How to Survive Super-Worm

31 03 2009

A super nasty computer virus, Conficker, is due to strike tomorrow, April Fool’s Day. Here are two useful articles that may help.

~Eowyn

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virus

Last-minute Conficker survival guide

Tue Mar 31, 2009 1:42PM EDT

http://tech.yahoo.com/blogs/null/132464

 

Tomorrow — April 1 — is D-Day for Conficker, as whatever nasty payload it’s packing is currently set to activate. What happens come midnight is a mystery: Will it turn the millions of infected computers into spam-sending zombie robots? Or will it start capturing everything you type — passwords, credit card numbers, etc. — and send that information back to its masters?

 

No one knows, but we’ll probably find out soon.

 

Or not. As Slate notes, Conficker is scheduled to go “live” on April 1, but whoever’s controlling it could choose not to wreak havoc but instead do absolutely nothing, waiting for a time when there’s less heat. They can do this because the way Conficker is designed is extremely clever: Rather than containing a list of specific, static instructions, Conficker reaches out to the web to receive updated marching orders via a huge list of websites it creates. Conficker.C — the latest bad boy — will start checking 50,000 different semi-randomly-generated sites a day looking for instructions, so there’s no way to shut down all of them. If just one of those sites goes live with legitimate instructions, Conficker keeps on trucking.

 

Conficker’s a nasty little worm that takes serious efforts to bypass your security defenses, but you aren’t without some tools in your arsenal to protect yourself.

 

Your first step should be the tools you already have: Windows Update, to make sure your computer is fully patched, and your current antivirus software, to make sure anything that slips through the cracks is caught.

 

But if Conficker’s already on your machine, it may bypass certain subsystems and updating Windows and your antivirus at this point may not work. If you are worried about anything being amiss — try booting into Safe Mode, which Conficker prevents, to check — you should run a specialized tool to get rid of Conficker.

 

Microsoft offers a web-based scanner (note that some users have reported it crashed their machines; I had no trouble with it), so you might try one of these downloadable options instead: Symantec’s Conficker (aka Downadup) tool, Trend Micro’s Cleanup Engine, or Malwarebytes. Conficker may prevent your machine from accessing any of these websites, so you may have to download these tools from a known non-infected computer if you need them. Follow the instructions given on each site to run them successfully. (Also note: None of these tools should harm your computer if you don’t have Conficker.)

As a final safety note, all users — whether they’re worried about an infection or know for sure they’re clean — are also wise to make a full data backup today.

 

What won’t work? Turning your PC off tonight and back on on April 2 will not protect you from the worm (sorry to the dozens of people who wrote me asking if this would do the trick). Temporarily disconnecting your computer from the web won’t help if the malware is already on your machine — it will simply activate once you connect again. Changing the date on your PC will likely have no helpful effect, either. And yes, Macs are immune this time out. Follow the above instructions to detect and remove the worm.

 

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How to tell, what to do if computer is infected (AP)

Posted on Sun Mar 15, 2009 12:46PM EDT

http://tech.yahoo.com/news/ap/20090315/ap_on_hi_te/tec_inside_a_botnet_checklist

 

Computer-virus infections don’t cause your machine to crash anymore.

Nowadays, the criminals behind the infections usually want your computer operating in top form so you don’t know something’s wrong. That way, they can log your keystrokes and steal any passwords or credit-card numbers you enter at Web sites, or they can link your infected computer with others to send out spam.

 

Here are some signs your computer is infected, tapped to serve as part of “botnet” armies run by criminals:

 

• You experience new, prolonged slowdowns. This can be a sign that a malicious program is running in the background.

 

• You continually get pop-up ads that you can’t make go away. This is a sure sign you have “adware,” and possibly more, on your machine.

 

• You’re being directed to sites you didn’t intend to visit, or your search results are coming back funky. This is another sign that hackers have gotten to your machine.

 

So what do you do?

 

• Having anti-virus software here is hugely helpful. For one, it can identify known malicious programs and disable them. If the virus that has infected your machine isn’t detected, many anti-virus vendors offer a service in which they can remotely take over your computer and delete the malware for a fee.

 

• Some anti-virus vendors also offer free, online virus-scanning services.

 

• You may have to reinstall your operating system if your computer is still experiencing problems. It’s a good idea even if you believe you’ve cleaned up the mess because malware can still be hidden on your machine. You will need to back up your files before you do this.

 

How do I know what information has been taken?

 

• It’s very hard to tell what’s been taken. Not every infection steals your data. Some just serve unwanted ads. Others poison your search result or steer you to Web sites you don’t want to see. Others log your every keystroke. The anti-virus vendors have extensive databases about what the known infections do and don’t do. Comparing the results from your virus scans to those entries will give you a good idea about what criminals may have snatched up.

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Obama, the Hustler

31 03 2009

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Hustle (Hŭs’əl):

v. 1. To jostle or shove roughly. 2. To usher hurriedly or urgently…. 4. Slang. a. To obtain (money) in questionable ways. b. To sell by high-pressure means. 5. Slang. To induce (someone) to gamble in a game set up against him.

