination of the stationary bike’s settings and features and monitoring of my heart rate etc showed I was performing well within the boundary of my fitness target. Sustaining it for longer will be a challenge and as I made 120% of my goal, setting a higher goal and meeting it will be interesting.

At the end of Day 2, the watch is doing even better, charge remaining is 75% even though it was used more extensively today.

The integration between the watch and the iPhone have worked well in perfecting the current minimalist setup. I am already experimenting with the notifications I receive and what is possible, that is sound as well as haptic touch. So far the additional notifications I have added back, have all been reverted back to “off’ and sound is defiantly not required for any notifications.

We will see what day 3 brings tomorrow.


Canada’s internet performance on trial with public’s help

May 17, 2015

Originally posted on the CBC News website May 17, 2015 @ 5AM

The people behind the .ca domain are asking Canadians to test their internet connection speed as part of a crowdsourcing project to gauge the health and performance of the country’s internet.

The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) hopes to get “a very diverse, broad and fulsome picture of all Canadians’ internet performance,” Byron Holland, the organization’s president and CEO, says in an upcoming interview on Spark with Nora Young.

The company wants people everywhere in Canada to log on and run the test. After clicking one button, people will be shown data including their upload and download speeds.

There are other tests to determine internet speed, but those tend to assume perfect conditions. This one will find the “real world speed” of someone’s internet connection, Holland says.

He compares internet speed to a vehicle’s fuel consumption. “You see what’s on that window sticker and that gives you the optimum mileage that that car could ever achieve in perfect conditions,” he says. “Whereas, out in the real world, we all know that mileage may vary.”

A number of things can interfere with optimal internet speed, such as a user’s connection to their internet service provider, congestion in their neighbourhood, or network bottlenecks experienced at various points through the path the user’s data follows.

The internet authority developed the program to get “the real facts” on Canada’s internet situation, Holland says. It will provide unbiased, neutral data.

Participants can see results

Anyone who runs the test will receive their data, but the organization will also collect 100 different data points about internet connections that will be shared with researchers and others to help judge the health and performance of Canada’s internet landscape. The data is anonymously collected, according to the authority.

It will also map all the data so everyone who runs the tests will see how their performance compares with others in their neighbourhood.

It’s an important project because “the health and performance of a country’s internet is really its digital currency,” he says.

“Like the currency of a country, our digital currency needs to be strong and robust in order to create that climate that breeds innovation, success, enhanced communication — all of those things that we associate with a robust technology community are, in a sense, all based on healthy performance at reasonable cost of the underlying internet.”

Watch the video description by clicking here

Or Run the test by clicking here

GTAV Mod Malware – Daily Security Byte EP.84

May 16, 2015

Grand Theft Auto mods for PCs infected with. … gamers might have been infected with a key logger it’s no fun at all. Watch the the Daily Byte video to learn what “mods” GTA V PC gamers should avoid.

Check out the Watchguard Video by clicking here

Originally on the WatchGuard security blog here


Lenovo Security Fail – Daily Security Byte EP.78

May 8, 2015

Published on May 7, 2015

In this short, daily video post, Corey Nachreiner, CISSP and Director of Security Strategy for WatchGuard Technologies, shares the biggest InfoSec story from the day often sharing useful security tips where appropriate.

Click here for the video

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How to Reset Launchpad Layout in OS X Yosemite

May 5, 2015

Launchpad serves as a quick way to open applications on the Mac from a familiar iOS-like icon grid interface. If you’ve customized the way these app icons and arranged in Launchpad, you may decide you’d like to start from scratch and reset their order to how things appear when you first get a Mac. This can also be helpful if you want to rearrange the way Launchpad icons show up, but it can also be helpful to resolve some display bugs with Launchpad, particularly if an icon doesn’t show up or is displaying incorrectly.


prior versions of OS X, users were able to refresh Launchpad contents by dumping a handful of database files, but in OS X 10.10.x onward, you’ll need to use a defaults command string to reset Launchpad contents and layout instead.

    1. Open the Terminal application and enter the following defaults write command string:

defaults write ResetLaunchPad -bool true; killall Dock

  1. Hit return and wait for the Dock to relaunch and Launchpad to reset

When you open Launchpad again, the layout will have returned to the default, placing all bundled apps onto the first screen of Launchpad, and third party apps onto the secondary (and third, if applicable) screens.

You can now rearrange the icons and layout of Launchpad as you see fit, or just keep the default layout of Apple apps on the first screen, with third party apps and additions on the later screens.

This defaults command string was found on stackexchange, though the user who mentioned it still listed the old database dumping trick as a necessary step – in testing, that latter  Launchpad database removal command is not necessary to simply reset the Launchpad layout in OS X Yosemite 10.10.x +.

This post  originally appeared in – click here to read the post


Bedep Trojan Gets Political – Daily Security Byte EP.74

May 1, 2015

The Bedep trojan (or botnet client) has been around for a long time, allowing hackers to steal information and make money. However, new research shows that it now has political motives as well. Watch today’s video to learn what it’s up to.

Click here to watch the video

Originally Posted on the Watchguard Blog – here