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Why Google with F-Secure Search?

Champion

Why Google with F-Secure Search?

F-Secure's latest version of AV includes a safe search.  This is good and returns us back a year or more when we had this.

 

But I do not believe the NSA is the only devil on the Internet.  Google, Yahoo, Bing, Facebook, and other vendors hoover up our personal data like NSA-wannabes.  Why not use Duckduckgo or Ixquick, search companies which are not on a Blues Brothers mission from God to use our personal data for corporate profit? 

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Advocate

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

I see your point and the answer is Never !! Another good thing to read: Policeware (good or bad?)

 

As mentioned before, use a proxy to stay anonymous. Example for F-Secure Search: http://3.hidemyass.com/ip-8/encoded/czovL3NlYXJjaC5mLXNlY3VyZS5jb20v

 

Spying however is not the same as tracking, so Freedome will be a great complement. As mentioned in this KB article "PC and Mac versions will be released in 2014".

That's all I know but perhaps someone from F-Secure can give us more info? @Chrissy ?

25 REPLIES 25
Advocate

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

I believe the reason is rather simple: Google is probably the best and most accurate search engine.

 

"Wondering what makes F-Secure Search so good? First of all, the web-link ratings are powered by F-Secure’s own best-in-class reputation engine. If you have ever tried F-Secure’s Browsing Protection you will be familiar with how this works. We F-Secure fellows are extremely proud of the hard work and effort that we have put into making our Labs engines as amazing as it is today.

 

On top of that, to develop this product we partnered with one of the industry’s best and most popular search giants – Google. I’m sure we don’t need to explain how accurate Google’s search results are or how popular Google has become until people use the word ‘Google’ as an verb in their daily conversations."

 

From http://safeandsavvy.f-secure.com/2013/11/11/introducing-safe-search/

 

A personal note:

I've tried replacing Google with other search engines but the truth is I tend to go back to Google for the simple reason that it gives me better search results.

An advice: First search with other engines. If unhappy with the results, then try Google. Or simply search through an anonymous Web Proxy.

PS. Watch out for computer versions of Freedome that'll be released in 2014. "Vanish from trackers. And set your location to be anywhere in the world"

Champion

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

NikK wrote "I believe the reason is rather simple: Google is probably the best and most accurate search engine."

So when is F-Secure going to announce its partnership with the NSA?  Maybe the partnership will be described as Data Fellows.  After all, the NSA has the most comprehensive data.

 

I guess I disagree with the opinion of Mikko, Bruce Schneier, and others that data collection is unacceptable when performed by governments, but acceptable when performed by corporations.  I think both are unacceptable.

 

Thanks for the tip regarding Freedome, but it appears to be app-only, i.e. only for smart phones, tablets, and Windows 8.  I mainly use desktops and laptops running 7 or Linux.

 

P.S. For those who thought that the above was a little too serious, know that Data Fellows was the first name of F-Secure.

Advocate

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

I see your point and the answer is Never !! Another good thing to read: Policeware (good or bad?)

 

As mentioned before, use a proxy to stay anonymous. Example for F-Secure Search: http://3.hidemyass.com/ip-8/encoded/czovL3NlYXJjaC5mLXNlY3VyZS5jb20v

 

Spying however is not the same as tracking, so Freedome will be a great complement. As mentioned in this KB article "PC and Mac versions will be released in 2014".

That's all I know but perhaps someone from F-Secure can give us more info? @Chrissy ?

F-Secure

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

Regarding Freedome, I'll have to check with you about the PC/Mac versions, as it seems that rolling out the mobile versions is the current priority.  But I'm anxious to get that eventual PC verison myself Smiley Wink

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Champion

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

NikK wrote "I see your point and the answer is Never !! Another good thing to read: Policeware (good or bad?)"

F-Secure's policy on refusing to kow-tow to government or mafia organizations is a prime reason why I use its AV (the other is its superb protection as measured by AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives), though I am more concerned about Russian cyber-criminals.  And, of course, allowing a back-door for governments might allow cyber-criminals to enter via the same door.

NikK wrote "Spying however is not the same as tracking"

Google has become a quasi-monopoly.  I think many Google employees and users still believe in its fairy tale of "Don't be evil" as if slogans actually meant something.  Glass (and other cyborg wear) will be incorporated into Google's other data tracking actions.  Yes, Google will back into it, as compared to the NSA's assertive walk forward, but the results will be the same.

