Ask Leo! #415 – Moving a file can leave traces, Microsoft Security Essentials, blaming a contact and more…


The Ask Leo! Newsletter

*** Featured

What are the security ramifications of moving a file to another disk?

I am worried about a potential security loophole when using Truecrypt. Basically, if I move a file into a Truecrypt volume, doesn't the data still exist in unencrypted form in its original location? The analogy I am thinking of here is that deleting a file just deletes the file index, but not the data.

What do I need to do ensure that no unencrypted remnants are left behind when I move a file into a Truecrypt volume?

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You raise a very important point for the security minded among us. Moving a file into a TrueCrypt volume almost certainly leaves behind the very thing you're trying to secure.

In fact, your analogy isn't an analogy at all - it's pretty much exactly how the scenario plays out.

To understand why that is, we need to examine the whole concept of "moving" a file, how it works, and why it works the way it does.

And, of course, give you an extra step to keep your information secure.

Continue reading: What are the security ramifications of moving a file to another disk?
http://ask-leo.com/C6124

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*** Answercast

Answercast #78 - New computers, email attachments, infected friends, annoying surveys, sticking with MSE and more...

Ever wonder what you should do first with a new computer or how to share contacts. Curious how ISPs control bandwidth or if we should worry about MSE ratings? Need a universal printer driver or want to clean up remembered documents in Adobe? All that and more in this Answercast from Ask Leo!

Listen

Continue reading: Answercast #78 - New computers, email attachments, infected friends, annoying surveys, sticking with MSE and more...
http://ask-leo.com/C6125

How do ISPs control my bandwidth?
ISPs control bandwidth with very extensive routers. The equipment owned by the ISP keeps track of exactly what data is being sent to and from your internet connection.
Continue reading: How do ISPs control my bandwidth?
http://ask-leo.com/C6126

Microsoft Security Essentials got a bad rating. Should I switch?
The Microsoft Security Essentials rating recently released was testing the tool in a way that ignored basic security practices. You can draw your own conclusions.
Continue reading: Microsoft Security Essentials got a bad rating. Should I switch?
http://ask-leo.com/C6127

Can I use a Universal Printer Driver to connect to my printers?
Universal printer drivers may or may not work. The best bet is to go to the printer's website and see what drivers they have available.
Continue reading: Can I use a Universal Printer Driver to connect to my printers?
http://ask-leo.com/C6128

Can I determine which of my contacts gave me a virus?
Which contact gave a virus can be hard to guess unless you can follow the clues from the email or instant message that delivered it.
Continue reading: Can I determine which of my contacts gave me a virus?
http://ask-leo.com/C6129

Can I prevent a machine from ever sending mail?
Blocking all email on a machine is going to be tricky. There are some other ways to do online banking securely.
Continue reading: Can I prevent a machine from ever sending mail?
http://ask-leo.com/C6130

Is sending an encrypted attachment a reasonable approach to email security?
Encrypted attachments in email can increase the level of security for sensitive communications, but only if done right.
Continue reading: Is sending an encrypted attachment a reasonable approach to email security?
http://ask-leo.com/C6131

Pages I visit are being obscured by a survey; how do I fix it?
Pages obscured by a survey might be legitimate ads... or it may be a virus. Time for a thorough scan.
Continue reading: Pages I visit are being obscured by a survey; how do I fix it?
http://ask-leo.com/C6132

How do I remove documents listed on the Adobe Reader menus?
Adobe Reader drop-down menus are actually a "recently viewed documents" list. There are a few ways to update the list.
Continue reading: How do I remove documents listed on the Adobe Reader menus?
http://ask-leo.com/C6133

How can I share contacts between two email accounts?
Sharing email contacts is not as easy as you might think. I'll walk through a few ways it might be set up.
Continue reading: How can I share contacts between two email accounts?
http://ask-leo.com/C6134

What should I do first with my new computer?
First steps with a new computer would be to insure it is set up just the way you like and then take recovery images of the new machine.
Continue reading: What should I do first with my new computer?
http://ask-leo.com/C6135

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*** Comments

Why is Outlook so slow to receive email?

Greetings_from_Tokyo writes:

Leo was correct when he stated "I'll give you a warning: compacting can take some time. " I had a pst file which was inflated to 20 GB. I let it compact, resulting in a file of 5.8 GB. This compacting took 25 hours and 40 minutes. The computer did not have to do other tasks during that period and was thus fully devoted to this task.

