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Windows XP & 'Ransomware'

 
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OtleyLad



Joined: 13 Jan 2007
Posts: 2737
Location: Otley, West Yorkshire
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 17 8:40 am    Post subject: Windows XP & 'Ransomware'  Reply with quote    

I have 2 old machines running XP - one desktop that I built myself and one old laptop. The laptop has more or less kept up with XP updates but the desktop is beyond help I fear. The desktop I use principaly for the old copy of photoshop that runs on it and web development - uploading via ftp to the various websites I look after . The laptop has a copy of Railmaster (DCC model railway control) - which needs internet access.
Can't get updates for browsers for either machine as far as I can see (as browsers no longer supported on XP).
Any suggestions as to what practical steps can I take (ideally costing nothing of course) to keep the machines relatively safe?

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 33661
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 17 8:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Don't open any links in emails. The weakest part of your system is you.

It's not a complete answer of course, but it's free, very functional, you already know it but a reminder is never a bad plan. It's also most of the answer.

sean
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 41682
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 17 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Don't use either of them except for the purposes you've mentioned and get something more up-to-date for everyday use. (I appreciate that's not free but a lappy for emailing and general web browsing is prety cheap.)

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14799
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Sun May 14, 17 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

sean wrote:
Don't use either of them except for the purposes you've mentioned and get something more up-to-date for everyday use. (I appreciate that's not free but a lappy for emailing and general web browsing is prety cheap.)

Could run Linux for everyday use. Should work on the existing hardware, at worst it might want a bigger (or an extra) HDD.
It might even manage to run the Windows software through WINE or whatever (though tbh I would be surprised).

jema
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 26551
Location: escaped from Swindon
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 17 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I run my accounts on an old XP machine, I would never open a browser on it, or even read emails. I do have to send emails from it, and I am uncomfortable that that means it does receive email.

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14799
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 17 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

The news this morning is full of expectation of more troubles as people get to work and switch on their PC's.
Why haven't the relevant IT departments made a bunch of bootable USB keys with virus checkers and/or system update tools?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32886
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 17 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

the uk's boomers run on a tweaked version of xp

although the current ransomeware stuff is messy it isnt as serious to infrastructure as the stuxnet style of attacks which exploit software to physically destroy hardware components which can be a safety critical part of a potentially dangeroos and/or vital piece of infrastructure plant.

break a valve or speed regulator or whatever and cause a meltdown or take out a power or water supply for months is quite possible, stuxnet and it's children showed it to work in practice on a specific bit of kit in a larger system.

iirc various shadowy gov sponsored organisations have been creating tools for this type of attack for at least a decade.

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