Computing Tips from the AmCham Webmaster

“Amazing” worm infects 10 million PCs, may infect 300 million The Downadup worm, also called Conficker, had infected an estimated 10 million PCs worldwide by Jan 23, and security experts say they expect to see a dangerous second-stage payload dropped soon. It has the potential to infect about 30% of Windows systems online. How to protect your Windows PC. 27 Jan 2009

Be aware of “phishing” Phishing—the name for fraudulent attempts to obtain credit card numbers, passwords, social security numbers and other sensitive information. Warnings about phishing bear repeating from time to time. 22 Sep 2008.

Business Tips for Late Facebook Arrivals Choose your friends and photos carefully on social-networking sites, but by all means get on Facebook. Here are some basic lessons a late-arriving executive learned. 16 Aug 2008.

Facebook No. 1 Globally with 132 million users The site is the top global social network, nearly 63% of users are outside North America. The site had been translated into 20 languages including French, Spanish, and Mandarin, recently added 69 more. “Now, through translations, we are seeing a lot of growth in international countries,” says Javier Olivan, international manager at Facebook in a recent interview. 16 Aug 2008.

Understanding the web browser threat and the “insecurity iceberg” There have been frequent reports of hundreds of thousands of Web sites succumbing to mass-defacement, which cause once benign sites to turn against their visitors. Even pages owned by institutions like the United Nations (un.org), the UK government (.gov.uk) and many others have succumbed to such attacks. In 2007, Google uncovered more than three million malicious Web addresses (URLs) that initiate “drive-by downloads.” More than 600 million users are at risk because they are not running the latest most secure Web browser version in June 2008. Click the link to learn more. 27 Jul 2008.

Google gives away free Web application security scanner Weak web application security continues to embarrass companies, potentially causing the loss of customer or financial data. A 2006 survey by the Web Application Security Consortium found that 85.57% of 31,373 sites were vulnerable to cross-site scripting attacks, 26.38% were vulnerable to SQL injection and 15.70% had other faults that could lead to data loss. July 13, 2008.

Bill Gates: PC Genius, Internet Fool The Internet, for all its world-flattening glory, is a destroyer of businesses without parallel. How many companies roared along for decades, minting money, only to see the Internet eat their business plans? We live in a media age and the media industry is Exhibit 1 in the murder trial. Newspapers, magazines, music, television, movies—all of the traditional models are dead or dying as bloodied moguls everywhere scramble to survive. But the Net has brutalized old-line business across most industries-retail, tele-com, financial services and the technology industry itself, is, ironically, no exception. 29 Jun 2008.

Senator Obama’s Secret Digital Weapon A small, obscure firm called Blue State Digital, a market research-New Media hybrid has played an instrumental role. Its handiwork and technology can be seen in the more than $ 200 million Obama has raised online, the 2 million phone calls made on the candidate’s behalf, and in barackobama.com’s social network of 850,000 users, who have organized 50,000 campaign events. 24 Jun 2008.

Vietnam’s New Collaboration Portal Goes Live on IBM Cloud The Vietnam Information for Science and Technology Advance Innovation Portal goes live on an IBM cloud computing infrastructure. Further, IBM and Vietnam National University in Ho Chi Minh City today signed a Memorandum Of Understanding about SSME education and IT Service Curriculum (ITSC) for students and information technology (IT) professionals. VNU-HCMC will be the first in the country to adopt such a program jointly created with IBM. 10 May 2008.

Yahoo! Southeast Asia Chief says VN potential “great” Vietnam is Yahoo!’s top priority in Southeast Asia, he said. With 15 million users in Vietnam already, the country’s potential is great. A new product, Blog 360Plus has been developed specifically for Vietnam’s market, while an online video clip, featuring Tam, the heroine of Vietnam’s most popular folk story, Tam Cam (Vietnam version of Cinderella), who searches on Yahoo! for a machine that can help her sort beans, has become wildly popular. 10 May 2008.

Google’s CEO on “Cloud Computing” Google is a cloud computing server, and in fact we are spending billions of dollars, this is public information, to build data centers, which are in one sense a return to the mainframe. In another sense, they’re one large supercomputer. And in another sense, they are the cloud itself. 27 Apr 2008.

From South Asia to iTunes How a husband-and-wife team turned an Indian music podcast series into a business and is making the most out of its Apple storefront on its Web site, where it sells Indian music from Bollywood hits to Bhangra classics, remixed with rap and pop, via iTunes, Apple’s online music store. 06 Apr 2008.

Life on the Edge: Learning from Facebook. The social network provides important lessons for executives—and a key forum for innovation and experimentation. Products are generally not bought or sold on Facebook, but it is becoming an important site for creative talent and businesspeople to achieve visibility and build networks. Executives would do well to understand that social interaction often precedes economic activity. 06 Apr 2008.

