21 Technology Secrets Revealed

If you are an ardent user of communication devices such as Internet, mobiles, Webcam, etc. Then there a few truths about which you may not be aware of because ‘they’ are not revealing the facts to you. ‘They” refers to product manufacturers, wireless carriers, Google, your boss, etc. The reason why they do not want you to be aware is because your Webcam, your cell phone and even your boss may be scouting you.

You are most likely spending a lot of money for printer ink, impressive and smart subsidized phone will cost even more than the unsubsidized phone. Your personal computer may be covered with deadly flame retardants. That is just for beginners.

There is nothing to worry, the below article would clearly unveil all the secrets and give you all the related solutions.  If it can’t be dealt with, then ways of tackling the issue have also been described (if available). You cannot be the victim, if you are aware of what has to be done.

Just keep in mind: You’ve been cautioned.

Beware of Copyright Cop: Your ISP

The RIAA and MPAA might have a new friend. Next people who have busted you for unlawfully swapping movies and songs could be people you pay money for the Internet access.

Film and recording industries are in search of  manipulating data on the Internet is moved impartially and blindly, allow Internet Service Providers to scrutinize bits transient all the way through the networks and thereby to blocking any data that may defy copyrights– having a likeness or resemblance to Comcast’s notorious tries  to throttle  Bit Torrent connection in the year 2007.

Although meanwhile, according to certain leaked or undisclosed reports the international Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) are now being discussed in a private sessions, that includes provisions needed for internet service providers to regulate their networks for a copyright scofflaws. The Critics of proposed agreement apprehended that the copyright holders might insert “three-strikes” type of policy, in this the users might have their own Internet access discontinued if they are caught swapping copyrighted material more than two times.

“It is unsafe to give so many rights or powers to the copyright claims,” says W. Seltzer, the project leader for Chilling Effects. Having such an influential new partner who is playing a role of both enforcer and investigator copyright holders might encourage to pursue more customers suspected of defying copyrights? And what all protections would the customers have against the fake claims of violation?

The Solution: Contact your congress representative and tell that you go up against net neutrality ambiguity for the content filtering.  The support organizations including  the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Public Knowledge, Chilling Effects, which would  fight against the laws that would  turn Internet Service Providers into a Hollywood’s professional killer.

Do Cell Phones Really Crash Airplanes?

Both the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) advised airlines that the passengers should not be allowed to use their mobiles in commercial flights. The Federal Aviation Administration doubts that the radio frequency signals released by the devices that use spectrum band of 800MHz could obstruct navigation coordination of the flight, especially global positioning system instrumentation. Till date not a single case of a serious malfunction or an air accident due a mobile phone hampering the air flight’s navigation system has been registered. The cause of concern for the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) is that the various wireless networks on ground might be interrupt by mobile phones which are flying above your head.

It is similar to a plane flying above the wireless cell phone tower on the land, the  Federal Communications Commission believes, a cell site would identify all cell phones in service in the airplane and would work  to register those equipments to function on their network. Meanwhile the towers register and connect all the phones passing over them, the airplane might have crossed into the coverage of next cell phone tower on the route. Thus if the mobile phone is switched on it consumes system resources which would hamper network performance and connectively for the connected cell phones on the land. But few experts consider that this concern is outdated.

The Solution: Nothing much can be done. Basically, the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Aviation Administration are responsibly giving a big support here.

Browsing ‘porn mode’ or ‘Incognito’

Now a days, the majority of Web browsers present incognito or private (known informally known as “porn mode”). All that they really do is to inform your Brower that they should not record the sites that you have visited or looked at, not even the search terms that are been used by you, even the cookies that are deposited in the session.

If any site you visit has recorded your individual IP address as of them many do, the that information is only available to the concerned party which has all the legitimate right for such a request.–a section of people that can comprise of law enforcement and divorce attorneys. Recording the guests’ IP addresses would be a difficult job.

The Internet service supplier allots you an IP address firstly; therefore the service provider can follow anywhere you go while you are online, if the service provider desires to do so. In fact, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), an agency of the United States Department of Justice wants Internet Service Providers to store up your net surfing records for not less than two years or more. So far, chief Internet Service Providers have refuse to accept this drive, in part as the record-keeping and record-keeping necessities would be huge. What information Internet Service Providers keep hold of, and how long would they keep the data and how much open they would be differ from service provider to service provider—majority will not like to discuss about this. (One exception to this is Cox Communications that clearly says that it would keep hold of all IP logs for at least six months.).

The Solution: If someone in reality wants to browse off record, use proxy service, like Tor or Anonymizer, that obscure the IP address while you surf.

Are You Spending a Lot on the Printers’ Ink

If a business was to be built around fright tactics of selling the inkjet printers, then try using a refilled or refurbished cartridge, the maker of the printer might caution you that you are voiding the service guarantee, by putting the printer at threat of damage, or perhaps spoiling your printouts.

