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Old June 29th, 2004, 02:06 PM   #1
 
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Is it safe to have my NLE on the internet?

I got a brand new G5 and I don't want ANY INTERNET BUGS to come along and screw it up. However, I'm sure it will be necessary from time to time to down or upload stuff to my computer. Do I dare put on Anti-Virus Software (might screw up other programs)? Do I even dare get on the net at all? If I do get on, what's the safest way to protect my vital system?

Suggestions, please.

thanks!!
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Old June 29th, 2004, 02:09 PM   #2
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There are almost no viruses for Macs. If you are especially worried, purchase a firewall to protect your computer. I would avoid any 3rd party software solutions. Many can cause issues with rendering, capturing, etc.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 04:37 PM   #3
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3rd party software is generally fine - just avoid Norton like the plague, or it's the plague your mac will catch!

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Old June 29th, 2004, 04:55 PM   #4
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Just a word of caution: not all the problems on the internet come
from virusses (although the most do indeed). Keep in mind that
there are also "hackers" out there that could pay you a visit so
to speak. Ofcourse this doesn't happen often and the Mac
platform is less targeted, but I thought you should know.

The best and safest way is to simply not connect it. Use a different
machine for that (whether PC or MAC) and transfer files on CD/
DVD/portable harddisk etc.

BUT, if that is not an option you can certainly hook up your
computer to the net. In this case a Mac is more secure since
there are almost no virusses etc. as Jeff explained.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 07:03 PM   #5
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don't worry about it.
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Old June 29th, 2004, 10:34 PM   #6
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I got Norton SystemWorks I use, and the OSX factory firewall I use.

Also, when i'm using FCP, I disable my "network connections".
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Old June 30th, 2004, 09:59 AM   #7
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If you have dialup internet, you don't have to worry about much because you're not exposed most of the time.

If you have constant access (i.e., DSL or cable modem) then you need to be concerned. Especially with cable modems.

The good news? It is so easy and cheap to be secure, there's no reason not to be. If you have DSL or a cable modem, obviously you were provided a modem by your internet provider. All you have to do is run down to your local Best Buy or Circuit City or whatever you have in your area that provides good but cheap electronics, and get yourself a router (wireless or wired) with an integrated firewall. Almost all of them have it. Then come home and stick it between your modem and your computer.

They cost so little these days, there is no reason in the world not to get one. Plus it allows you to connect multiple computers together.

Now there's the other question - adware and spyware. I don't believe this is much of a problem on Macs, but for PCs they do make ad removal software. But before you go there, make sure your web browser security settings are set up high enough to warn you of any activity you think you should be made aware of. My suggestion is to maximize your security first, and then try it out until you feel like it's really obstructing or annoying you. And then gradually ease security until you are comfortable and not inconvenienced by constantly blocked contents, or constant warnings that aren't very helpful.

Also, there are several software applications that not only help you remove adware/spyware/scumware, but also that constantly monitor your internet connection to make sure nothing is installed without being logged (and blocked). Lavasoft, which makes Adaware, also makes Ad-watch, which does this monitoring, while barely consuming any resources. And again, I don't think this is very common on Macs. Spyware tends to target PCs.

And keep your operating system updated with your vendor's latest security patches and packs!

There's no reason to pull the plug on your system. You obviously need an internet connection to download files now and then, and to make system updates/upgrades, etc. This is true whether you have a PC or a Mac. Just follow these practices and I can guarantee you that you don't have to worry.

Here's a test to see how your security is right now. Very simple online test. It also provides you all the information you need to know about securing your internet connection.

https://grc.com/x/ne.dll?bh0bkyd2

Just click 'Proceed' and then click one of the buttons in the "ShieldsUP!! Services" box. Pay close attention to "Common Ports" and "All Service Ports".
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Old July 7th, 2004, 01:20 AM   #8
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He's on a G5. If he goes with a router with NAT, there is really NO SUCH adware/spyware on a mac, nor are any website transferable scripts that can effect OSX. I have been online for 6 years with macs and PC's. No problems at all. Just be smart in what you download and accept as email. Almost ALL problems which occur do so because of ignorant users.

NOW, if your using a PC, then you have much to be concerned about and would follow every bit of advice that the above post addressed.
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Old July 7th, 2004, 06:31 PM   #9
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If he uses wireless there is a passing concern as well. The real truth is that nothing on the net is safe at well, even SSL. But the real question is, are you worth hacking? Most hackers are looking for a challenge. Macs come with a built-in software firewall and all ports off. You have to turn them on basically, you'd have to turn on windows file sharing, ftp, telnet, web sharing... If you are just surfing the web the risk is very, very minimal. Now if you follow links to fake ebay sites and enter your username and password...

Macs do not have many viruses. There are some things out there that could potentially cause you problems, but it is very remote. Any sensitive data? Create a secure disk image using the disk utility. You can use top notch encryption on it and use it to store your sensitive data. I have a special disk image with all my passwords for banking and stuff, when I need the info, I click on the disk image and it asks me for a password. Once entered, it mounts a disk on my desktop just like another hard drive. I open it, make whatever changes I want, and then eject it. This closes the disk image and keeps everything encrypted! This is basically what File Vault does for 10.3.x, but without the compatibility issues! It is also an easy way to send encrypted files... just tell the recipient the password over the phone.
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Old July 9th, 2004, 08:00 AM   #10
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This is probably the main reason why I will buy a MAC as my NLE, I don't want to have to worry about spyware/adware when I hook up to the net. Also, I'm suspecting that there are a lot less chances for bugs/crashes then there would be with a PC, am I right?
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Old July 9th, 2004, 08:51 AM   #11
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Woah no - the Mac ad campaign for crashing PCs is based on the old Windows 98 system. I work in an environment that is very cross platform, and we've gone through many variations of configurations, and I can tell you that at this day and age, crashing on either of these platforms is due to user configuration error, or other special circumstances.

OS9 was a different story, as was Windows 98/ME. Everything on the Windows NT platform is stable as a marble slab, as OSX is in comparison to OS9. That includes Win2000, Win XP both Home and Pro.
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Old July 9th, 2004, 08:53 AM   #12
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But what of all these virus and adware concerns for a PC hooked up to the net? Doesn't a MAC have an advantage in this regards?
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Old July 9th, 2004, 09:00 AM   #13
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Yes, it's true. But don't be fooled - as you can witness from all the security hubbub over the past few months, as Macs become more common, they become a more viable market for both scumware producers, and virus creators. It's not impossible for these things to be created for Macs - there are many ways these things can be done. Apple is slowly being put under the same heat that Microsoft has been under for a while now, as its software becomes more popular. Fact is, all vendors of software generally have security holes. But usually the biggest security hole is the user...

By that I mean EVERY computer is a disaster waiting to happen if the user doesn't know the basics of security. I don't ever have a problem with spyware/adware/viruses/trojans on the PCs I administer - and it doesn't take much to be safe.
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Old July 9th, 2004, 12:16 PM   #14
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Let's also be clear though, one advantage of a mac is that it has root off by default and ports blocked/off. Also, in order to install software, you have to authenticate. There are a few basic things that make macs more secure out of the box I'd say, but they've been proven vulnerable again and again although not to the extent of Windows machines, or more specifically IE on Windows. I would argue that the Mac OS is a bit better preventing the user from creating security holes. But its a fairly close race...
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Old July 9th, 2004, 04:20 PM   #15
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NLE online

I don't use mine on-line as a rule. It's just too damn expensive to take the risk from what could be totally and easily avoided without spending any additional money for protection. I totally agree with Rob. Use a cheaper PC for internet and downloading purposes. There will never be a regret this way.
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