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ElectroTheDevolian

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About ElectroTheDevolian

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  1. So I noticed through my dashboard that I was in something called Google Groups a year back, and quickly noticed that, while I never agreed to using it, it's on my account regardless. Even worse is that I noticed that I was already in 3 groups that I never asked to be in. Apparently the settings default to letting literally anyone add you to them without your permission (because that logic is pure genius coming from Google's privacy standards). Can't opt out of it either, which is just great. I'm pretty sure that one of the default settings is letting anyone see your email when you're in a group, which is just-- Why? 2 of the groups I could leave, one was in the My Groups section of the site, and the other one was hiding in subscriptions, but the third one seems to be impossible to leave. I double checked everything and scraped through every forum I could to see how I could get rid of this, but to my surprise there's nothing. That or it's extremely hard to find because apparently the use of the site is so ancient and no one except a few things use it anymore. The strangest part is that if I try to see it via the dashboard by clicking the name (which you probably shouldn't do but I did anyway, and then got smart and did it via private window), it throws me into someone's or something's account login screen, usually with with a business end for the email listing. It has to be some sort of bot or botnet doing it. Best I could do is just turn off all the settings that allow anything, and did the same with my work account just in case one day it happens to that. Now here's what doesn't make sense and makes me upset: The fact that I check my dashboard after a few months due to privacy concerns, and guess what I see? Suddenly, I'm magically in 2 more groups! Where did they come from? How did I even get in them? All my settings are turned off to where they're not supposed to do that, how is that possible? And, just like the one I couldn't leave a while back that's been painfully etched on my account like some sort of stain, now there's 3. I don't understand. The one that shows up when I see it in the dashboard, because apparently you can't see all 3 when you expand it, says it's some verification thing. It clearly isn't though due to the "business" email listing. At first I thought maybe it was something to do with my browser, or my phone, but even that doesn't make any sense due to the time it says the most recent which was somehow yesterday, when it was a time I was completely asleep. I don't have Groups or anything installed on my phone either, so I'm at a complete loss of words when it comes to figuring out how these still managed to add me to things. And then there's this new thing called Blogger, which to me just looks like Google Groups 2, and big surprise it said I had one new thing of some sorts for it. Never asked for it, but it's there. It's nothing critical, but I didn't want it either way. Funny part is when I looked at the site for it, it was just like "Hey! Do the thing! This is yours now you joined the site you can't ever opt-out. Have fun with this being stuck there and making things more cluttered." I was screaming internally the whole time I was doing it, because the moment I got to the settings it's almost a solid replica to Groups. Had to turn everything off and private it, same with the work account. Not happy I really hope someone has this same issue and knows a way to fix this because it is driving me mad, because I have no clue how to get rid of these groups and stop them from adding me for good. Is there some way to opt out of both Groups and Blogger, and just to be safe the whole plethora of other weird junk Google has that I never asked to be a part of in the first place? Is there just a reliable and solid way of contacting Google about it in the first place so they'll respond? It drives me mad knowing that I have no control over certain things that I never asked for. If anyone knows any of this and can relate, please tell me how to fix it. It's driving me mad. Maybe double check your dashboards too and see if you've got this thing on there if you've never used it before, same with Blogger. I don't know why Google does this.
  2. I also put this in the wrong topic, sorry about that. Thought this was the help and support topic for Android.
  3. Also: Forgot to mention that there was no call logs or text logs pertaining to the situation, so it doesn't seem like anyone tried to.
  4. I was doing my usual business on my phone when all of a sudden out of nowhere it makes me leave my keyboard. This happens occasionally as it sometimes needs to refresh since it's the google version, so I didn't think much of it. After that though it suddenly cut to a blank, black screen, followed by it playing what seems to be the full default ringtone, then quickly kicking me back to the lock screen. I have no idea what just happened but I'm confused and worried. I did a scan with the scanner, full scan, nothing showed up. Same amount of files as the last from hours ago, and the same amount of apps. Then when I checked recent apps something looks out of place. Google's package installer apparently was used the exact same moment it happened YouTube behind it, and a Wifi manager that's hard set into the phone preinstalled that I can't remove just after it, even though I disabled it as best as possible (I use data because of this. Is it possible that I somehow got something while having YouTube open in the background, as malicious ads are everywhere on the site and app nowadays, or the preinstalled wifi manager software got compromised? Or am I just chasing horses instead of Zebras? Some things to note: - The phone is a tad bit outdated. There hasn't been a software update in over a year for it. Even using the search in settings crashes it at this point. -I always keep my phone's cache cleared, and keep most apps (mainly big ones like games) on an SD card so I have the best performance possible. Bit tedious to keep moving them back when they have an update, though. -This is the first time this has ever happened to me with any phone, so this is a brand new issue.
