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Two More Portable Anonymous Web Browsers

Two More Portable Anonymous Web Browsers
Two More Portable Anonymous Web Browsers


Patch and Spyware Management: An Integrated Approach to Network 

How to Build a Real Time Enterprise. Free White Paper! 

Reducing the Cost of IT Compliance: Streamlining the IT Compliance 
Life Cycle 

=== CONTENTS ==================================================
IN FOCUS: Two More Portable Anonymous Web Browsers

   - Two IE Vulnerabilities Allow Unwanted Code Execution 
   - EMC Forms New Security Division
   - Recent Security Vulnerabilities

   - Security Matters Blog: New Tool: WindowsZones
   - FAQ: Join Vista to a Domain
   - Microsoft Learning Paths for Security: Identity and Access 

   - Keep an Eye on Your Files
   - Wanted: Your Reviews of Products 




=== SPONSOR: Shavlik ==========================================
Patch and Spyware Management: An Integrated Approach to Network 
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console as a comprehensive approach to maximizing network security. 

=== IN FOCUS: Two More Portable Anonymous Web Browsers ========   by Mark Joseph Edwards, News Editor, mark at ntsecurity / net

A few weeks ago after I wrote about Browzar (see the article at the URL 
below), a few people wrote to criticize the tool. That's to be 
expected, and I do respect their opinions even though they differ from 
mine. Since then, I've been looking around for other browsers that can 
help protect privacy above and beyond the typical browser features of 
being able to manually clear history and cache data. So far I've found 
two tools that fit the bill. 

The first tool,'s Mozilla Firefox - Portable Edition 
(at the URL below) is based on Mozilla Foundation's Firefox code but 
was independently developed by John T. Haller. First released in June 
2004, Firefox Portable seems to be kept up to date, including the 
addition of any necessary security fixes soon after vulnerabilities are 

Firefox Portable is designed specifically to be copied onto portable 
media. You can install it on a small USB flash drive (or CD-ROM) and 
use it on nearly any PC that doesn't have its USB ports or CD-ROM drive 
locked down. Like regular Firefox, the portable version lets you 
install extensions and themes, but unlike Firefox, Firefox Portable 
helps prevent storage of usage information. Your download history is 
deleted when you shut the browser down cleanly (but not, for example, 
when you terminate the FirefoxPortable.exe process manually), URL 
history and form data storage are disabled by default, and no disk 
cache is used by default. However, you can configure Firefox Portable 
to write such data to the portable media (if the media is writeable) 
and use cache if you like.

I tested Firefox Portable, and it works just fine. The self-extracting 
executable dumps all the required files into one directory tree that 
you select. The installed size is about 16.5MB. Note that Firefox 
Portable won't run if another instance of Firefox is already running. 

The second tool I found is Torpark (at the URL below). Developed by 
Hacktivismo, which "[operates] under the aegis of the [infamous] Cult 
of the Dead Cow (cDc)," Torpark is relatively new and based on the 
Firefox Portable code. It includes a very interesting added benefit in 
that it uses the The Onion Router (Tor) network. 

In case you aren't aware of it, Tor (at the URL below) is software that 
builds a network of relatively anonymous servers by chaining them 
together automatically to encrypt and route traffic to and from its 
destination. At its core, a Tor client acts as a Sockets (Socks) proxy. 

According to the developers, "Torpark comes pre-configured, requires no 
installation, can run off a USB memory stick, and leaves no tracks 
behind in the browser or computer." Sounds pretty good, right? There is 
however one drawback: Tor can be very slow at times. Tor volunteer 
server operators can regulate how much bandwidth they devote to their 
Tor server, and it seems that many Tor server operators allocate only a 
small amount. But if you really need anonymous Web surfing ability, 
some lag time is probably worth it. 

I tested Torpark and it's really easy to use. The installation process 
is the same as for Portable Firefox except that Torpark also installs 
the Tor client. The installed size is about 27MB. The custom Web 
interface includes all the regular Firefox controls along with two 
additional buttons: one to enable or disable use of the Tor network (so 
you can use Torpark without Tor to just browse without encryption) and 
another to flush the Tor circuit. The latter feature causes Tor to 
chain together a new set of Tor servers to use as your path out to the 
Internet. Flushing the circuit doesn't always result in a faster 
circuit, but at times it might, so the feature is helpful.

I'll also point out for the Browzar detractors that neither Firefox 
Portable nor Torpark include any spyware or adware. Both let you 
customize the search tool just like Firefox does. 

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=== SECURITY NEWS AND FEATURES ================================
Two IE Vulnerabilities Allow Unwanted Code Execution
   Two new vulnerabilities were recently discovered in Microsoft 
Internet Explorer (IE). One allows intruders to install shell code and 
take subsequent actions, including installing malware. 
   The other, located in the DirectAnimation ActiveX control, also lets 
unwanted code be run on an affected system. 

EMC Forms New Security Division
   EMC has completed the acquisition of RSA Security and has acquired 
Network Intelligence. EMC will form a new security division based on 
the RSA brand. Former chief executive officer at RSA, Art Coviello, 
will lead the division as president and will serve as an executive vice 
president at EMC. Network Intelligence will become a business unit of 
the new division. 

Other Recent Security Vulnerabilities
   If you subscribe to this newsletter, you also receive Security 
Alerts, which inform you about recently discovered security 
vulnerabilities. You can also find information about these 
discoveries at 

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=== GIVE AND TAKE =============================================
by Mark Joseph Edwards, 

   WindowsZones is a new tool that claims to be able to protect 
Internet applications against zero-day exploits and to move those 
applications between security zones on the fly. 

FAQ: Join Vista to a Domain
by John Savill, 

Q: How do I join my Windows Vista machine to a domain?

Find the answer at 

   Use the resources listed on the Microsoft Learning Paths Web page to 
get in-depth information about identity and access management. Find out 
how to provide a secure environment for managing user identities, 
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internal and external users. 

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=== PRODUCTS ================================================== by Renee Munshi, 

Keep an Eye on Your Files
   IS Decisions announces FileAudit 3.0, which lets you track accesses 
of and changes to Windows files. New features in FileAudit 3.0 include 
a redesigned GUI, which you can use from the FileAudit console or from 
Windows Explorer; the ability to display access history in printable 
reports that you can schedule to run automatically, the ability to 
schedule archiving of access events occurring on one or more systems to 
a database; and the ability to filter events (e.g., by type, user, 
timeframe). Pricing starts at $125 per audited system. For more 
information, go to 

WANTED: your reviews of products you've tested and used in 
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=== RESOURCES AND EVENTS ======================================   For more security-related resources, visit 

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Mark Joseph Edwards discusses emerging spyware threats, including 
rootkits, keyloggers, and distribution methods. On-demand Web seminar 

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