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Re: How insecure are cable connections, versus dialup?

Chip Rose <ncrose@pinn.net> [2002-12-07 15:04:25 -0500]:
> I'm thinking of getting a Cox cable connection/modem, and was
> wondering how hard it is to make the static IP address secure.  I
> don't have a lot of knowledge in this area.  What is needed?  A
> cable modem that I could lease or buy on Ebay, and a network
> interface card, and turn off all unneeded services - how easy would
> it be for someone to hack me, and what all could they generally
> accomplish?  Is getting a cable connection a no-no for someone of my
> limited knowledge level?

You will like the high speed connection.  Don't be scared off.
Everyone will recommend a backup so recover from in the case of
trouble.  A CD writer is convenient and doubles for this.

A high reason crackers want systems on high speed networks is so they
can have a fast network source.  A thousand cable 'bots from all over
the planet all pinging a site can overwhelm it in a distributed denial
of service attack which cannot be blocked since the sources are all
over the place.  And there are other purposes.  Who can understand
the reasoning of the sociopath?  Don't try.  Just block them.

Although the linux kernel iptables firewalls are excellent I still
recommend a separate firewall box between your computer and the Evil
Internet.  That way you can have a lot more freedom over what you do
on your own computer.  You can install software without worrying as
much about how that is going to affect your security.  You are
independent of the OS you are running behind it.  In my opinion the
cable modem should always have had one of these built into it.

A firewall box like a Linksys, D-Link or Netgear or other is just
perfect for SOHO needs.  They run around $80 right now.  Look for a
rebate or sale and save.  No disk drive to crash, no need for backup,
no fan, quiet and can be left on for instant access.  You can add a
second or third computer trivially.  You can run any OS you want
behind the firewall since these are usually configured by a web


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