  5. I managed to fix it. For some reason it bugged when it came to Play Protect. A quick restart of the device, turning Play Protect off, and turning it back on via the security audit fixed the issue. Probably a bug on Google's end. Thanks anyway.
  6. So when I went to go check the Security Audit for Malwarebytes on Android, it said that my Google Play Protect was off. I also decided to check my Security checkup just to be sure, and surprisingly it says Play Protect is off as well. It seems to be on and fully functioning however, so I'm not sure what the deal is. I did recently disable a decent amount of apps, but the issue has never shown up until I uninstalled and reinstalled Malwarebytes due to it bugging out from the newest update. Is Malwarebytes disabling Play Protect, or did the newest Play Store update break Play Protect again? Also, is anyone else having this issue? Apps currently disabled: Chrome Google Drive (Docs, Sheets, Slides included) Google Duo Old Carrier Bloatware Smartphone Bloatware (Smartworld)
  7. Also have to bring this one up again since it's affecting me pretty hard: [K] Sadly it's not a healthy amount of paranoia, as it has been affecting my health in pretty negative ways like restlessness. It does slightly affect my thinking when it comes to safe hex. What I do not know I want to learn, as it will help me calm down. Where should I go to learn about safety, security, and possible malware / virus research? That way, I know what I am doing. @David H. Lipman
  8. A family member in the household is prone to using a tablet for excessive games and apps to play on, and no one seems to know how parental controls work. Basically it's prone to being slow, drains battery excessively fast, and tends to let a lot of permissions through on a personal account (not mine). However, what takes the cake is that the sites being allowed can be straight up ridiculous in names. I've seen some in the logs that are literally just letters. No URL, letters. It looks like someone smashed their hands on a keyboard and pressed enter. Obviously there's no way this is normal. I've used Malwarebytes (Free) for Android and Sophos, but unbelievably only 2 apps showed up. One was a fake app in Malwarebytes (promptly removed), and another was a low-rep app (also promptly removed). What else should I do to clean and possbly disinfect this device?
  9. [A] Some (if not most) Windows apps seem to be hardwired into the system, such as Cortana and the Windows Store. Some used to be possible to disable, but a lot of them force you to have them on, and sometimes even revert settings in new updates (I've caught app recommendations turning back on after an update numerous times). Would it be a good idea to disable them via regedit or CMD?
  10. @David H. Lipman I understand that this may have been too much to put in one topic, and I'll try my best to seperate everything next time. However, I am having a bit of confusion when it comes to following specific answers: [A] When you disable or remove certain Windows apps and services, they tend to come back in the newest update. What's a good way to prevent this from happening? What is safe hex? [G] What is a good email client to use? Also what settings should I be using to prevent security issues? [H] I'm getting mixed messages on this one online. When it comes to ICMP pings, what do I disable to do so? Is it only possible to do on a device, or is there also ways to do it on a router? When blocking ports, should I filter the service for all IPs? Also, what are these ports for, and what are the disadvantages of having them blocked?
  11. If you want, you can delete this post. I can just redo the listing later and post it again.
  12. Well, the listing was supposed to work. Sorry about this. Something obviously bugged.
  13. I couldn't think of any other good way of talking about this without flooding the forum in a bunch of different topics, so I decided the best option was to put this here. Due to how many questions actually turned up in the end, I have decided to organize them so they're easier to answer. Feel free to use said organization. (Ex: A1 or A-1) So obviously I've been on the forums a lot lately, and the reason why is that I've kind of been having an episode when it comes to the security of me and the family. They think I'm crazy for wanting to be so safe, but knowing what's been going on these past few years I don't really want to take any chances. It's been really hard for me to figure out what's safe and what's not when it comes to security and safety. I know there's plenty of sites involving these questions, but most of them tend to trigger Web Protection, stray off topic, or describe them in weird ways that may be unsafe. I'd really like answers to as many of these as possible, as it'll help me calm down more. Though I can understand if answering too many can be excessive. Hopefully all of these are really good questions to be asking, and maybe I ask some that have never really been thought about before. [A] Involving Windows and PCs: Should I be disabling things that I don't need / wish I didn't have that could be invading privacy, such as the Windows Store and Cortana? Should I have a Microsoft Account enabled and synced on Windows? Is it a bad idea to have the sync on when it comes to said account? Besides antivirus, disk cleanup, uninstalling unused software, etc., what's the best way to keep the PC clean and protected? Is it bad to have old data on the PC from things like old games and software? What's the best way to remove it? Which is the safest solution to keeping a computer secure locally: PIN, Password, or Picture Password? When it comes to PCs in general, is it safer to build it or to buy it pre-built to avoid bloatware, built-in