Skip to comments.Run Fast, Run Naked - An alternative approach to internet security
Posted on 07/02/2005 11:27:16 AM PDT by BJungNan
Run Fast, Run Naked
Alternative Approach to Internet Security
Sometimes the best way to win the game is not to play it at all. What has all the net security programs, spy ware blockers, pop up blockers, firewalls and the like gotten you? In many cases, slower net browsing, a whole lot of configuration headaches and time to maintain all those programs.
Running naked may be the answer for you.
Running naked on the internet means running completely open with no spy ware protection programs, no pop-up blockers, no anti-virus software. Just a simple open connection.
Before you go into shock at someone suggesting dropping all internet security measures, read on. Running Naked really means running two computers: One for fun and another with all the normal net security.
What's To Steal?
If you had nothing of value in your car, your car was a low cost clunker that no one would want, would you leave your doors locked? Of course not. No one is going to try and get in it. With a computer on the internet it is essentially the same. If you don't have anything anyone could want, what is the point of locking it up?
Put in terms of the internet, if you don't do online banking, if you don't buy or sell on the internet, if all you do is browse the net for news, entertainment and an alternative to television, what's to protect?
Most people do more on their one computer than just browse the net. Internet banking and bill paying is very convenient, as if buying (and selling) on the internet. It is these other activities that are good reason, very good reason for every security measure you can afford or master.
But everything else you do outside of banking and bill paying and involving money on the internet decreases your security. The longer you are on line, the more you and your computer are exposed. So, for the important stuff, limit your time on the net.
Get A Second Computer - A Clunker
What exactly do you need to browse the internet. The newest latest and greatest computer with tons of megs and clock speed. Nope. You can browse the internet on a P-II, 400 Megahertz computer and a simple graphics card as quickly as you can with any other computer. Go one step further and run completely naked and you net browsing will fly. With a dial-up connection you will zing. Add a cable modem connection or DSL and you will get every bit of streaming video you could ever want to see on the so-called slow, outdated used computer.
Pick one up at Salvation Army, Good Will or other thrift store used for about $50.00. Monitors at these stores are anywhere from $2.00 to $20.00 for a good resolution.
This will be the internet computer you use to read the news, post to online forums, do research and whatever else you do to entertain yourself on the internet.
Now, you can not run this computer forever without some security measures. But this one is simple. You simply format your hard drive once on month (or more often if you like) and wipe away anything anyone may have dumped on your system. Start fresh, new, clean and Fast!
Your Other Computer - The fancy one you bought
This is your second computer. It rarely goes on line, never stays online and only goes online as long as needed to complete your banking, bill paying, buying, selling or other data sensitive activities. And, when you are done with this activities, you unplug the modem or phone cable - the best firewall in the world is a unplugged cable!
For this computer, use all the normal internet security. We have a basic site set up here with our recommendations for your net security.
That's it. That's our solution. Two computers. One for browsing that is completely open, unlocked, unblocked and naked. Another that only goes online for short periods of time and follows all the recommendations for safe internet use.
So now, Get Naked and Run Fast!
Better yet - reimage.
Why is re-imaging better?
And won't this whole deal work only with dynamic IP assignment? (Sorry if dumb questions...not a computer professional here...)
my computer is online all the time, yet I don't have these problems......
then again, I try to hack at the pop ups and attempt to block them or change their IP addresses too :)
reimaging allows you to not lose your information (documents, things you want to save, etc.), whereas reformating wipes EVERYTHING off of the hard drive and start with a clean slate...
Not a good idea. If you run naked you will soon be swamped with pop ups and data miners and trojans whether you have anyhting of value or not. All that crap is enough to slow you to a crawl. Besides, I enjoy cleaning house and shoveling all the crap out periodically.
An interesting idea.
You don't have to re-format/re-install anything. The image contains a copy of software/your preferred settings, etc. IOW - a computer setup just the way you want it - instead of going thru all the trouble of reformatting/reinstalling.
Of course - you'll have to reformat/install/setup the machine initially to create the image. But after that, it only takes 15-30 minutes to reimage and bang - it's setup just the way you like it. As far as my personal documents, etc - those reside on my server, which I back up to DVD once a week...
But that's the point, isn't it? If you just re-image, you're not cleaning up all the tracks created while running naked, and directory structures, file locations and CLSIDs and all will not be changed, perhaps?
I am not a big fan of more legislation to cure whatever ails our society, but I would favor the death penalty for pop-up ad makers and spyware purveyors, and I would hold ISP's financially liable after the first report of a spammer on its system.
I suppose I am naive about all this, and that the out of the country spammers could never be held accountable.
I have two computers, one for the 'net and the other for my development and other stuff. They are NOT networked, but they each have a ZIP disk drive, so if I download something I want to keep, I transfer it that way, or by burning a CD if it's really big file.
But the truth is, I haven't had any problem with spyware whatsoever since I installed Mozilla Firefox. Even so, I still use ZoneAlarm, Symantec Systemworks, and Ad-Aware.
no necessarily, but it does remove any installed programs, i.e. spyware and all of that stuff....
if your virus definitions and security software is better than it was, it stands a better chance of blocking such intrusions...
but I wouldnt run around "naked" on the internet. That is what the hackers are waiting for....
I guess no one has heard of MSNTV2. It's a very simple, user friendly, internet reciever similar to webtv. I'm using it to post this message. www.msntv2.com
Re-imaging in this case means restarting from square one. You do a clean install, put on all the programs that you want, and (before ever connecting to the internet) saving an image.
Then you browse around for a while, attracting all sort of bugs and such. But every so often you copy your previously-saved image of your clean start back onto your machine, in effect wiping everything that's been done since.
That being said, I have free anti-virus, free anti-spyware, and free anti-popup installed. They're all set to update and scan automatically. I almost never see a popup (about 1 or 2 month gets through--really), haven't had a virus for over a year (and the one that I had a year ago was caught and cleared automatically--caused no damage) and spyware is cleared daily if it gets through.
I have DSL and my computer is connected 24/7/365 and has been online for close to three years straight. $0.00 down, $0.00 per month.
Or, just get a Macintosh and use OS X with Firefox.
In theory a good idea. In practice, totally unworkable. What about downloading, online gaming, e-mail, etc. and trying to maintain preferences, cookies, etc. Who except a masochist would want to perpetually be in a state of reformatting, restoring, reinstalling, reconfiguring, reupdating, etc.? Unless this guy browes in a completely generic, image-free, courier text-based, non-interactive, vanilla environment, I don't see how this could work.
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