Monday, May 23, 2011

Assignment 1

I found this article to be very interesting and I must admit, shocking as well. I have a Facebook account and I had no idea how easy it was for people to gain access to my account. The article explains that Firesheep is a free Firefox extension that collects data broadcast over an unprotected Wi-Fi network without using SSL. You turn it on, and by default it collects cookies for Facebook, Twitter and 24 other sites. Then you can side jack the account and gain access under the acquired identity.  It is so surprising to me how easy it was for Gary LosHuertos (the author) to gain access to so many people’s accounts, in 1 minute.  Honestly, I am unsure how I would go about creating a VPN that would create a secure tunnel through the unprotected connection. It is not shocking or surprising to me that most users don't have access to one. I was very shocked at how many people he sent a message to and they did nothing about it, however, as we all know we receive a ton of junk mail, so honestly, if someone had sent me a message such as that there is a good possibly that I would ignore it as well. However, if anyone sent me a message and stated my exact location, I would definitely take the message more seriously and take steps to prevent this from happening.  I especially liked the author’s closing statement, “No matter how many security measures we provide to the world, there will always be people who leave the door open, even after they've had an intruder. The weakest link in security has been, and always will be, the user's judgment.” I completely agree with this. If I had gotten a message such as this I would be completely freaked out, and scared. Nobody wants anyone, especially a stranger to have access to their accounts, the author is completely correct in saying this could destroy relationships, I mean if someone, anyone has access to your account information they can write or post anything they wish. After reading this article it makes me glad that I do not use a public Wi-Fi connection.