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Topic # 12512 21-Mar-2007 08:41
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Hi,

I turn my Telstra Broadband modem on and off for each session using the power button on the top.
I do this to limit my connect time and hence potential for virus attack.

But I am finding that occassionally it turns itself back on again.

While I could always unplug the power cable, I am curious to know why this is happening.

What do others think or am I nuts??


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BDFL - Memuneh
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Reply # 64493 21-Mar-2007 08:53
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I leave mine on all the time. As for protection against "virus attacks", the problem is not if your modem is on or not, but if your computer is unprotected. Turning the modem off will not protect your PC, because it will be unprotected anyway while the modem is on for your browsing and e-mail tasks.

Do you realise that you being in front of your PC while downloading an e-mail or browsing a website does not make it safer? By the time you notice your PC is infected it's already too late.

You have to shift the focus rom the modem to your computer, using a decent antivirus solution, a good anti-spyware software. And leave the modem always on... Unless you want to save a bit of power.






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  Reply # 64494 21-Mar-2007 08:59
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As MF says, doing what you are doing wont really help. I suggest that you invest in a hardware router that has a SPI firewall built in, Belkin, and Netware come to mind for around $85, this will add Wifi capability and multiple PC functionality as well as adding a appliance level firewall.

Then ensure you have good antivirus and spyware protection installed, I use AVG, costs nothing updates databases daily and does not seem to place to much of an anwanted overhead on the PC.

I have five PCs/Laptops online here 24/7, I dont find any real issues on any of the fronts you raise.

Cyril

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Reply # 64495 21-Mar-2007 09:01
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As I said, I leave my modem on all the time. I have five computers here, with at least three on all the time and connected to the network.








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  Reply # 64502 21-Mar-2007 09:54
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Thanks for prompt comments Guys - much appreciated.

I should have said in my original post that I do run Zonealarm, Avg and Adware for spyware.
So to date, my infection rate has been very low which is probably due in part to the sites I visit.
Also I am about to buy a router to provide WiFi for my laptop.

Hence my desire to power off the modem is just me been ultra cautious.
This is becuase i view the risk from viruses is not just limitied to actively browsing and accepting emails.

Its just annoying that the off button doesnt stay off.



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  Reply # 64506 21-Mar-2007 10:53
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When I was on Telstra Cable using a Motorola 5100 occassionally when I pressed the on/off button on top it didn't work and I had to power the unit down

Regarding security like yourself I run zone alarm too [I now have a SPI firewall in addition as I now use adsl] but that said imho it is good practise to disconnect by any means from the Net if not being used regardless of how many soft or hard firewalls are between your PC[s] and the Net

One should never assume a firewall provides protection, that would assume it has been configured correctly. The best security from the Net is surely no connecton !

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Reply # 64508 21-Mar-2007 11:01
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xlinknz: One should never assume a firewall provides protection, that would assume it has been configured correctly. The best security from the Net is surely no connecton !


Yes, and then you don't have access to e-mail or browsing or other services. You see? No connection is not a solution... Even if you only have a connection while you are using a computer, the network is active and in that short amount of time your PC could have been compromised, and with no warning.

So, five minutes connection a day or always on makes no much difference really. Statistically it's another story, but you are never sure.







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  Reply # 64521 21-Mar-2007 12:21
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I think you misunderstand me !

Currently I have dsl modem with FW/wireless router with FW/PCs with ZoneAlarm

When my wife and I don't use the Net the dsl modem is turned off i.e. the Net is on as needed, the only time it is on over night is for Bittorrenting etc

BTW we only use webmail

note the wifi setup has hidden ssid, locked to mac addresses, WPA2 autheticated + AES encryption





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  Reply # 64527 21-Mar-2007 12:39
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Wow, there is some real paranoia here.

I don't use either a software firewall or anti-virus, never had a problem.

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  Reply # 64531 21-Mar-2007 13:18
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lokinz

Paranonia not really - when one thinks about it is all about risk assessment, an unprotected PC is just one of hundreds of millions but then again the PCs that become assimilated into bot armies are usually unprotected ones and unprotected PCs are found

you probably wouldn't even know if your PC has been compromised





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  Reply # 64535 21-Mar-2007 13:53
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Interesting theory you have there, my security measure is avoid Windows at all costs.

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  Reply # 64540 21-Mar-2007 14:55
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well it stands to reason that by not using windows or outlook would significantly reduce threat exposure, that said an open port is an open port

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  Reply # 64550 21-Mar-2007 17:43
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Every machine I have used that has become compromised has being quite apparent. Dos boxes popping up with tftp commands in them and similar things happening unprovoked etc.






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  Reply # 65081 26-Mar-2007 20:20
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The modems "power switch" on the top is not actually a power switch. It is a stand-by button.
It cuts the connection from the COAX network to your NIC (but the modem stays aquired to the network). It doesn't turn power of in any manner.
However "turning itself on" is caused by a drop in signal, when this occurs the modem comes back to "online" mode to reaquire a signal again.
However they don't shut down to standby mode again once the network has been reaquired.

Powering off the modem will save you a miniscule amount of power at 9v @ 0.15mA

I'd agree that you need to get a decent anti-virus scanner/firewall protection to keep yourself safe.



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  Reply # 65107 27-Mar-2007 08:14
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Ta, thats the answer I was after.
As I said, it was not the power usage I was concerned about.
It is just me been cautious to minimise my risk of virus attack because even with antivirus software installed, why incur this risk of been connected when you are not using the net.

Cheers  

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  Reply # 65247 28-Mar-2007 07:07
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xlinknz: well it stands to reason that by not using windows or outlook would significantly reduce threat exposure, that said an open port is an open port


As far as that goes, I think if the scanner at grc.com thinks all your ports are stealthed, you shouldn't have too much issue. Even with the OS X firewall turned off, it's not finding anything. Just make sure your router is configured properly. Failing that, ZoneAlarm will work fairly well as a software firewall, even if it is a bit bloated.

If people are paranoid to the point where they're turning the modem off in case someone singles them out for attack, then you might want to start investing in a good router that will filter DOS attacks and SYN floods etc. 

People can't just remotely install apps onto your PC without you having to have done _something_ to enable them to do so such as opening an attachment, or visiting a malicious website. If there's no back-orifice or other hidden TSR/Trojan installed for them to access things with, you shouldn't have an issue.  They certainly can't just scan for your IP, hack into an open port and install a program unless you've really got things wide open with unpassworded shares or telnet server. 

Keep AVG running & updated, do your daily windows security updates, get a router with its own firewall (should be nigh impossible to find one without one), tell the router to block external ping requests and you should be fine. If they can't find you, they (almost) can't hack you.


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