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How can I send anonymous email?

Kevin writes:

Hi Leo Great article and for once I will say very interesting comments. Alas I am too old to worry about this sort of thing. But my gut feeling is that you are right as usual. Once one leaves a trail it can be backtracked regardless. Nevertheless it is possible that some of the remedies in comments may well be successful on a superficial level.
If I may revert to the Questioner, I would have to ask what would happen if this liaison turned out to be successful. Surely the deception would be found out, unless of course the recipient was a complete moron :-)

My take on the dating scene (which, I'll readily admit, I've not been in for close to 35 years) is that initial anonymity on online dating sites not only makes sense, but should be totally understood as acceptable by all parties concerned. It's general knowledge that you just don't know what you're getting into, and that keeping things at arms length until you're comfortable is a valid and proper way to protect yourself from ... well, from who knows what. Same applies for things like Craigslist ads and other online services that connect two random people.

-Leo

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Is Microsoft Shutting Down Hotmail?

*Auburn writes:

I have a problem with the phrase that indicates Microsoft isn't forcing me to change to outlook. Several times, the familiar Hotmail page has been replaced with the ugly and sterile outlook "improvement" and each time I have had to switch back to the old Hotmail page that I have come to know and love. It's vastly annoying to have to switch back and forth. I still can't get my "contact" list to look like the old Hotmail contact list--it seems to be permanently stuck in sterile outlook mode.

Here is my question: Why doesn't Microsoft offer a choice? Those who wish to go over to the dark side (Outlook) can do so. But give the old "stick-in-the-mud" types like me their Hotmail page which is a nicer, more colorful and comfortable page? I don't use social networks for communication, I use e-mail. Outlook looks cold and sterile to me=UGLY.

I had to use a form of Outlook when I worked in local offices and disliked it then, too.

Totally in agreement with Anon EMOUSE's comment. Typically arrogant behavior from a giant in the industry and shows a primal disregard for the customers it is supposed to be serving.

Hey Microsoft, ever hear the phrase, "If it isn't broken, don't fix it"?

I have kept my Hotmail address but have signed up with mail.com recently, which may have been a mistake, against the day when Hotmail is finally changed beyond all recognition.

"Why doesn't Microsoft offer a choice?" - they do, but only while the new interface is being tested or rolled out. Maintaining two completely different interfaces that you can choose from forever makes Hotmail itself significantly more complex, error-prone and expensive to maintain. For a free service that's just not a long term option.

You may not consider the old Hotmail broken, but Microsoft clearly does. They don't make changes just for fun or to annoy people. They honestly believe that the new look is simpler and easier for people to use and as a result more competitive.

You and I know many, many others may disagree with that assessment, but at least realize that from their perspective they're doing it to make a better service, and integrate that service more cleanly with their other offerings. They are running a business and in this business to remain stagnant while others continue to improve is death, pure and simple.

This is not the first time that Microsoft has radically changed the Hotmail interface, and I don't expect it to be the last. Each time my advice to unhappy users is the same: vote with your feet. There are many, many other free email services out there. I happen to recommend Gmail these days.

-Leo

Is there an age or gender component to being comfortable with technology?

Nancy B writes:

You hit the nail right on the head, Leo! It's not the age or the gender of the person using the technology. It's how their mind works. Some are fascinated by it and some are frightened of it. Many are in between... BTW, I'm a 73 year old female who is self taught on Photoshop and run a small photo editing business to keep myself busy in my retirement. I just loved it when I got my first computer in the late '90's. (I'm self taught on that too.) It made working with my photos so much easier. I always hated working with the chemicals.

*** Leo Recommends

Thunderbird - A Free, Open Source, and Powerful Email Client

Mozilla's Thunderbird is my choice for email. I use it all day every day, and I can heartily recommend it as an often more powerful and capable replacement for mail programs like Outlook Express, Windows Live Mail and many other desktop email applications.

The feature list is long, but I want to call out some of my favorite features and some of the things that personally draw me to Thunderbird and cause me to make it my recommendation for almost anyone using a desktop email program.

Continue reading: Thunderbird - A Free, Open Source, and Powerful Email Client
http://ask-leo.com/C3451

Each week I recommend a specific product or resource that I've found valuable and that I think you may as well. What does my recommendation mean?

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