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Posted Mar 1, 2005
Authored by astalavista

Issue 3 Astalavista Security Newsletter

SHA-256 | e646d451cfb1e653e4174de5a96977b584656490f329d4382924d45586b829e6


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|- Astalavista Group Security Newsletter -|
|- Special Christmas Edition -|
|- Issue 3 25 December 2003 -|
|- http://www.astalavista.com/ -|
|- security@astalavista.net -|

- Table of contents -

[01] It's Christmas time at Astalavista
[02] Special Christmas Promotions
- Astalavista's SecurityToolbox DVD
[03] Astalavista's Promotion Programme
- Information Security Knowledge at its best
[04] Webmasters Affiliation
[05] Contribute to Astalavista
[06] Special Christmas Promotions
- Astalavista.net Advanced Security Member Portal
[07] Interview with Kevin Townsend, Founder and Editor of ITSecurity.com
[08] Final Words

01. It's Christmas time at Astalavista

Dear Subscriber,

Another tough year for the Information Security industry is about to pass, did anything change, what did we learn?
That patching your system as soon as possible, and using the latest version of your software could have prevented another
major Internet security disaster? That worms' creation and distribution is emerging? That companies started to offer $ in order
to get computer criminals caught, "security as usual" we might say.Astalavista's aim is, as always, to educate the average
Internet surfer on how to protect his/her personal Information while still using the Internet, and to provide the real
Security experts with an extremely comprehensive Security resource, we're devoted to increase the Security awareness level
of the general visitor, and we've been again doing so during the year.Hundreds of Security related files and papers were
downloaded, millions of visitors and people eager to know about their Security, we call it Information dissemination!

Issue 1 and Issue 2 of Astalavista's Security Newsletter can be located here:


Thanks for staying with us, we wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, folks!
And don't forget to physically disconnect your ADSL modem when you're not using it :)

Editor - Dancho Danchev

Proofreader - Yordanka Ilieva

02. Special Christmas Promotions

We care about our visitors, subscribers and friends, that's why Astalavista decided to start a special programme to reward
all of you with special promotions, discounts and exclusive access to the new services Astalavista keep developing.

- Astalavista's Security ToolBox DVD - Christmas Promotion ----> 40% Discount <----

Astalavista's Security Toolbox DVD is considered to be the largest and most comprehensive Information Security archive.
As always, we are committed to provide you with a resource for all of your security and hacking interests,
in an interactive way! The Information found on the Security Toolbox DVD
has been carefully selected, so that you will only browse through quality information and tools.
No matter whether you are a computer enthusiast, a computer geek, a newbie looking for information on "how to hack",
or an ITSecurity professional looking for quality and up to date information for offline use or just for
convenience, we are sure that you will be satisfied, even delighted by the DVD!

Main benefits:

- 40% of the real price($49.90) so you get the Astalavista's Security Toolbox DVD for $29.90 (+Packing and Shipping)
- Extremely comprehensive -
- Very well sorted archive with detailed descriptions -
- Large archive of Ebooks never released before -
- Improved performance of the Security Toolbox, information has never been that easier to find -
- People connecting from countries with slow connections can benefit and get all the Security information at their hands -
- You will automatically become part of the new Astalavista's Promotion Service, meaning that you will receive information about promotions and special services, which is not going to be released to the public.

--> Thousands of Security Related Web Sites <--
--> Hundreds of Security Related tools and programs <--
--> Countless Security white papers and publications <--
--> Only ONE DVD <--
--> Astalavista's Security ToolBox DVD <--

More info can be found here:


03. Astalavista's Promotion Programme

- Information Security Knowledge at its best -

Astalavista Security Group is more than ever devoted to increase the satisfaction of its visitors and customers, that's why
from year 2004, Astalavista starts its Promotion Programme.It is intended to increase the satisfaction of our visitors,
customers by constant promotions and exclusive access to new Astalavista's services, to constantly renovate the whole
portal and increase the number of the services provided for free.We want to hear from you, we want to know your
expectations, your comments and recommendations, your flames, anything that comes to your mind about Astalavista.com,
direct it to security@astalavista.net and be sure that we will read and take your concerns/ideas very seriously.
All of our visitors, customers and contributors will benefit from this new programme, you will soon be provided with more
information on its progress.