adware, etc.? Is Bluetooth safe to use on PC? Using Bluetooth with headphones / headset, is it possible for trojans / spyware to intercept what I'm listening to / who I'm talking to? Involving Mobile Devices: Due to mobile devices being less restrictive when it comes to on-the-go apps, data, etc., what's the best way to keep the device secure from malware, spyware, etc. besides Malwarebytes? I do not feel comfortable with the mobile device's camera. Should I cover it? A device is a few years old it feels like it's slowing down and it's missing things like SMS and calls over a certain time, also certain notifications. Should I be worried that there's a security flaw? What's a good way of cleaning a mobile device that doesn't involve a factory set, as to not lose all the data? A family member has a lot of apps downloaded on their device, and seems to have an excessive amount of tabs open on said device. Though, when I scan it with Malwarebytes (Free) and Sophos, nothing shows up. Is there still a chance that malware and such is heavily embedded into the device? Is there a way to block ads in-app like you can in a browser with something like uBlock? Knowing it being a recent issue, Is there a good way of preventing interceptions with things like SMS and calls? Besides Location (only turn on when I need to), what other settings should I keep off to keep me incognito from other apps and services? Is it better to buy mobile devices from stores or from the official site? I'm hearing notifications go off even though there isn't any when I open the screen. It is a known issue on some devices, however I've never had something like this happen with mine. Am I just going crazy? Either from store providers or mobile companies, how do you fully remove bloatware from your phone? What's the safest solution to keeping a mobile device secure on the lock screen: Knock Code, Pattern, Pin, Password, Fingerprint Scanner, or Picture Password? [C] Involving Consoles, Smart Devices, Cable Boxes, etc.: The Xbox One is a Windows-built console, and the PS4 tends to be very social. Obviously there's a possibility they can get malware and such, but whats a good way to remove said malware if the device is infected? Malwarebytes for Xbox One / PS4 when? Xbox in general is a well known domain when it comes to hacking and hijacking, especially when it comes to Xbox (Microsoft) accounts. What's a good way to keep away from most hacks and hijacks, and what's the best way to keep a Microsoft account secure from hijacks on Xbox? Ads are extremely excessive and invasive when it comes to the Xbox One. Is there any way to block them without doing anything shady? Is Bluetooth safe to use in public areas? Using Bluetooth with headphones / headset, is it possible for malicious passerby's to intercept what I'm listening to / who I'm talking to? Due to recent events, how can you secure Smart TV's, Home Devices (Fire Stick, Chromecast, etc.), Printers, etc. from exploits via ports / connections? Is it better to keep Smart TVs disconnected at all times? What's the safest solution when it comes to using apps and services on other devices: Consoles, Home Devices, or Smart TVs? Is there any way to block the sometimes excessive ads on Smart TVs and Hubs? Some people are prone to leaving these devices on overnight or for extended periods of time, myself included. Is this a bad thing to do security-wise? [D] Involving Accounts and Account Protection: What's the safest solution when it comes to remembering passwords: Writing them down, a password manager, or a password encryption service (Where they make new passwords constantly, and supposedly only you have access)? Certain sites like to opt in to use apps or services without consent and cause security risks, even if they are legitimate. How to I opt out / remove said apps or services? [E] Involving 2FA: What's the safest solution when it comes to an authenticator: Microsoft, Google, or Authy? Although I have an authenticator on, there's still an option for me to use SMS to login. Since SMS can be intercepted, can this be a security issue? Is it safer to have an authenticator on PC or a mobile device? [F] Involving Web Browsing: I want to stay anonymous on the web for the most part. Is there extensions to do so besides uBlock? I wish to avoid accidental typos in the search engine, but it doesn't seem to automatically do it anymore. What should I do to avoid this? Is it possible for a browser stealer to steal cookies and use them for malicious intent (account hijacking, spoofing, etc.)? How do I know which news is legitimate and which ones are exaggerated / hidden ads? [G] Involving Email: Is it safer to use email on a browser or in an app? Is it still possible to get viruses and malware just by opening an email? Can opening emails on a mobile device in-app give me a virus or malware? How do I keep excessive spam from being sent to an email? Is it better to have a clean inbox, or have dated mail in case of certain situations? [H] Involving IP, DNS, Router security and safety, etc.: Although I have all settings on, I only see specifics in the log that may be hiding reasons why things are acting suspicious. What can I do or use to see the full traffic on the router? What is the difference between a Proxy and a VPN? Please be descriptive. Is it a good idea to have a Proxy / VPN on 24/7? Is it a good idea to have a Proxy / VPN on the router? What's the ideal way of keeping out exploits and such as to not have hijacks happen besides updating firmware, disabling UPnP, Remote Access, and updating the password? I am seeing strange sites being allowed to certain devices in the logs that doesn't match up to the usual or secured traffic. Does this mean the router could be infected, or just a specific device(s)? The