Every click you make … . Consider, say, the Boston Celtics Web site. Based on its content, it posts ads for products a Celtics fan might be interested in: Adidas, a Boston hotel and so on. With information about users from deep-packet inspection, however, advertisers might learn that the person looking at the Celtics Web site is also a potential car customer because he recently visited the Ford site and searched in Google for “best minivans.” 03 Apr 2008

Apple iTunes store the No. 1 music retailer in the world. With over 50 million customers, iTunes has sold over four billion songs and features the world’s largest music catalog of over six million songs. Fifty milion = 50,000,000. Four billion = 4.000.000.000. Six million = 6,000,000. 04 Apr 2008.

Apple iTunes now the Number Two music retailer in the U.S.. With over 50 million customers, iTunes has sold over four billion songs. In fact, it sold an incredible 20 million songs on Christmas Day 2007 alone. And with over six million songs from all of the major and thousands of independent labels, it offers the world’s largest music catalog.

How sticky is membership on Facebook? Just try breaking free. Some users have discovered that it is nearly impossible to remove themselves entirely from Facebook, setting off a fresh round of concern over the popular social network’s use of personal data. Only people who contact Facebook’s customer service department are informed that they must painstakingly delete, line by line, all of the profile information, “wall” messages and group memberships they may have created within Facebook. 11 Feb 2008.

Why do some of my google search results say “This site may harm your computer?”. Google says: “This warning message appears with search results we’ve identified as sites that may install malicious software on your computer.” Then there is plenty of information about how to prevent or get rid of “badware” on your computer. 27 Jan 08.

Spreading the love of physics via MIT OpenCourseWare on iTunes. Walter H. G. Lewin, 71, a physics professor, has long had a cult following at MIT. And he has now emerged as an international Internet guru, thanks to the global classroom the institute created to spread knowledge through cyberspace. Professor Lewin’s videotaped physics lectures are free online. 20 Dec 07.

Don’t send holiday greeting e-cards that are over 100kb.. They take too long to download. 20 Dec 07.

YouTube Video: Globalization and the Information Age. When you watch this video, you’ll be amazed at the pace of technological change. Are you keeping up? Click the link to get started. 17 Dec 07.

College lectures online … for free. Can’t afford the time for college? Too old, too young, or too far away? Now you still learn from the world’s most renowned professors. You can listen to hundreds of lectures from 28 colleges and universities, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford and Yale, by downloading select courses without charge at iTunes. Click the link to get started. 01 Dec 07.

Speed up your internet connection. You can test the reliablity and operational status of your desktop computer and network connection in about 20 seconds with the Web100 based Network Diagnostic Tool (NDT). Then, by tuning your computer parameters, you can increase the internet connection speed by two, three, or even four times. Click the link to get started. 24 Nov 07.

My Midlife Facebook Crisis. Facebook, with 50,000,000 regular users by Nov 2007, was originally designed to replicate the printed directory handed out to university freshmen. It really works as a way of staying in touch with people. Facebook also reminds you of friends’ birthdays. 03 Nov 07.

Gray Googlers strike gold. In return for placing its ads on websites and blogs, Google pays Web publishers every time one of its ads are clicked. Those clicks help keep Alonzy and his wife living comfortably and talking about moving to Hawaii. “All I need is a laptop and a high-speed Internet connection, and I can live anywhere.” 25 Oct 07.

Facebook Etiquette. How to deal with unwanted friend requests, the ethics of de-friending, and other social networking etiquette predicaments on Facebook. At around 40 million members, Facebook is now one of the most popular Web communications tools. 27 Sep 07.

“The Nigerian Letter” and “The Spanish Prisoner” – Advance Fee Frauds and Scams. Variations on a 16th Century scam are updated with email in the 21st Century. One common scam is the “advance fee fraud”—an offer from a relative of a “high level political or business leader,” who has “millions of dollars” in hiding, but needs your help to transfer the money. You (the target) are offered a percent of the total. If you respond, you are persuaded to advance relatively small sums of money in the hope of realizing a much larger gain, which never comes. 22 Sep 07

The Future of Work. You have no idea how you’d get any work done on business trips if you didn’t have a laptop. Then there’s the Internet. It’s hard to conceive of getting through the day without Google (GOOG )—or, if you’re under 40, text messaging or even joining Facebook to stay in touch with your extended network of colleagues. In just a decade or less, technology sure has done a number on the way you work, hasn’t it? 02 Sep 07

