Saturday, 12 July 2008

Windows Patch Zones Out Firewall Users

Earlier this week, Microsoft released patches that prevent some kind of domain-spoofing bug. The patch, however, prevents Internet access on machines running Windows 2000 and XP with a ZoneAlarm firewall. Vista machines are unaffected.

In addition to providing the latest versions of their ZoneAlarm firewall, Check Point (who bought over Zone Labs) has issued a workaround for the problem:

  • Go to the ZoneAlarm Firewall panel.
  • Click the Firewall tab.
  • Move the Internet Zone slider to Medium.

This workaround may reduce the effectiveness of the firewall, but it's better than being locked out of the net entirely. Eventually, affected users will have to install the latest version of ZoneAlarm.

A certain tech-geek subculture is to blame for this. All the talk about creating script-writing kits, bugs and malware for "purposes of education only" is pure bull-crap. If they're smart enough to come up with such tools, they should be smart enough to know what they're unleashing. They do know - they just don't care.

Virus-coding is no longer confined to a shadowy group of elites. Now, anybody - from bullied ten-year-olds to forty-something washouts - who wants to overcompensate for real-life deficiencies are so well-educated, they can create digital equivalent of the bird-flu virus with a few keystrokes and a couple of mouse-clicks.

Just because nobody's getting killed doesn't make these script kiddies and those who enable them less of a terrorist. I think they're even worse.


  1. i responded by deleting zone alarm from my laptop.

  2. Yvonne: That might not be wise. Like our streets the Web is no longer a safe place. But if you keep Windows or whatever updated I suppose it's OK... .


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