router may be infected and I wish to factory reset, but the only computer is clear across the house and moving it could risk damage. What do I do? I wish to have an Ethernet connection but I am across the house and I am unable to do any modifications to said house. What is the best option? Is an Ethernet connection always safer than a WiFi connection? Is it possible to have 2 separate connections (Not the same network, SSID, etc.) on 2 different routers and modems on the same line? Is it possible for one router to get infected from another router, even though they're on 2 different modems? Which is safer: Cable internet or Satellite internet? Is it safer to use the ISP provided DNS, or an open DNS? Involving Financial Security and Safety: Is it a bad idea to have sites remember payment information, even if it involves subscriptions? What's the best way to avoid skimmers and possible walk-by's with readers? [J] Involving Data and Backup: What is the best device to use when it comes to external backup of data? Is OneDrive a good idea when it comes to storing personal data such as images and documents? Is there any way to backup data on mobile devices that doesn't involve syncing? Is it a bad idea to have Google backup a mobile device's data, such as settings, sensitive data, etc? Is there a way to encrypt data fully when it comes to backups to where only I can decrypt it? [K] Involving General: Is it bad to be so worried about security all the time, even if I want to keep everyone safe? Is it bad to be so paranoid, even when nothing is wrong security-wise? Is it bad to check things like Security News and such daily if it only fuels my dilemma? Involving the above questions. If so, should I think about taking classes for things like this, that way I feel safer knowing what's wrong and being able to help? It's obvious that the family doesn't seem to care much about safety and security, and may be a reason why I'm asking all these questions in the first place. Should I have a meeting with them to talk about things like this so they fully understand, and so they stop pulling my hair out? [L] Just Some Ideas Y/N: Buildable phones. It'd be way cheaper, and you'd know what you'd have in your phone already. Y/N? Multiple-Factor Authentication (MFA), specifically 3 or more, being more common. That way if they manage to get through one authentication via brute force, they still need to get through more. Not only this, but if an authenticator was first and they manage to brute force it, but they can't get past the second one in a specific amount of time, it'd require them to reenter a new authentication again which they obviously don't have. It could also work great with passkeys and fingerprint scans. Granted, it'd take more time out of your day. Y/N? Automatically changing recovery codes. Some sites automatically disable attempts after a certain amount of tries, but there's still that what-if chance of brute force. Not quite sure how you could send them to the account holder though without potentially being exposed, however... Y/N? 2FA / MFA for payment sources online. Kind of hard to explain, but imagine if every purchase from an unknown IP or location was forced to use a specific authentication before you could purchase something, and not just your average 2FA from the site itself. I feel like it'd help out a lot when it comes to possible leaks and such, as along with this it could notify you when your card or account was used in an unknown location or IP before any damage happens. That way, you can have your card our account info changed or frozen if needed. I was also going to talk about doing this physically, but it seems like banks are slowly starting to roll out the feature on ATMs (finally). Y/N Again, sorry for having so many questions. It's just that I want to be safe and secure in the end.
  14. So recently I got a spam email saying the whole "Here's [insert old password here] I was not payed to do so I know who you are blah blah" and it did spook me for a second, but after I realized I changed all my major accounts' passwords a few days ago in a recent panic attack along with all the others that have been changed prior, I laughed it off and deleted it. Strangely enough it showed up in my spam not too long after I checked the Wallpaper forum (first and last page only, apparently it's unsecure.) and Haveibeenpwned to see if my email was pwned. Not a big surprise it was, otherwise I wouldn't have got the spam. Also probably should've kept that spam to report considering it must've been personally sent if they have traffic to that site... Now thinking about it however I probably do have old accounts creeping around way out in the 2000's golden era that may be using that old password, and I just still haven't managed to find them to either fix or delete them. Is their any foolproof solution to finding these old accounts, or is it still a wild goose chase to go through and find every single one of them? I always have my inbox clean, so I have no real way I've searching way back in the past to find them besides painfully going through all the sites I remember using, and there still may be some out there. I feel like the best way to fix this old account solution would be to be able to ping all accounts via sending you an email from your email(s), but I guess that'd be going heavily against privacy, and if you ever were to get hacked / breached they could use that against you and obtain everything a lot faster...it truly is a questionable predicament.
  15. Here's the ADWcleaner and SophosAV logs: SophosVirusRemovalTool.log AdwCleaner[S01].txt AdwCleaner[C01].txt Also probably going to add the Malwarebytes extension to Firefox just to be safe.
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