For many months now I’ve been looking for some good value tracking software to install on my netbook and (potentially) my portable devices. As much as I hope my netbook never gets stolen – you can never be sure what might happen and it’s better to be prepared.
It was only today that I’ve finally found the answer. It’s called Prey. It’s an open-source piece of kit that runs on Windows, Mac and Linux.
Once you’ve downloaded and installed it, that’s the last you’ll see of it. Make sure when you install it to select the option not to install start menu shorcuts as it will make the software harder to find by an thief.
From here onwards, all of your settings for the program will be managed online. Log onto your account at the program’s website, and you’ll be presented with a handful of useful properties.
For example, you can get the program to take logs of any wi-fi networks it’s connected to, together with pictures from any connected webcam and screenshots of your display. These are then summarised in reports that are emailed direct to your inbox for your viewing pleasure. Believe me – you’ll be astonished at what it’ll pick up.
I happen to think this is an essential for anybody with a laptop that they care about – the software is totally FREE and could help you (and the police) in what would otherwise be a relatively hopeless situation. The program won’t hamper your computer’s performance at all (using just 5MB of RAM in Windows) and you’ll forget you’ve even installed it.
Well I have to say that after yesterday’s experience with Windows 7 I am slightly concerned about the security side of the new operating system.
I’m not the only one with concerns for Microsoft’s security. Sophos, a valued security organisation, has criticized Microsoft says Windows 7 is vulnerable to “8 out of 10 viruses” spreading round the world wide web at this time.
My concern isn’t really to do with viruses, but more down to anti-malware in general.
I was quite frankly astounded that a trojan had made it’s way onto my computer just 2 weeks after installing Windows 7. Now I am quite experienced with computers (not to boast about it!!) and I don’t go round downloading malicious software from the internet, so I was quite puzzled when my computer started acting up.
Windows was mysteriously minimizing Windows randomly – typical sort of thing with a trojan. It didn’t take long for me to work out something had infected my computer and Comodo Internet Security wasn’t reporting any type of threat, so I downloaded some other software and eventually dug it out.
After about half an hour of scanning, the threat was fished out of the Windows Registry and I managed to fix the issue rather easily, and the symptoms immediately stopped.
What puzzles me is how easily a trojan managed to make its way into my registry and start messing around with my computer. I thought Windows was supposed to dig out threats before they take control.
Well, whatever. But it is a concerning issue. Microsoft needs to do something about this, and fast – or Windows 7 could quickly end up with a poor reputation. And a poor reputation is the last thing Microsoft want right now – not after the outrage from Windows Vista.