04. Webmasters' Affiliation

Are you looking for external financial sources? Look no further, join our
Affiliate program and earn money for reselling Astalavista.net's memberships.

How does it work?

All you need to have is a web site where you'll be able to link Astalavista
using our special Affiliate program's link, which keeps track on every account
registered through your site.Thousands of users are already reselling membership
and getting an extra cash just because of the web site they own.Some are even
trying to convince their users of the Astalavista.net's benefits but it's all
up to you.

- It's free to join
- You only need to make 50$ to get paid
- Payouts sent by PayPal or banktransfers
- Effective high-quality banners available
- Resell memberships to one of the best Security Portals on the web

For registration or additional information visit the following URL:


05. Contribute to Astalavista

Astalavista needs YOU! We are looking for authors that would be interested in writing security related
articles for our newsletter, for people's ideas that we will turn into reality with their help and for anyone who
thinks he/she could contribute to Astalavista in any way.Below we have summarized various issues that might
concern you.

- Write for Astalavista -

What topics can I write about?

You are encouraged to write on anything related to Security:

General Security
Security Basics
Windows Security
Linux Security
IDS (Intrusion Detection Systems)
Malicious Code
Enterprise Security
Penetration Testing
Wireless Security
Secure programming

What do I get?

Astalavista.com gets more than 200 000 unique visits every day, our Newsletter has more than 22,000 subscribers, so you
can imagine what the exposure of your article and you will be, it would be impressive!We will make your work and you popular
among the community!

What are your rules?

Your article has to be UNIQUE and written especially for Astalavista, we are not interested in republishing articles that
have already been distributed somewhere else.

Where and how should I send my article?

Direct your articles to dancho@astalavista.net and include a link to your article; once we take a look at it and decide
whether is it qualified enough to be published, we will contact you within several days, please be patient.

Thanks a lot all of you, our future contributors!

06. Special Christmas Promotions

- Advanced Security Member Portal - Astalavista.net

--> Christmas Promotion <--

- 20$ off the real price($99) so you get a LIFETIME Membership for $79

Astalavista.net is a world-known and highly respected Security Portal offering
an enormous database of very well sorted and categorized Information Security
resources, files, tools, white papers, e-books and many more.At your disposal
there are also thousands of working proxies, wargames servers, where all the members
try their skills and most importantly - the daily updates of the portal.

- Over 3.5 GByte of Security Related data, daily updates and always working
- Access to thousands of anonymous proxies from all over the world, daily updates
- Security Forums Community where thousands of individuals are ready to share
their knowledge and answer your questions; replies are always received no matter
of the question asked.
- Several WarGames servers waiting to be hacked, information between those
interested in this activity is shared through the forums or via personal
messages, a growing archive of white papers containing info on previous
hacks of these servers is available as well.

The Advanced Security Member Portal

07. Meet the Security Scene

In this section you are going to meet famous people, security experts and
all the folks who in some way contribute to the growth of the community.
We hope that you will enjoy these interviews and that you will learn a lot of
interesting information through this section.In the Christmas issue we have interviewed
Kevin Townsend, the founder of ITSecurity.com - a well known Information Security Portal,
providing its visitors with a unique content for all of their security interests and needs.

Interview with Kevin Townsend, Founder and Editor of ITSecurity.com

Originally taken for HiComm Magazine ( http://www.hicomm.bg/ )

Astalavista: How did you get interested in the Information Security field?

