Saturday, 29 September 2018

Hackers? Where the...


Reports of and on software breaches, like the recent Facebook one where some 30 to 50million users’ data was compromised are becoming a frequent occasion. One of the problems is the sheer volume of code. I have done my own website and a few others and I can assure you I have run into those problems when due to wanting to ‘move’ an object or image you inadvertently run into that the code you used clashes with something similar already there. Or you used a subroutine that also unknowingly interacts with something else. The thing is this, why do software developers not test out their code much more thoroughly? In the race for getting nice looking web-sites with plenty of user-interactive items we have just allowed ourselves to become vulnerable. There is no time for checking. There is no excuse for Facebook to blandly state that ‘It is a war'. Yes, but only because they have left themselves defenceless. The problem has arisen and up to 50 million are compromised and now the word is, we have patched the vulnerability. Great, but the vulnerability should not be there in the first place. It is the same with Microsoft, it is mostly not new software but added on bits all over the place. Some of these create what I call open ports, or easy ways to scan and glean data. It is however true to say that computers cannot be 100% safe. Simply because you need to get on-line, meaning you open the door and say ‘Cooeee, here I am, come and get me’. Having a defence therefore of good and sound software and not using the machine to visit nefarious places or answering emails from the Nigerian princes who are dying and wish to give you millions of their money before they go or even thinking you won the Canadian Lottery without having bought a ticket? A lot of damage can be avoided by better use of your systems. Remember the Russian or any other hackers, never sleep. Keep your doors closed and lock them because Putin might come a’nocking! Actually is already doing it!

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