~Eowyn

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Oshama

editor’s note

March 31, 2009

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/03/oshama_1.html

 

This image comes from a woman who prefers to be known as Jill, one of the artists on the staff of iOwnTheWorld. She titles it “Oshama.” Feel free to share it with your friends.

sham-wow





No Honor For This Old Man

31 03 2009

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John McCain & his supporters have made much of his sense of honor. Well, there’s precious little “honor” on display here. If it weren’t for Sarah, McCain would have lost by an even greater margin. And this is how this POS is repaying Sarah?

~Eowyn

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McCain Won’t Endorse Palin for 2012

http://www.politicususa.com/en/McCain-Palin-2012

 

McCain, the rino

McCain, the rino

John McCain was on Meet the Press today, and he gave an interesting answer when he was asked about supporting Sarah Palin for 2012. He only said that Palin should compete, and talked about all the good candidates the GOP has for 2012. He gave a let’s wait and see answer to supporting Palin.

When host David Gregory asked McCain if he would support Palin in 2012, he answered, “I’d like to see her compete. I think we’ve got some very good candidates: Jon Huntsman and–the problem when I run down these names, I always leave, leave out a, a name–Bobby Jindal, Tim Pawlenty. There’s, there’s so many. There’s a lot of good, fresh talent out there. On specifically supporting Palin, he said, “Oh, I’d have to see who the candidates are and, and what the situation is at the time. But have no doubt of my respect, admiration and love for Sarah and her family.”

That certainly sounds like an answer that a former nominee would give about a running mate who he didn’t see eye to eye with. The Palin and McCain camps are still trading jabs and blame over who was at fault for last year’s defeat. McCain could be a big problem for Palin, especially if he endorses someone else for the 2012 primary. I could see McCain endorsing Tim Pawlenty or Bobby Jindal. Above everything else, McCain is a good party soldier and he support whoever the nominee is.

The McCain/Palin relationship is reminiscent of the Kerry/Edwards situation in 2004. The two didn’t seem to like each other. Edwards was added to the ticket because he was supposed to be the young star that would push Kerry over the top. After they lost both sides blamed each other, and Kerry never gave a thought to endorsing Edwards in 2008. It is obvious there is some bad blood between the McCain and Palin camps, and this could cause a bit of embarrassment for her in the 2012 primary.





Earth Hour? What Earth Hour?

31 03 2009

Here’s yet more evidence that Lefties are rank hypocrites.

~Eowyn

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Al Gore ignores ‘Earth Hour’
Driveway to Nashville mansion flooded with electricity
Posted: March 29, 2009 5:25 pm Eastern
WorldNetDaily

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=93315

  al-bore1

 

Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” may have inspired many to participate in yesterday’s “Earth Hour” by switching off their lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., but maybe the former vice president didn’t get the memo.

 

Drew Johnson, the president of the Tennessee Center for Policy Research, decided to drive by Gore’s mansion in Nashville at 8:48 p.m. and records that floodlights were on illuminating the driveway leading up to the main quarter.

“ pulled up to Al’s house, located in the posh Belle Meade section of Nashville, at 8:48 p.m. – right in the middle of Earth Hour,” he wrote on his blog. “I found that the main spotlights that usually illuminate his 9,000 square foot mansion were dark, but several of the lights inside the house were on.”

 

He added: “The kicker, though, were the dozen or so floodlights grandly highlighting several trees and illuminating the driveway entrance of Gore’s mansion. I [kid] you not, my friends, the savior of the environment couldn’t be bothered to turn off the gaudy lights that show off his goofy trees.”

 

Earth Hour was deemed a huge success by its organizers, the World Wildlife Fund. The group estimated that 1 billion worldwide took part.

 

From an Antarctic research base and the Great Pyramids of Egypt, from the Colosseum in Rome to the Empire State building in New York, illuminated patches of the globe went dark last night to highlight what the group believes is a man-made threat of climate change. Time zone by time zone, nearly 4,000 cities and towns in 88 countries dimmed nonessential lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., according to organizers.

 

WWF called the event, which began in Australia in 2007 and grew last year to 400 cities worldwide, “the world’s first-ever global vote about the future of our planet.”

 

The United Nations’ top climate official, Yvo de Boer, called the event a clear sign that the world wants negotiators seeking a climate change agreement to set an ambitious course to fight global warming.

 

The event was initiated with hopes of impacting talks in Bonn this week to craft a deal to control emissions of the heat-trapping gases supposedly responsible for “global warming.” The talks are due to culminate in Copenhagen this December.

 

“Earth Hour was probably the largest public demonstration on climate change ever,” de Boer told delegates from 175 nations. “Its aim was to tell every government representative to seal a deal in Copenhagen. The world’s concerned citizens have given the negotiations an additional and very clear mandate.”





The Other Bill

31 03 2009

There are two men named Bill whom I utterly loathe. One is Bill Ayers; the other is the unfunny so-called comedian, Bill Maher – he who lauded the “courage” of the terrorists who flew two passenger jets into the twin towers of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.

