Tag Archives: Waste Management

Security – Passwords – Can yours be CRACKED

Many years ago you would have a few passwords and be able to remember them, today your Password list can be huge and how do you remember them. 

Most people make it really simple and use the same password for everything, not the best method for sure.  Someone figures it out and they have access to everything!  Others use simple easy to remember passwords – like birthday dates, anniversaries – again not the best method – one of the first things people try to information that can usually be easy to find!

So what do you do – make it easy to remember or create a strong password that is almost impossible to break!  The most secure method is to make a very strong password each time.  I guess you could use a mix, making sure you use strong passwords for online Banking and other important informational locations and your passwords for online contact, news and others simple to remember.  There are methods to creating a strong password and to remember them – Microsoft has an article you should review.

There are many tools available on the WEB and Smart phones that allow you to keep records of your passwords – some say these work well and secure.  I use the Blackberry password manager for many of my passwords.  This is something you will have to determine for yourself!  They are a number of  these that are free, I have tried some and they work well.

Things you want to make sure you don’t do are:

Common password pitfalls to avoid

Cyber criminals use sophisticated tools that can rapidly decipher passwords.

Avoid creating passwords using:

  • Dictionary words in any language.
    Words in all languages are vulnerable.
  • Words spelled backwards, common misspellings, and abbreviations.
    Words in all languages are vulnerable.
  • Sequences or repeated characters.
    Examples: 12345678, 222222, abcdefg, or adjacent letters on your keyboard (qwerty).
  • Personal information.
    Your name, birthday, driver’s license, passport number, or similar information.

REVIEW ENTIRE Microsoft DOCUMENT – Create strong passwords

Don’t let your password get cracked!Eggshells

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Malicious Software – What are you doing about it? Security!

One of those things we say we should do and don’t…  My computer at home is only used by me, so I am confident that I will not do something silly and get infected.  My other systems in the house is another story – my wife and two daughters use this and you never know what might happen.  You need to keep yourself safe when on the WEB, if you don’t do a few basic things you just might end up getting infected and that is not fun.  Sometime you can get it removed and go on, other times you have to start from scratch which could mean losing information or just a lot of time or money to get it done.

First off everyone should have Antivirus software running and keeping it up to date.

You should also be running a Malicious Software Removal Tool regularly to ensure no one has done something they shouldn’t have….This advice was too late for my father-in-law whose system got infected bad!  All antivirus software is shut down, no internet access at all in order to download the MSRT either.  I am hoping the USB ports are not shut down as well as I am hoping to load up the MSRT from a USB key – we will have to see!

Microsoft – Malicious Software Removal Tool

The Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool is a free malware scanner and remover which is updated every first Tuesday of each month. The tool (mrt.exe) is located in the system32 directory of Windows and it silently scans the computer after being updated via Windows Update. MRT or MSRT does not run to scan the system all the time but any PC user can manually scan the PC to check the system from Trojans, worms and other malware that MRT can identify. Note that MRT does not detect all type of threats but was developed by Microsoft to detect and remove malware that is in the wild, especially from worms that targets vulnerable components in Windows.

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Filed under Desktop, Education, Internet, Kids, Management, Microsoft, Security, Software, Virus, WEB

e-Waste – did you know how bad it is?

Most of us don’t think of what happens to our OLD electronics, but doing some research and reading the details of a 60 Minute piece that ran, I was horrified of the ramifications of what is happening.

I was glad to see the US Government is trying to do something about it but obviously more needs to be done.

This week in Washington, D.C., U.S. Representatives Gene Green and Mike Thompson introduced legislation to stop U.S. “recyclers” from dumping electronic waste on developing countries. It’s a serious problem that was notably documented by 60 Minutes back in 2008.  You have to read the article!

Just reading the outline of the 60 minute piece made me angry.  Not sure if you have dropped off electronics at a recycling event – thinking that the product would be recycled and re-used where possible – not shipped oversea’s.  It sounds like this is a huge illegal money-making business that is hurting communities in other countries with less safety controls and laws.

This is a follow-up from my previous post a few days ago.

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Life Cycle – What do you do with your OLD Equipment? Sell/Recycle/Pitch

What do you do with your OLD Computer equipment?   Do you sell it to local recycling companies for a few bucks a unit?

Have you ever wondered where this product might end up!  Until I read the following article I never realized just how bad it could be.

Did you know CDI offers RECYCLING and we will give you a CERTIFICATE of Destruction that proves (Legally) that your assets will not end up overseas and were recycled safety is in questions.

The Problem of Global Electronic Waste Dumping

Many electronics recyclers don’t actually recycle the electronics they collect. They can make more money by selling old electronic products to exporting waste traders than by processing it here in the US.  Traders send it to developing countries where workers earn extremely low wages (often a few dollars per day) and where health and safety and environmental laws, enforcement, infrastructure and citizens’ rights are very weak.

Simply stated, we are solving our e-waste problem by exporting it to poor countries around the globe. 

Primitive Processing Contaminates Workers, Residents

In these countries, the e-waste ends up in backyard recycling operations, often literally behind peoples’ homes. One example is Guiyu, China, an area where a lot of our e-waste goes. They use crude and unsafe methods of taking apart our old computers and TVs to get to and remove the metals, which they can sell, causing great harm in the process. These dangerous practices include:

  • Bashing open cathode ray tubes with hammers, exposing the toxic phosphor dust inside.
  • Cooking circuit boards in woks over open fires to melt the lead solder, breathing in toxic lead fumes.
  • Burning wires in open piles to melt away the plastics (to get at the copper inside).
  • Burning the plastic casings, creating dioxins and furans – some of the most poisonous fumes you can breathe.
  • Throwing the unwanted (but very hazardous) leaded glass into former irrigation ditches
  • Dumping pure acids and dissolved heavy metals directly into their rivers.

These horrific working conditions plus weak labor standards in China and many of the other developing countries where e-waste is sent, mean that women and children are often directly exposed to lead and other hazardous materials.

READ THE ENTIRE WRITE UP

Let CDI offer you a service where your sure your not hurting or taking advantage of others in other countries.  We can take care of your computer needs from the 1st day to the last day of its life cycle.

Posted another item after this one – e-Waste – did you know it was this bad!

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