internet security

Why am I getting an insecure website warning?

Episode 1471

Kimberly from Carlsbad, CA
Browser warning

Kimberly is having issues with her U-Verse internet access after wiring her computer directly. She sees things on her browser she doesn't like. Her "IT guy" says it's an IP issue. Leo says someone is overthinking it. It's not an IP issue. IPv6 is invisible, so that shouldn't make a difference. Not all sites are secure, the only ones that are should be the ones she's giving private information to. And a log in form could be secure while a page is not. Yahoo isn't the greatest ISP to rely on, either.

Should I have to pay to have my router updated?

Episode 1456

Mark from Northridge, CA
Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 router

Mark got the Nighthawk router and now he's hearing he has to buy a service agreement to have it updated for security after owning it for 90 days. Leo says that's outrageous. Security updates should be included in a $200 router. Paying $129 a year is ridiculous. But we expect really cheap gear now and with a single tech call, they can lose their profit margin. It's just the nature of the technology business. Security is a basic need, though, and that should be factored in.

Is using your Facebook login for another website safe?

Episode 1450

Joseph from New Jersey
Facebook

Ivan wants to know what he's giving away when he logs into a site using his Facebook ID. Leo says that's called Single Sign-on, which makes it easier to sign in. Many services, including Google and Twitter also offer it as a convenience. It's a user verification system that doesn't require him to create an account, nor does it give them access to his account. But it gives Facebook, Google, and Twitter access to more information about where he visits. It's safe to use it, but if he's concerned, he can create a dummy account that he'll only use for that purpose.

Should I buy a hardware firewall?

Episode 1448

Tom from Madison, WI
CUJO smart firewall

Tom wants to know if the CUJO Smart Firewall is a good idea. Leo says that he already has a firewall with his wireless router. That handles about 80% of all bad traffic. Also using OpenDNS can filter out even more. Then he could have a software firewall to handle the rest. Everything that CUJO does, he can do with other services that cost less or free. Mesh Routers also offer the exact same protections.

Is using your Facebook login for another website safe?

Episode 1430

Ivan from Farmington, MN
Facebook

Ivan wants to know what he's giving away when he logs into a site using his Facebook ID. Leo says that's called Single Sign-on, which makes it easier to sign in. Many services, including Google and Twitter also offer it as a convenience. It's a user verification system that doesn't require him to create an account, nor does it give them access to his account. But it gives Facebook, Google, and Twitter access to more information about where he visits. It's safe to use it, but if he's concerned, he can create a dummy account that he'll only use for that purpose.

Are Java updates safe?

George from California

Episode 1397

George wants to know if he should update his Java? Is it OK to update? Jason says that it's often OK to ignore them, but if it's an important security update, or if it's required for him to use a website, then it's a good idea to stay updated. It's definitely safer security wise to do so. But Jason also recommends getting rid of Java altogether. When in doubt, though, always go directly to Oracle to get updates. That way he'll know it's always official.

Are internet enabled security cameras secure?

Episode 1380

Tom from Madison, WI
Google Nest Cam

Tom wants to add a security camera to his home. He wants to know which one to get and how secure they are. Can they be hacked? Leo says that there's a lot of concern over the "internet of things," which includes cameras. They don't get updated very often. Foscam made cameras that were easily hackable, so Leo suggests not getting them. He won't want to get the low end, off brand stuff either. It won't be secure.

Can I use the same password for websites?

Episode 1377

Caleb from San Diego, CA
Password

Caleb wants to know if it's safe to use the same password across different web accounts. Leo says no, because once one site gets hacked, they can use that password information to guess the passwords for other sites. Many do this, and it's how the Turkish Crime Family was able to hack over a million iCloud accounts. Password vaults make different passwords for every site and you have only one password to open the vault. But that's not on the internet anywhere, he'd just remember that. It's much safer that way.