Kevin: More by accident than design. I had been a freelance IT journalist for many years -
then we had a child that couldn't sleep. We went through many, many months of
averaging just a couple of hours sleep each night - it played havoc with my freelancing;
couldn't concentrate, couldn't write, couldn't meet deadlines... In the end I
gave up and got a proper job. It was actually the first thing that came along,
and was marketing manager with a software company that just happened to develop
security software. But from then on I was hooked. Infosec is one of the most fascinating
areas there is: good versus bad, light versus dark - the perpetual battlefield
at an intellectual level without any blood.

Astalavista: Share your viewpoint on the constantly increasing malware problem
issue, are we going to see another ILOVEYOU disaster in the near future?

Kevin: I'm sure there will be more malware all the time - and sooner or later, one of them will be dramatic
and disastrous. My biggest fear for the Internet, however, is government intervention. Governments need control,
and they fear lack of control. The weaker they are, the more they need to control - and the world has some
mighty weak people in high office ATM. The Internet is a threat to their control. They need to control the
Internet in order to control people. Consider this: we call a category of malware 'viruses'.
We do so because they behave like biological viruses. If we continue that analogy, then the 'system'
they attack (the Internet) equates to the human body.

Now, if a virus attacks a human, we react in several different ways. The 'traditional' method
(it isn't traditional at all; it's very recent) is to attack the virus with
ever-stronger antibiotics, or even the surgeon's knife. But more and more of us are coming to the
conclusion that this sort of 'quick fix' is no fix at all - all it does is
weaken the immune system and encourage the virus to grow into ever stronger variants.
The real solution is to strengthen the immune system so that the viruses are
tackled and destroyed without causing any damage.

This analogy should be passed back to computer viruses. If governments over-react with increasing penalties
and draconian actions (the surgeon's knife), we will
weaken the Internet until it is just a pale shadow of the vibrant organism it should be - and
we still won't ever get rid of the viruses. The real solution is to strengthen the Internet, not to emasculate it.

Astalavista: As far as ITSecurity is concerned, what are the major
threats companies and home users face on a daily basis and how can they be prevented?

Kevin: Well, by now you won't be surprised to know that I consider over-regulation to be the major
threat for both business and home users. We are all rapidly
transferring our personas to the cyber world, whether that is our business persona or individual persona.
Once that is complete, whoever controls the cyber world
will control all of us. Smart card ID cards will be able to track everything that
everybody does - in fact; we won't be able to do anything without the cards. And if a
domain name is withdrawn, individuals or entire companies will effectively disappear overnight.
This is a far greater threat than another Lovebug.

Astalavista: In today's world of terror, how real do you think the danger of
Cyberterrorism is, like stock exchanges going down, corporate networks completely devastated by terrorist groups?

Kevin: I think that the danger exists, but is over-hyped. Attack analyses show that a large percentage of
attacks against western (that is, American) utilities and banks come
from a very small number of countries well known to be largely anti-American.
I cannot believe that this is all done without their government knowledge - so the
danger is very real. But just as there are some very clever people attacking systems,
so there are some very, very clever people defending them.

Astalavista: What's your personal opinion on the US government's effort to monitor
its citizens' Internet activities, in order to protect them from potential terrorist attacks?

Kevin: It isn't, of course, just the US Government. I actually believe that the UK is already further down
the line on this. Governments need to strike a balance between
defending their people and enslaving their people. A recent poll of American CSOs by CSO magazine shows
that 31% of US business leaders believe that the USA is on the way to becoming a police state.
I think that most governments have failed to find the right balance - and I think the UK government has already put
everything in place for a police state in the UK. I forget the precise words, but the comment
that 'those who would give up freedom for security actually deserve
neither' is so very true.

08. Final words

We hope that you enjoyed all of these promotions, we're always devoted to provide you with an interactive way of
learning and working with Security information. Astalavista is improving, our staff is increasing, so do the services
provided by Astalavista.We would like to thank you for staying with us, and for the enormous interest you have shown in
the Newsletter and our portal.Enjoy your holidays and take care of yourself :) Astalavista will always evolve!

Editor - Dancho Danchev

Proofreader - Yordanka Ilieva
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