Tom Olzak

Posts Tagged ‘google’

IDCATU strikes Google, Apple, and Microsoft…

In apple, Business Continuity, Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Microsoft, Safari on February 21, 2013 at 20:47

The Register published an article today describing Adblock Plus angst over Google seemingly trying to take down their ad blocking software on Android.  See Ad-titan Google blocks Adblock Plus in Android security tweak • The Register.

While reading the article, I began to get the feeling that Google is intentionally blocking Adblock because it interferes with Google store functionality.  Interesting…

This is one more reason I am very pis… uh… angry this week.  When I first purchased my iMac last year, I was able to do 99% of what I could do on my Windows 7 laptop.  Today, Google Chrome for Mac is significantly crippled on many sites.  Further, I have to use IE 10 on my Windows 8 laptop to have access to several features I use during research.  We seem to be going backward.

When I started in IT (1983), I encountered a score of different standards from the same number of companies.  It was a compatibility nightmare until business simply accepted the IBM PC and MS-DOS as the de facto standard.  Vendors got on board or went out of business.

During the growth of the Internet, browser choices had gotten to the point that I could use the browser of my choice–the browser I felt most comfortable with–and I could be fairly confident that I would be able to be productive.  This was until recently…

Speaking only from personal experience, I believe I am suffering from a disease spreading across Microsoft, Google, and Apple: IDCATU syndrome.  As it spreads, market share and out doing the competition become more important than user productivity.  Those suffering from I-Don’t-Care-About-The-User use double-talk to assuage the unwary into believing incompatibility between solutions is for their own good. BS.

I am seriously considering moving everything to open source.  The problem is that IDCATU also forces the big players to force the creative and unafflicted to the sidelines.  Some people are simply getting too uppity for their own good… and ours.

Interesting Find: Chrome exposes links

In Cybercrime, Google Chrome, Insider risk on October 6, 2009 at 07:51

Have you ever wanted to see where a link takes you or whether it actually downloads what you expect?  If so, you know there are add-ons for FireFox and other browsers that provide this functionality.  However, I just noticed this morning while working within my research SandBoxie sandbox that Google Chrome apparently provides this functionality out-of-the-box.


When I hover my mouse icon over a link, the destination or file references appears in the lower left corner of my browser window.  Not perfect, but a nice quick-check.

For Software Downloads, Go Directly to the Source

In Cybercrime, Hacking on October 2, 2009 at 10:54

Search engine results for download sites offering hard to get or difficult to find popular software are increasingly used by attackers to ply their insidious craft.  Users looking for an easy way to circumvent vendor constraints or to find popular free software must practice caution.  This isn’t a new warning, but it apparently needs repeating.

The following appeared yesterday in an article at The Register:

Surfers also need to be wary about hunting for Microsoft’s new freebie anti-malware scanner via search engines. Websense further warns that scareware distributors have poisoned search engine results so that sites passing off fake anti-virus scanners appear prominently in searches for Microsoft Security Essentials.

Both the Google Wave and Microsoft Security Essentials attacks rely on black hat Search Engine Optimisation techniques. Wrongdoers typically break into well-established sites and create webpages stuffed full with relevant keywords, cross-linked to other sites compromised in the same way. The tactic is designed to trick search engines into pushing doctored sites higher in search engine indexes for relevant terms.

Source:  Google Wave search poisoned by scareware scammers, John Leyden, The Register, 1 October 2009

And there’s more.  The following appeared in a related article:

Two ongoing scams are tricking Google and other search engines into prominently displaying millions of compromised webpages that attempt to hijack end users’ computers or steal their credit card numbers, researchers said.

One of the attacks is being used to direct people searching the web to an online store hawking pirated copies of popular software titles. Plugging the phrase “cheap vista for students” into Google, for instance, returned more than 19 million results, many of which redirected users to a site called

A separate attack is the work of a botnet dubbed ASProx, which injects malicious links into misconfigured ASP webpages. Users who enter a wide array of search queries, such as “used corvette parts“, received results pointing to a page that redirected to, which attempted to serve a hostile Adobe Flash file that installs malware

Source:  Google results flog millions of compromised webpages, Dan Goodin, The Register, 1 October 2009

So if you or someone you know is looking for a free AV scanner or is trying to get their hands on an invite for the newest beta, go directly to the source; avoid second-hand sites unless you are certain they are trustworthy.

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