Internet - Safety and Security

  Housten 17:34 02 Oct 2014

Good Afternoon, Gentlemen,

There was a programme on - BBC2, I think - a few days ago about how our emails are being hacked by government and others. It also said that there are programmes that you can get that will encrypt your emails and other communications so that you will not only be protected from being hacked and you will leave no trace of what you have done or where you have been on the internet.

Now this seems a good idea to me. I talked to the wife and she thought so as well but…….

Are the makers of the programme just trying to wind people up? My wife and I – being pensioners - do not do a lot on the internet. We go to our bank and some online shops and buy things from them and send emails to friends. When we purchase anything we make sure the ‘http’ becomes ‘https’ before proceeding. Boring – yes, but we have so far had no cause for concern.

What I would like to know is this: are these programmes worth considering? I am certain there will be many schools of thought out there but all I want to know is if taking this precaution is going over the top or worthwhile obtaining, bearing in mind what we do the net? Also we use avast, and if it would be a good idea to install such a programme what programmes would you recommend that would work with avast?

  Ian in Northampton 17:57 02 Oct 2014

AFAIK, e.g. Google automatically encrypts emails (gmail/googlemail). Not sure about other providers. As you imply, a site with https encrypts traffic for better security. But: it's hard to know, in general, what to make of this stuff. It's right that programs and articles make people aware of the need to be very, very careful on the web - but in my mind, it often goes too far, makes people utterly paranoid about everything they do - and gives countless opportunities for snake oil salesmen to prosper. Thus far, I'd judge your approach to be spot on and, personally, wouldn't think about doing more than you currently do.

I'm sure others will have different opinions...

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:08 02 Oct 2014

If some "spook" from MI6 wants to be bored out of his/ her mind then they are qute welcome to read my e-mails

  hastelloy 18:15 02 Oct 2014

I agree with Fruit Bat /\0/.

However, anybody who thinks that any government employs anybody who has the time to read every email sent from or to their country surely has to be deluded.

  Housten 15:25 03 Oct 2014

Good Afternoon, Gentlemen,

Thank you all for your advice. I was hoping that what we are doing was adequate and so it seems to be. It is not that I mind spending money but if it is not necessary, why do it?

We will carry on what we are doing. One thing I do know is that avast! seem to update at least once a day so our protection would appear to be ( permanently ) up to date.

many, many thanks for your thoughts and comments.

  wee eddie 19:10 03 Oct 2014

What they do is to automatically search for key words. So:

"I've just been to see this explosive new band. They must be making a bomb."

Would certainly be read

  Ian in Northampton 09:10 04 Oct 2014

wee eddie: you've gone and done it now. GCHQ will be all over this site... :-)

  iscanut 10:49 04 Oct 2014

wee eddie...your days are now numbered having said "BxxB. We will miss you !

  wee eddie 18:42 04 Oct 2014

Don't worry. There was a "D" Notice put on the rest of the post.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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