Did you hear that Google CEO Eric Schmidt visited North Korea in January 2013?  He was not on any diplomatic mission.  The only plausible explanation is that he wants North Korea to allow a Google Maps Car to travel North Korean roads.  Google would make a killing (via Google ads) on users wanting to vicariously visit North Korea.  Given how North Korea imprisons, tortures, and executes its people, that makes Schmidt a Quisling or Kuusinen.

The Guardian article, "Eric Schmidt in North Korea: Google chairman's step into the unknown," reported on Schmidt's excellent adventure in North Korea.

I apologize to the moderator for my political rant.

F-Secure Employee

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

We are planning to release the desktop version of Freedome in few months. We keep you posted when a beta version is available for testing.

Advocate

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

Thanks Paivi for that information, looking forward to it!

 

@baroque-quest 

BTW, besides NoScript(which I remember you use) there's also Ghostery which is more focused on tracking. If you set the options to block all tracker categories it'll for example make the NoScript option "Temporarily allow all on this page" safer to use regarding tracking. Here's an example where I've temporarily allowed all scripts with NoScript, but Ghostery still blocks the one from Google. As you can see at the bottom of the screenshot I've verified it with Developer Tools - Network(F12), selecting "JS"(JavaScript). The Google script is not in the list. Only if I allow it in Ghostery too does it show up there. I really like that!

Ghostery.png

 

Internet Explorer 9 and later has a similar built-in function called Tracking Protection. What I think most people don't know is that you don't need to use a Tracking Protection List to benefit from its features. You just enable the pre-defined "Your Personalized List" and set it to automatically block. When something is blocked you'll see a blue icon to the right in the address bar. Click on it and you have the option to unblock the blocked content for that specific site. It basically works the same way as Active-X Filtering does.

Champion

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

NikK wrote "besides NoScript(which I remember you use)"

 

Yes, I do, along with Duckduckgo.  I also did not install Flash on Firefox (I have that on IE for watching video).  I use Firefox for relatively safe surfing.  I also installed EMET 4.1.  Darn the torpedoes, uh, malware; full speed ahead!

 

Thanks for the references to Ghostery and Tracking Protection.  The graphical example you gave for Ghostery was most enlightening.  Time to play with it!

 

P.S. F-Secure's website blocks the word composed of 'd' and 'a' and 'm' and 'n'?

Advocate

Re: Why Google with F-Secure Search?

EMET is a great protection! If you haven't seen this I suggest you take a look: Security products that complement F-Secure AV/IS 

 

I never install add-ons in IE but I decided to try Ghostery. Guess what, F-Secure blocked the download. I see the Online Safety statistics increase the count for "Potentially harmful web sites blocked" for every download attempt. Since I can't download the file I scanned the download URL on VirusTotal  The reason according to herdprotect is that it "has been known to bundle potentially unwanted software". A typical thing that I assume Malwarbytes Anti-Malware would've picked up if F-Secure hadn't. (I have both on real-time protection)

NOTE that this is only for IE and NOT for the Firefox add-on. The Firefox version is clean on VirusTotal so no worries!

 

A Ghostery advice: don't check "Enable GhostRank" as it collects data. It claims to collect only anonymous data, but I prefer not collecting anything.

 

Regarding Plugins in Firefox one safer option is to set them to "Ask to activate". IE has the similar Active-X Filtering.

 

Regarding IE and Tracking Protection I forgot to mention that you should set the Number of websites to 3 which is the minimum. It's represented by the "Used By" column in the list. I think it's buggy so you have to click the Refresh button to get an updated list. It's good but not as good as Ghostery IMO.

 

IE the safest browser? 

Probably unlike many others I prefer IE as my "safest" browser. IE has a lot of security settings, probably too many to change individually. But it's when you set Security Level for the Internet Zone to High they really come in to play, along with Blocking all cookies for the Internet Zone.

Then you add sites or domains as "Trusted Sites" and set these to Security Level Medium or Medium-High. The only problem is that some sites also have scripts from different domains, so you need some skills to set it up properly. For example: for this community it isn't enough to allow *.f-secure.com you also need to allow fsecured.i.lithium.com because this site is based on the Lithium platform. Developer Tools(F12) is a great help for this, but certain sites as Facebook is perhaps to complex for this approach.

If a site doesn't work due to the High security setting and I don't want to add it as a Trusted Site, I run it with default security settings in Sandboxie.

 

In fact, when a zero-day vulnerability is detected Microsofts recommendations usually is to install EMET and switch the Security Level to High. So why not always use that Smiley Wink