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Old 04-08-2014, 10:04 PM   #1
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Default How safe are internet forums in general?

Hey, everyone. New to this forum and wanting to inquire about the safety of internet forums in general after getting a malware reading for a particular forum I have used in the past (and still frequent, although only after the admin. declared the site safe again).

I know that malware can be anywhere on the web, but wonder if forums might happen to be particularly "good" or "bad" places to expect it to crop up?

Thanks very much for your time!
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Old 04-09-2014, 06:54 AM   #2
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Default Re: How safe are internet forums in general?

A forum website as such is no more of a "good or bad" place to get any infection from than any other website however the fact that a forum allows pretty much any user to post content of their choice it does potentially open it up to external links that certainly can increase the risk of you getting infected with some form of malware / spyware / virus.
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Old 04-15-2014, 10:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: How safe are internet forums in general?

Forums are really no more or less dangerous than any other website online, it does depend on the people and type of forum a little of course but in general you wont have a problem if you are smart and careful, just like with any toher website on the internet.

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Old 04-15-2014, 02:12 PM   #4
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Default Re: How safe are internet forums in general?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tmc8295 View Post
Forums are really no more or less dangerous than any other website online, it does depend on the people and type of forum a little of course but in general you wont have a problem if you are smart and careful, just like with any toher website on the internet.

-Thomas
-Certified Computer Technician
In general I would agree, particularly with the point about being smart and careful (better than any AV/security software that will ever exist), however I would also note that one things forums (like blogs) make heavy use of is off-the-shelf software utilities such as phpBB, wordpress, joomla, drupal etc.

These software packages are popular targets for vulnerability research as a successful exploit can affect a huge number of websites, which - by definition in the case of forums - hold a lot of user account credentials for harvesting. If the site also makes use of some e-commerce cart software (such as OpenCart) then this adds payment details into the potential 'rewards' and hence further incentivises any potential attacker.

Without wanting to change the subject of this thread, this is also why such a pronounced reaction has taken place as a result of heartbleed - because OpenSSL is such a core technology.
Much like economics it is supply and demand: Windows > Mac > Linux exploits, not because any one of them is less secure (ignoring third-party software) but because there is more potential victims to target.
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Old 04-16-2014, 02:36 AM   #5
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Default Re: How safe are internet forums in general?

Hi I am new here too I have to agree forums usually are fairly safe places especially those that have better reputations and are not sleazy. Watching videos that others post or downloading a program that someone shares can pose dangers.

I wouldn't blame the person though who posted the content whatever it might be as they might be innocent themselves. I use antivirus scans and malware detectors to keep my computer safe and to not pass on a problem to someone else.
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Old 04-17-2014, 02:28 AM   #6
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Default Re: How safe are internet forums in general?

A FIREWALL is your best friend on the internet. Followed real closely by a solid ANTIVIRUS program.
I run my own website and it's my responsibility to make sure none of my files have been compromised. At the same time the host provides for a reasonable level of security on their end. Although, there's always the sleazy types that code in nasty things to infect your computer.
But on your end it's your responsibility to surf safely and use common sense when visiting forums or any web site for that matter.

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(Shameless plug coming, look out) They're having a sale on a 2 year subscription of Security Suite 7. I have it. Worth every penny. Just renewed for 2 more years.
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