Nonsense, Mr. Bill McKenney says, the CEO of the Ink Tec Zone that sells equipments for the refilling of inkjet cartridges to its retailers including Wal-Mart International.

You would not void the guarantee and you would not hurt your printer, McKenney says a bad quality refill might leak ink inside the machine, otherwise the product works fine. And savings are noteworthy; there is more or less no cause not to do the refilling.

Companies such as HP who are selling inkjet printers scare the users of refilled cartridges. They warn the users that refilled cartridges may spoil the printouts or jeopardize the performance of your printer or even you may void the service warranty.

Bill McKenney – the CEO of the Ink Tec Zone, seller of refilling cartridges equipments, rejects all the warnings of inkjet printer’s manufacturers. However, he admitted that if a refill job is badly done then the ink may leak inside your printer. A lab testing done by PC World shows that the results of cartridges manufactured by printing machine manufacturers are far better than the printouts taken from third-party manufacturers. PCWorld conducted this study in collaboration with Rochester Institute of Technology. They have used leading ink jet printers from Hewlett-Packard, Epson, Kodak, Canon, and Lexmark. The lab tests of third-part manufacturers and original equipment manufacturers (OEM) were conducted side-by-side in order to compare the fade resistance and the quality of images.  The tests revealed that all the ink cartridges by third-party gave higher number of prints per cartridge, above that the costing was much lesser as compared to the OEMs. However, the quality of prints taken out by the ink from printer manufacturers was far better and was quite resistant to fading. The tests were conducted only on the selected printers that are available in the market. The prebate cartridges are sold at discount and it include a chip that prevents it from being refilled (labeled as a single use products).

The Solution: A refurbished cartridge may save you between 10 and 20 percent of the cost of new cartridge. Refills may take your savings up to more than 50 percent.

The shortcomings are that the quantity of ink in refilled cartridges may be at a lower side, the color quality of the printouts may not last for a longer period, and a cartridge can be refilled for 3 to 8 times before recycling or going for a new one.

License Agreements of the End User may not be Imposable

For an end user, signing a license agreement takes the minimum effort. Just open the software package, by ticking a box in the Website etc. make you bound legally. But as far as obligation is concerned, it totally depends upon the area of your residence as stated by Jonathan Ezor, director IBLT (Touro Law Center on the Long Island).

According to Ezor end-user license agreements (EULA) are contacts, which are included in state laws. The state laws are governed by state in which the company is situated or where the end-user is located.  The various other factors includes whether an agreement encloses restrictions that are unenforceable., or the agreement gives customers enough choice, and what are the method it gives its users to point out the agreement, as added by Ezor .

The chances of you going to the court over an end-user license agreement (EULA), however, are trivial. The actual matter is how companies implement them, says Ezor.

The Solution: Read end-user license agreements (EULA). Does software called “phone home” which is used to confirm that you are using a product as the originator wanted–and, if you are not, does a product have an ability to put out of action the program distantly? If it does not, you are almost certainly open to do as per your conscience.

Cyber War is Intensifying

There be lot of ground wars like in Afghanistan, but larger wars are being fought under the nose of the majority of Americans. For past few years, United States Government’s various computer networks are under blockade from the foreign opponents. This is What various people in charge do not want you to be aware is that it might have been protected. In other words the computer networks of United States government establishments are under attack from various foreign enemies. All these attacks can be prevented and the responsible people do not want you to be aware of that. The congressional committee revealed that in 2009, the assault on the Department of Defense computer network systems increased by 60 percent. The cost of cyber attacks is very high. The data released by the Joint Task Force-Global Network Operations states that the army spent about $100 million to ward off the attacks in six months (September 2008 – March 2009). Security experts were aware that cyber attacks were originated from the Chinese Internet Protocol. But it is difficult to find when these attacks were actually created in China, primarily because the Internet is decentralized. A number of United States government agencies, such as the Department of the Treasury and the Federal Trade Commission have been attacked by a botnet rooted from North Korea in July last year. Another attack originated from Chine which targeted Google, various research firms (government), think tanks, and contractors.

The Solution: Chief research analyst of IT-Harvest – Richard Stiennon, says that if the Federal government complies with the security protocols suggested by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), then it will solve 90% of the problems and they can start aiming the real culprits.

Google Could Betray You

If you extensively use free services offered by Google then there is possibility that they know everything about you. Google stores all the information about you which includes the maps viewed by you, search terms, your calendar, your contacts, e-mail messages, chat history, your videos on YouTube, pictures on Picasa, documents that are stored online, blogs account, advertising accounts, Google Buzz status updates, phone records of Google Voice. If you are using Google’s cell phone handset, Android they have access to all the data stored in the cell phone.

