From:         Bob Rankin 
Subject:      TOURBUS - 23 Aug 2005 - Blue Frogs / Secure FTP


The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2239
Copyright © Bob Rankin and Patrick Crispen - All rights reserved

Will a plague of blue frogs storming the Internet bring an end to spam, or are they just virtual vigilantes? And can uploading files to your website expose your password to Evil Hackers? Read on...

Will Blue Frogs Be the End of Spam?

BlueSecurity is an attempt to create an anti-spam network. Members of the community (known as Blue Frogs) install special software that sends automatic complaints to websites that advertise in spam emails. The hope is that the "spamvertised" website will be flooded with complaints, effectively creating a denial of service attack that will make it impossible for them to do business.

I have doubts that this will work, and they extend beyond the ethics and legalities of participating in an amphibious denial of service attack. For the full story, click this link:

Is FTP Secure?

A reader recently asked me this: "I got a warning that FTP was not secure any more and that I should download a fix. I'm not very tech savvy, so I depend on you to keep my computer healthy. So is this something I should do? And if you're wondering how an idiot like me can have a website to ftp to, all my younger relatives help me."

The short answer is NO, the FTP protocol is NOT secure. If you have a website, and you use FTP to transfer files from your computer to a web server, you need to read this article to make sure you're not giving away the keys to your digital domain.

Free Virus Scan

If the idea of shelling out cold, hard cash for an anti-virus program doesn't sit well with you, then how about some free anti-virus software? There are some nifty online scanners that let you check for viruses just by connecting to a website. And there are some good old-fashioned full-fledged anti-virus packages you can download for free. Read this article to find out where to get the goods, gratis:

More Stumpers!

Everyone knows that TOURBUS riders are smarter and better-looking than the average Internet user, and each person has their own area of expertise. So I'm sure we can pool our collective intelligence to help some fellow netizens find answers to their perplexing questions.

Recent Stumpers in the AskBobRankin [Inbox] include these: "Can't Backup to a CD", "Program Loading Order", and "Mozilla Interferes With McAfee". With all due apologies in advance to Radio Shack... You got answers? We got questions!

You can also read my answers to reader questions about deleting files from a CD-RW disk, converting an internal hard drive to external, and what to do when your laptop monitor dies.

That's all for now, see you next time! -- Bob Rankin

The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2239
Copyright © Bob Rankin and Patrick Crispen - All rights reserved
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