Having problems with malware on your computer?

Are you having problems with malware on your computer? No matter how good your endpoint protection is (anti-virus, anti-everything), it will still not know or be able to catch everything. So it always helps to have a secondary scanning program to find things when you suspect you are having malware issues. I wrote a few days ago about what to do with stubborn viruses.

You know you have malware issues when your firewall tells you that your computer is visiting websites that you didn’t go to. Ok so since most people don’t look at the firewall, it also is obvious when your computer does crazy things that it shouldn’t do. This is things like not starting a program, not connecting to a website, not doing something that it used to be able to do. When others do not have the same problems, it tends to be malware.

Having problems with malware on your computer?It used to be that when troubleshooting computers hardware issues were the main cause of problems. Now it is software issues. Malware is the #1 reason in most environments when things don’t work right. The problem of constant internet access and browser usage has opened the door to these gremlins. Even email based malware is getting very sophisticated. I have seen people get infected just by looking at the email, and not even opening the attachment. Fortunately Sophos catches this almost every time, but nothing is perfect.

I have found using Malwarebytes to find many issues that other endpoint protection misses. It has fixed issues dozens of times for me. This is my favorite secondary protection. However I have also tried online free virus scanning websites, and for the most they are useless.

The only online free virus scanning website that looked like it really might be doing something is Eset, and that was a small download, update and scan. It took probably a half hour to scan the system, which is more realistic time for a full scan. It never found anything, but neither did any other software used on that computer, so it might have been a false error. It was flagged by the firewall as suspicious behavior.

I ran into a new situation where the firewall keeps identifying a Command and Control virus but these tools above are not finding it. I am running Spybot – Search and Destroy which is also excellent. It has a better reputation than Malwarebytes, so you might want to add that to your list as well.

So my order of operations is obviously: Sophos, Malwarebytes, Eset, Spybot. Good luck in protecting your computer!

Safari has issues with Flash

I have talked about Tidal before and I enjoy the service. I tried to access it today using the newest Mac OS and Safari browser, and had issues. The problem was when I played a song. It asked me to install Flash. Ok, I installed the newest version of Flash. Then I tried to play the song again and it stuttered and mostly didn’t play the song. When I listened to it in Firefox it started and not a single stutter.

This isn’t the first time that Safari has issues with Flash. For years I have tried to use Safari and it has always had flash issues. Since many free web games are flash, Safari isn’t a good browser to play free flash games. I used to use Chrome to play those games, but since have used Firefox. It seems to be more reliable, and Google as I wrote before doesn’t deserve support.

Safari has issues with FlashYes I know that Flash is being discontinued by Adobe. However it isn’t that way yet. Unity seems a natural successor to Flash and many of those free games were remarkable in what they could do. I don’t mind that flash is dying. It has been painful for IT people to support with constant updates. Plus the average person gets tired of always being constantly being asked to update. Even when it is set for auto updates, it requires things like rebooting or closing applications to fix. Annoying I agree.

Flash was a good idea but terribly executed. Many great ideas in IT occur, but get corrupted by so many reasons. Java was a great idea, but it became a mess. Safari was a good idea, but Apple should just give it up. I have tried to use Safari time after time, but there are always issues that prevent me from using it. Besides Flash, Safari has also had problems with compatibility with many websites or crashing. I think that third-party browsers are more stable just because they don’t try to integrate into the weaknesses of the underlying OS.

Perhaps when Flash is no longer popular I will give Safari another try, but I doubt it will be any more compelling than the alternatives.