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Old 06-10-2015, 08:22 PM   #1
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Default 5 important security questions...

I have some important security questions that I would like answered.

1. If you were to strip down a web browser to remove all plugins and Javacsript... are there any browser exploits that would work...? Can it still be hacked..?

2. How would you go about downloading something like Tor or Tails properly, given that the NSA has packet injection systems like QUANTUMINSERT (see Snowden docs)..? Couldn't they just send you a fake version of Tor, which has spying built into it..?

3. Can the BIOS of a computer communicate with the network, or not...? I've heard about BIOS keyloggers, but how could the BIOS even transfer that keylogged data to anywhere else on the system...? Surely, unless the main operating system requested data from the BIOS, then it couldn't obtain it in the first place...? Surely the BIOS can't just push out this data over the network by itself...?

4. If you were to use a tool like DBAN to totally write over the hard drive, would that totally wipe out any viruses...? I guess this goes back to the question on whether viruses can really hide in BIOS or not...

5. If you were to use a recording app on a phone or computer, would this prevent someone listening to the microphone in the background... picking up background noise...?? I have noticed on a computer that a microphone can only be accessed by one application at a time... Like, if you use Audacity and Windows sound recorder at the same time, it won't let you.... So, if I had an app constantly recording in the background, would that prevent someone from using a hack to listen to me in the background...?


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Old 07-27-2015, 02:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: 5 important security questions...

I have limited knowledge but I'd say this:

1. Yes but less likely. The more software you have on your machine the more prone you would be to exploits, as any software can be exploited and that's why there are fixes, patches, etc. Current browsers are actively developed and exploits are closed. Hard to say how active the developers are of various plugins will be.

2. Dont know

3. Some BIOS's are actually designed to communicate over the network. Those with IPMI come to mind. So theoretically possible? I'd say yes. If the firmware is advanced enough to do so and the hardware is available, why not?

4. Most viruses today come from overseas and are only designed to trick users into sending them money (crypto wall, etc) or sell them things via injecting ads into browsers. A simple reformat will eliminate most of these, even rootkits. I've never bothered with a low level format for a virus.

5. dont know.
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