Website font too small to read? Learn how to make it bigger.. You need to make the type size adjustment in your web browser. As you can see from the screen shots, you can adjust the font size by clicking on View on both Safari and Firefox. Probably you have the same thing on Internet Explorer. 22 Aug 07

Taking your small business online. Discover the many reasons a business develops a Web site and learn to identify the type of site that’s right for your business. Gain knowledge that will enable you to make key decisions for taking your business online and understand the various options available to you. Although there are many components to building your site, you’ll learn that there are numerous avenues you can take—at least one of which will likely accommodate both your budget and your resources. You’ll also ascertain how your Web site can open a whole new world of marketing and business development opportunities. 13 Aug 07

Facebook – the online social network. Facebook is a social utility that connects people with friends and others who work, study and live around them. More then 25 million people use Facebook to keep up with friends, upload an unlimited number of photos, share links and videos, and learn more about the people they meet. Click the link for more information, and visit the networks for Vietnam, HCM City, etc. 27 Jun 07.

LinkedIn: the online business network. Your professional relationships are key to your professional success. LinkedIn is an online network of more than 11 million experienced professionals from around the world as of June 2007, representing 150 industries. When you join, you create a profile that summarizes your professional accomplishments. Your profile helps you find and be found by former colleagues, clients, and partners. 27 Jun 07.

Bom Chicka Wah Wah: marketing via blogs and social networking. We’re now at the busy crossroads where globalization meets Web 2.0. This presents both a challenge to the old ways of doing business and an opportunity to gain tremendous leverage via the right goods and services. To thrive in this era … 23 Jun 07.

My Virtual Life … is big business. At least 10 million people pay US$ 15 and up a month to play these games, and maybe 20 million more log in once in a while. Some players call World of Warcraft “the new golf,” as young colleagues and business partners gather online to slay orcs instead of gathering on the green to hack away at little white balls. Says eBay Inc. founder and Chairman: “This generation that grew up on video games is blurring the lines between games and real life.” Can you do this from Vietnam? 07 Apr 07

Helvetica celebrates 50th anniversary. Helvetica is one of those typefaces that everybody knows, everybody sees, but they don’t really see it at the same time because it’s so good at its job. It communicates efficiently and quickly without imposing itself, And what about Arial? It is now everywhere, a side effect of Windows’ success, born out of the desire to avoid paying license fees to the owners of Helvitica.

Surge protectors for your computers and other electronic devices. The same electric lines that power a home’s creature comforts can also deliver destructive surges, spikes and lightning strikes, as well as “sags” and “brownouts” to unprotected electronics. But there are ways to protect against that risk. Here are some of the basics: 01 Apr 2007.

Biggest data theft ever disclosed in the USA. At least 45.7 million credit and debit card numbers from customers were stolen over a period of several years, and used ot make purchases in Hong Kong and Sweden, as well as to purchase US$ 8 million in gift cads and electronic goods. 01 Apr 2007

More on How to Avoid Identity Theft. Don’t let your computer be hijacked. Check your credit. Don’t take the bait in “phishing” emails. More information about how you can avoid identity theft. 22 Jan 2007

81% of VN firms use broadband, 17.5% of Vietnamese use internet, Top 100 Sites. Internet use is growing rapidly in Vietnam, Learn more about this trend. 08 Jan 2007.

Avoid Identity Theft. Nine million Americans each year are victims of identity theft. How you can avoid being one of them. 12 Dec 2006

Why am I getting so much #%! spam ?! What the … is going on?!?! Today, SPAM accounts for 9 out ot 10 emails. “As an industry, I think we are losing. The bad guys are simply outrunning most of the anti-spam technology out there today.” 06 Dec 2006

Web Browsers: Firefox 2.0 and Internet Explorer 7. Many prefer Firefox for its speed and simplicity. Others are glad to see an Internet Explorer upgrade after five years. Click the link to read reviews, download both and see which one you prefer. 04 Nov 2006

Beware “spoofing”. Avoid virus attachments on spam emails sent from fake addresses (spoofing). 29 Sep 2006

Top 10 Spam Filters. Anti-spam tools wade through all the emails you receive and sort out the SPAM in a nanosecond before they reach your email inbox. Here are top 10 picks for Windows users, and Mac pics also. 03 Aug 2006

Speakeasy Speed Test Click on the SPEED TEST image to test your internet connection speed. By measuring the download and upload rate you are able to accurately judge your current line throughput or internet connection speed.

Try it now to see how if your internet connection measures up.

Click the logos below to download Firefox, Internet Explorer 7 or 8 (BETA), or Safari for Windows XP, Vista, or Mac.

Firefox 2 Windows Internet Explorer 7

Safari 4 for Windows Mac +PC

Internet Explorer 8