If the government gives a written order or a letter as per Patriot Act, the Google is compelled to pass on the entire information to the top authorities. The federal government can get the information about you from other sources as well but Google simplifies the job. Google reported that a phishing scheme compromised a number of (in thousands) Gmail accounts last October. This scheme has also targeted other services providers such as Yahoo, MSN Hotmail, and AOL. No wonder, last December Gmail account had been hacked by Chinese hackers.

The Solution: The Google Dashboard can be used to see the information that you are sharing and you can blow away the information that you do not want to share. Google Dashboard is a tool which gives a view of all the data points related to your Google accounts. Dashboard also allows the users to delete unwanted information which solve the privacy concerns of the users who do not want to float their personal information on Internet. You can change your Gmail password in every two months and make it very difficult to guess. If you suspect that your Gmail password has been stolen then you can user the account-recovery service offered by Google. Given the fact that user privacy has been compromised in Buzz, you can use the services of other service providers as well.

Medical Implants Such as Pacemakers Can Also be Hacked

University of Washington researchers revealed that medical implants which depend upon wireless technologies for setting adjustments and devices monitoring are also not safe.

A test conducted by the scientists from Harvard Medical School, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and University of Washington found that they were being able to a take the control of cardiac defibrillator and used it to induce a potential lethal condition ventricular fibrillation. They were also able to interpret medical information inside the device and capable of altering it as well. Tadayoshi Kohno, coauthor of the study commented that these techniques can be used in other medical devices (wireless) such as neuro-stimulators and drug dispensers. He predicted that in future these devices can be developed into complete computers, and any security loop hole in such devices can endanger the lives of innumerable patients.

Innovations in the field of medical devices are happening in a tremendously fast rate, Kohno says. In future they will be more like fully grown computers. This study was done to increase awareness and increase the understanding of the various types of security risk the devices could create.

The Solution: Unfortunately, we do not have a solution for this problem till now. The manufacturers of medical devices and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are aware about this security gap. However, till now not a single case of medical device hacking came into the light.

Your Personal Computer May Endanger Your Life

In recent years, electronic component manufacturers are taking various steps to reduce the use of dangerous chemicals. But the manufacturers are still using brominated flame retardants, which is used to decrease the threat of fire. The studies revealed that the retardant reduces the intelligent quotient in the children and lower the fertility rates in the individuals.

Arlene Blum, ED of Green Science Policy Institute, an institute which gives neutral scientific data to the non-governmental organizations, industry, and the government, said that if the circuit boards are burnt then brominated flame retardants, which are used in the production of circuit boards, are converted into brominated furans and dioxins, which are highly toxic in nature. This substance is very dangerous even while in the daily use because if BFR is applied in plastic casings it can transfer out of plastic via dust and enter into the body through the contact hand-to-mouth.

The Solution: Leading computer and computer peripheral manufacturers such as HP, Apple, and Dell are not using brominated flame retardants in their products. But some products that are manufactured before 2009, which produces heat including printers and laptops may still have BFR.  Currently all the vendors disclose their environment compliance and they reveal the type of material they are using for the manufacturing of their products.

But as far as older products are concerned, they have to be replaced.

The news is not all that bad, Michael Kirschner adds that the majority of producer in consumer ground have got the communication to stop using the additive BFRs  in their products.

But as far as older products are concerned, they have to be replaced anyways, right, Kirschner jokes.

Even Antivirus Software Can Not Protect You

The various Security programs would not actually defend you from Internet’s most horrifying nastiest. The Antivirus software merely catches easiest task, declares Mark Kadritch, the CEO of Security Consortium also the author of the book Endpoint Security. Growing number of is a computer attack that attempt to use computer application weaknesses which are not known to others not even the software developers. –together with a few  the vendors in ability to solve this security loopholes in the products that they offer for few months or  years—it implies that even the advanced antimalware products are likely to be behind curve while it counts, Mark Kadritch, the  CEO of Security Consortium.

The Internet Storm Center, a volunteer organization, follows the Internet attacks. ISC stated that generally malicious PDF documents are attached to the e-mails. The attacks are sent to few victims who are generally missed by the various security programs. The samples which were sent to ISC was firstly detected by only 15 percent of antivirus vendors.

The Solution: One cannot work without any security software (refer the Security Information Center for the evaluation of the most recent security packages and news), but in order to defend yourself in a more effective way you require to take additional measures including saving the data to the encrypted drives and also installing VMware or any other software that helps you make the execution of a computer that implement programs like physical machine and throw away them when they are infected.

In the end, if someone thinks that his computer has been compromised, click ‘restore’ in the VMware, says Kadritch. By doing this you might lose some of your important emails but it is worth as you will get a latest computer with greatest and latest updates.

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