~Eowyn

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Video: Maher “salutes” American troops

posted at 1:35 pm on March 30, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/03/30/video-maher-salutes-american-troops/

 

I stopped watching Bill Maher a long time ago, and it’s moments like this that remind me why he’s a waste of broadcast air time. Maher complains that we need to bring home the troops from World War II by pulling out of Germany and Japan, and gives us this pithy little “salute” to American fighting forces:

Forget about bringing the troops home from Iraq. We need to get the troops home from World War II. Can anybody tell me why, in 2009, we still have more than 50,000 troops in Germany and 30,000 in Japan? At some point, these people are going to have to learn to rape themselves. [boos] I’ll ignore that.

Recall, if you will, when Maher claimed that the 9/11 terrorists had more courage than Air Force pilots and/or Navy commanders. “We have been the cowards. Lobbing cruise missiles from two thousand miles away. That’s cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building. Say what you want about it. Not cowardly. You’re right.” ABC cut ties with Maher after that statement, leading to his HBO show.

Will HBO keep Maher around after this despicable comment? Probably, unless enough people complain about it. HBO has less pressure in its subscription model; with no advertisers to boycott, HBO won’t have to worry about lost revenue in the traditional sense. If subscribers start lining up to cancel and cite Maher as a reason, however, that could have some impact.

I don’t watch the show anyway, as I said before, so I don’t really give a damn whether HBO gives him a platform or not. Maher crossed over to despicable years ago. Maybe it serves a good purpose to have a spotlight trained on him; we can find more examples of how the Left hates the military, rather than hearing them insist that they love the troops while trying their best to keep them from college campuses and recruiters out of their neighborhoods.

Update: Commenter 1GoodDaddy offers this information, for those wishing to communicate their displeasure with Maher:

How can I contact HBO to express my opinions about their programming?

You may contact HBO’s Consumer Affairs Department at 212-512-1208 Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM Eastern Time. You can also write to us using the link below

Feel free to go at it.  I think, though, that HBO will tend to see this as an endorsement of Maher’s relevance than any threat to their business.





We’re So Screwed

31 03 2009

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We already know that the social security system will be in arrears when the bulk of the Baby Boomer generation retire. But the news has gone from bad to worse. Whatever surplus we thought there was in the mythic “social security fund” has just evaporated. THERE IS NO SOCIAL SECURITY SURPLUS!

 

P.S. I’m substituting for our Fearless Leader, Gio. He’s on a fact-finding mission, returning Thursday.

 

~Eowyn

 

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Social Security Surplus Already Gone

Tuesday, March 31, 2009 11:37 AM
By: Marc Davis

http://moneynews.newsmax.com/streettalk/social_security_surplus/2009/03/31/197950.html

 

Old boomers

Another victim of the recession has cashed in its chips — the Social Security surplus.

Expected to survive until 2017, according to many educated estimates, the stock decline has instead wiped the surplus out completely.

It happened in the blink of an accountant’s eye, as we were all paying attention to other serious financial problems, says Kevin Hassett of the American Enterprise Institute, commenting on this unamusing disappearing act in a column for Bloomberg.com.

“Social Security has for years been the near-term bright spot in the federal budget,” writes Hassett.

“Each year the program has raised $50 billion to $100 billion more in payroll taxes than it paid out in benefits.”

Opponents of Social Security reform often cited these surpluses as a good reason to postpone any attempt to fix the system.

But with American workers losing their jobs at an almost unprecedented rate, Social Security payroll revenues have declined substantially, says Hassett. Recession-driven early retirements have also increased, adding to the drawdown of funds.

Social Security reform has not been enacted, in part, because the Congressional Budget Office has been issuing excessively rosy estimates of surpluses, thus creating the unwarranted impression that the system is on firm financial ground, according to Hassett.

The decline means that the Treasury Department could be forced to borrow an additional $700 billion from foreign investors like China and Japan just as those investors seem unwilling to hold the trillions in bonds they already own.

“The Social Security trust fund, though technically in balance, is going to put huge pressures on taxpayers very soon,” warns Sen. Judd Gregg, the senior Republican on the Senate Budget Committee.

 





I Am Honored!

30 03 2009

They have no idea what they have done for my ego. They have no idea what they have done for my self-worth. They have no idea how close I was to calling it quits and giving up this blogging gig. They have no idea how much they have vindicated and validated my thoughts, rants,  and musings.

They used my copy without my permission, so I'm using their graphic without their permission.

They used my copy without my permission, so I'm using their graphic without their permission.

The they I speak of is…. “The Village Voice” of course. Seriously, the Village Voice blog picked up Giovanni’s World in one of their blogs titled “Running Scared”. Here’s the part they printed (without my permission I might add)…

“If Comrade Obama had any class, he would politely back out of this invitation,” said Giovanni’s World. “I have very low expectations of our president so I don’t expect him to man-up.”

Just in case you want to check out an extremely far left rag from New York City, here’s the URL http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/archives/2009/03/rightbloggers_o_6.php

Feel free to check them out, but let me warn you, their content really sucks! I only did all this to poke them in the eye. And, I enjoyed it!

Gio-