Question What was your dumbest security mistake?

RoboMan

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Let's look back... we're all human (well, not me, I'm a robot) and we make mistakes. Sometimes we ruin things we shouldn't have ruined, and sometimes our mistakes can be... easy to avoid.

What's your anecdote of some IT or security mistake you could have avoided? Like a malware you catched, a phishing you clicked in.

For example, in 2019, I was trying to bypass BitDefender with a simple ransomware script I was writing and thought it would never work, but after a couple of tries... It worked!

Sadly, as I was just messing around thinking it'd never work, I was testing it on my host machine, and I hadn't coded a decryptor. So, RIP my files.

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What's your story?
 

n8chavez

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Feb 26, 2021
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In my ignorance that was my youth, I used to use Norton products. What a dumbass I was back then! Then I learned that a company that is the most well known shifts all their money to marketing and away from software development. After that I discovered NOD32 1.x and Dr. Web 2.x and have never again relied on a well known company for security.
 

JasonUK

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Apr 14, 2020
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In my ignorance that was my youth, I used to use Norton products.
Ditto... although now that Avast is owned by Norton I seem to be repeating my error :( Fortunately after first infection I switched to Avira (& others) and haven't been hit by viruses, since... or at least none that I'm aware of. My daughters' laptops which were mainly used for games & messenger/forums back then slowly ground to a halt under the weight of malware which got past Norton 360 so a clean install, new AV & passwords were necessary. With kids you have to assume they'll click 'okay' to everything so set AV to strictest level possible and if it's important they can ask for help if they're blocked.
 

blackice

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I sleepily clicked a phishing email and logged into Apple when my son was first born and I was at the height of sleep deprivation.

Thankfully I realized what had happened about thirty seconds later when I woke up a bit and changed the password and logged out all devices.
 

Shadowra

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I had downloaded a keygen in 2008 on a dubious site which destroyed the files of Windows XP :D
The antivirus at the time (McAfee) had not seen anything....

And in 2011 when I wanted to test a file with Microsoft Security Essentials.... I got the Rogue FakeAV MS Security... I had to pass Eset and Malwarebytes to remove it.....
And to think that the av I had before MSE (Coranti 2011) detected it...
 

plat

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Opening Internet Explorer before I had installed all 180 Windows updates (after I re-installed Windows 8.1).

Oh wait, that wasn't me. Who was that nincompoop?! Folks, I swear I did not do that. Honest. 🤥
 

show-Zi

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The first Windows was xp. I heard from a friend that 'comodo's fw is the strongest', so I installed it without hesitation from the cd in the magazine's appendix.
.....At that time, my environment wasn't connected to the network yet.:censored::coffee::ROFLMAO:
 

Chuck57

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Way back when, probably around 2000, I installed Tiny Personal Firewall. Not the Tiny of today, but another, earlier Tiny that ran on Win 98 up to I think Windows 2000. Well, the version I had was Tiny v2. In the early 2000s, they came out with Tiny Personal 4, which had all kinds of boxes to check for configuration. I figured, knowing about as much about firewalls as I do today, the more boxes checked, the more secure my computer would be.

It worked. When I finished checking a large number of the little boxes, I had to reboot. Well, I rebooted and couldn't get into my computer. That told me Tiny worked. My computer was safe, even from me. I ended up having to grab my stack of 3 1/2 inch floppies and reinstall Win 98. I did not reinstall Tiny Personal Firewall, settling instead on the free version of Sygate firewall, which I ran until Comodo came on the scene.
 

shukla44

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Back when i was in high school, midterm results came out online & i didn't know how to access them. Giving my friend the laptop to view the results was my dumbest mistake. I don't know (don't remember) what the heck he did but my laptop became unusable. I had to go to a technician to fix it. He formatted it.
And FYI i was using Quick Heal antivirus which came with the laptop.
 

brambedkar59

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This was back when I was totally new to computer (more than ~13-14 years), my big bro used to move files to/from USB onto PC. Let's just say our PC was choke full of worms/virus. We had "VirusBuster" installed but never updated it cause no internet connection plus didn't knew that we had to update it.
I didn't know what a installer was back then. So before installing windows again we copied shortcut files on Desktop & sent them to burn to CD thinking I was backing up the programs.
 

Antimalware18

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My brothers FB account was hacked a week ago, I had a link sent to me by the hacker the title was "look who died!" and i wasnt paying the best attention (usually i dont click on any links through messenger unless I can verify the person who sent them, or the link) but I clicked on it anyways, it loaded up into edge but was blocked by Malwarebyte's browser guard due to "trojan"

I then proceeded to taunt the hacker to keep him busy and helped my brother get his account back, all's been well for him since then.

it was a near miss, but I don't think it would have led to anything even without Malwarebytes, if it had downloaded a file i wouldn't have opened it without uploading it to VT first to make sure it was clean also my resident AV would have most likely caught it.

I uploaded a picture of the original taunt, which the hacker did respond to :ROFLMAO:
taunt 2 fixed.jpg
 
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Snue23

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Jan 12, 2022
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I accidently clicked on malware that I collected for testing(hobby testing ) , It was a ransomeware .

In that pc I only saved malware samples that I collected in few days , rip to those samples , I had collect those again . Ohh ! What the pain .
 

roger_m

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I once opened a worm that I knew was malicious, but was expecting the antivirus I was using a trial version of to stop it from running. But it didn't, as maybe it didn't block scripts, even though the antivirus did have signatures for it. As a result a lot of files such as pictures were overwritten and in those days I didn't have backups. Of course now days I backup my files and never knowingly launch malware, other than on systems I use for testing.

I think it may have been the ILOVEYOU worm.
 

RoboMan

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For some reason a time I though more av= more safety. So I ended installing 3 av and crroupted my pc.
I know the feeling. I did this a couple of times when I was a kid really. First three times were out of ignorance. The fourth, I had learned not to stack antiviruses, but this time I was trying to change from Avast to ESET, and I figured that in order to "not be unprotected for a single minute", I'd first install ESET, and only then uninstall Avast. Sadly, ESET's installation never finished, at the middle of it, my PC died and had to take it to the technician since it wouldn't boot again.
 
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