Internet and Web

Your internet connection, web sites and services.

How can I make sure open source software is safe?

Dave from Concord, CA

Episode 1296

Tony wants to know how to check to be sure the ISO of open source software is legit. Leo says that an ISO is found to be legit by signing. A hash has to be generated in order to provide proof of a legitimate ISO. If the ISO has changed, then the hash would be modified. There's also a signing key, which is based on GPG encryption. It has to be authenticated by the developers of the software.

Does the Tiny Hardware Firewall give you extra protection over a VPN?

Episode 1296

Ron from Baltimore, MD
Tiny Hardware Firewall

Ron has the Tiny Hardware Firewall, which he likes. Once he's connected to the VPN inside of it, what does the firewall do, though? Leo says that the firewall is the first level of protection. It acts as a router and is the attack surface, not the computer. A router is a dumb device that doesn't know what the attack is and ignores it, unless there's a security flaw inside the system. Like a router at home, the Tiny Hardware Firewall gives a little extra protection, though.

Twitter Gets Hacked, Exposing 32 Million Accounts

Episode 1296

Twitter security officials have admitted that the social media site was hacked this week, exposing the passwords of over 32 million twitter accounts. Though hackers posted the passwords online, officials say that they are confident no other information was obtained.

Leo says that if you are a Twitter user, you may want to change your password, and even better, use a password vault to generate it.

Read more at TechCrunch.com.

Johnny Jet on Travel

Episode 1295

Johnny Jet is in Alaska this weekend, going hiking. The airfares are so cheap from LA - $220, he couldn't resist a weekend getaway. But ironically, he's never been on an Alaskan cruise.

Website and app - Alaska Tour Saver, offers 2 for 1 deals after an initial membership of $100.

There's also FindYourPark.com. This year is the 100th anniversary of the national parks, and this site will tell you where the nearest national park is. Go now or just after school starts to avoid the rush.

Is the Tiny Hardware Firewall a good idea for hotspotting?

Episode 1294

Chris from San Marcos, CA
Tiny Hardware Firewall

Chris is looking at the Tiny Hardware Firewall. He thinks it's a great idea, but what VPN client should he use? TOR? Leo says that TOR and VPN are different things. VPN or "virtual private networks" are tunnels bored through the internet, but TOR encrypts it. It is great and Leo uses it when he travels or is using a public Wi-Fi access point. It just fits in his pocket, too. He should be careful when he's joining a public hotspot. He'll get most of the benefits from a VPN, though, if he just surfs to sites using https.

Is there a streaming alternative to live TV on cable?

Episode 1294

Ralph from Huntington Beach, CA
Roku 4

Ralph has been victim of the transition from Verizon to Frontier and he's looking for live TV alternatives. What about cable TV over the internet like Vstream? Leo says it depends on the source of the channels they bring. Many are either illegal, or foreign language TV. He could end up with soccer from Ecuador. It's not going to be ABC, ESPN or his local news. It really comes down to content. He'd really be better off going with Roku and then add things like Netflix, HBO, etc.

How can I stream live video with my iPhone?

Episode 1294

Dan from Murietta, CA
Shure MV88 iOS Digital Stereo Microphone

Dan's daughter is graduating from high school on Friday and he wants to be able to broadcast the graduation ceremonies to family all over the world. How can he do it and have great audio? Leo says that everyone has gotten into live video streaming with Periscope, Meerkat, and Facebook Live. The benefit of Facebook is that they'll even save it to his account so that people can watch it any time.

How can I better control my Philips Hue lights?

Episode 1294

JJ from San Francisco, CA
Philips Hue Starter Kit

JJ has the Philips Hue lighting system and his lights turned on in the middle of the night. He's discovered that his landlord shares the same breaker with him and after the power had been cut and restored, the lights came on. Is this common? Leo says that the Philips Hue system is really cool, but it can get reset when the power goes out or if there's some sort of change on the breaker. There's no real way out of it short of convincing Philips to change it.