Wednesday, June 29, 2011

2-Factor Authentication

The short guide to going online in public really should point out the danger of key loggers and the importance of two- factor authentication. Here are two tips that I suggest if you ever "need" to do sensitive work on a public computer:

1. Setup your email and any other accounts with two-factor authentication whenever it is available. This must be done beforehand. Gmail, PayPal and eBay are three online services that offer two-factor authentication. There are many others.

2. If you can't or don't use two-factor authentication, you must assume that whatever username/password you type on the public computer will be recorded. For this reason, it is critical that you change the password on all of those accounts as soon as you have access to a secure computer. You should also monitor those accounts for suspicious activity and report any violations immediately. - DF

Editor's Note: Simply put, two-factor authentication is an approach to authentication requiring two different confirmations that someone is who they say they are. This lessens the ability of the hacker to get into your account.

Facebook Friend or Foe

"How sad it would be if people took your advice and hid on Facebook. It's a great public place and treated with the same respect you would in any public place it's wonderful. Those sad people who are locked down miss the wonderful world it is. But I guess fear is your business like any insurance sales person (Editor's Note: Not really, you can look me up on Facebook any old time)."

My Twopenn'orth: Wrong analogy. I'd say Facebook is not 'any public place'. It's more like trusting people through a front gate and into the back yard. Usually OK, but some people are not trustworthy, and will use that space for their hidden purposes: a bit of sneaky vandalism, an opportunity to embarrass, bully, or defraud you without witnesses [so they think]. I'm not a fearful person, but I'm older now, and live 'alone'. I've learned to be more cautious, and not to be so quick to trust the friendly smile and plausible talk of those who are looking for situations where they'll find people they deem to be more vulnerable. In truly 'public places' there are plenty of witnesses, and 'the bad folk' cannot so easily hide themselves and their actions.

I don't find your mailings increase my fear level - they simply alert me to possibilities. When I had an email from a friend last year, with a link to something she knew would interest me, I read the email through again, thought about it, and didn't click on the link. Email deleted.

Why? Because you had just highlighted the growing problem of false emails, and the opening greeting was not her usual style. Later I had another email from her, warning me someone had got hold of her address book, and had sent out viral emails to all her friends. Thank you, Larry. - DJ

Monday, June 27, 2011

Repair Outlook data files (.pst and .ost)

If you can't open your Personal Folders file (.pst) or your Offline Folder file (.ost), or you suspect that your .pst or .ost data file is corrupt, you can use the Inbox Repair tool (Scanpst.exe), to diagnose and repair errors in the file.

Quit Microsoft Outlook if it's running.

Double-click Scanpst.exe, located at drive:\Program Files\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\LocaleID folder - where LocaleID is the locale identifier (LCID) for the installation of Microsoft Office. The LCID for English - United States is 1033.

In the Enter the name of the file you want to scan box, enter the name of the .pst or .ost file that you want to check, or click Browse to look for the file.

To specify scan log options, click Options, and then click the option you want.

Click Start.

When the scanning is completed, and if errors were found, you will be prompted to start the repair process.

To change the name or location of the backup file created during the repair process, in theEnter name of backup file box, enter a new name, or click Browse to look for the file.

Click Repair.

Start Outlook using the profile that contains the .pst file that you tried to repair.

On the Go menu, click Folder List.

In the Folder List, you may see a Recovered Personal Folders folder containing default Outlook folders or a Lost and Found folder. The recovered folders are usually empty, because this is a rebuilt .pst file. The Lost and Found folder contains folders and items that the Inbox Repair tool recovered. Items that are missing from the Lost and Found folder cannot be repaired.

If you see a Recovered Personal Folders folder, you can create a new .pst file, and then drag the items in the Lost and Found folder into the new .pst file. When you have finished moving all items, you can remove the Recovered Personal Folders (.pst) file, including the Lost and Found folder, from your profile.


If you are able to open the original .pst file, you may be able to recover additional items from your damaged .pst file. By default, the Inbox Repair tool creates a file called file name .bak, which is a copy of the original .pst file with a different extension. The .bak file is located in the same folder as your original .pst file. You may be able to recover items from the .bak file that the Inbox Repair tool could not recover. Make a copy of the .bak file, giving the file a new name with a .pst extension. Import the "bak.pst" file, and then move any additional recovered items to the new .pst file that you created.
A copy of the log file is written to the same location as the .pst file.