Bleeping Computer

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Bleeping Computer
Type of site
computer help site
Owner Bleeping Computer LLC.
Created by Lawrence Abrams
Website www.bleepingcomputer.com
Registration Optional
Launched January 26, 2004[1]

Bleeping Computer is a computer help site founded by Lawrence Abrams in 2004. It is a resource site for answering computer, security, and technical questions. All services to the public are free, including malware and rootkit cleanup of infected computers and removal instructions on rogue anti-spyware programs. PC World magazine wrote about "sites like Bleeping Computer, where experienced volunteers offer tailored advice",[2][3] and linked to a TechHive page that called it a good place to find unbiased information.[4] Analysis by Bleeping Computer editors on newly detected ransomware families has been covered in major media ranging from NBC News to the BBC.

In early February 2016, Enigma Software, the developers of the anti-malware suite SpyHunter, filed a lawsuit[5] against Bleeping Computer in response to a negative review of SpyHunter, alleging a campaign to damage the reputation of their company and product.[6] Bleeping Computer has since requested financial aid from their readers to help pay legal fees arising from the lawsuit.[7] At the beginning of August 2016, Bleeping Computer are filing[8] their own lawsuit against Enigma Software for an alleged long-running smear campaign against Bleeping Computer.[8]

Community[edit]

Members, volunteers and staff[edit]

In May 2014 there were over 640,000 registered members, the vast majority 'regular' members.[9] The membership also includes a significant proportion of members who work for the site, in varied roles, as volunteers. Volunteer roles include the Malware Response Team and Trainees and also BC Advisors. The site has an administration team, comprising the Administrator (owner), Site Administrators, Global Moderators and Moderators.[10]

Forums[edit]

Bleeping Computer's forums have subsections devoted to several operating systems, broad classes of application software, and malicious software removal, as well as sections for web browsers, home and small business networking and the macOS operating system.

Malware removal[edit]

Bleeping Computer offers free one-to-one malware removal help to registered users via its support forums. All malware removal help is provided by volunteers trained in the use of anti-malware tools such as HijackThis, DDS,[11] OTL, GMER, Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, and Rkill,[12] developed by Abrams.

Ransomware work[edit]

The CryptoLocker ransomware, believed to have appeared on 5 September 2013,[13] was reported on Bleeping Computer the following day, with a long thread discussing the malware and recommended responses.[14] Since then, Bleeping Computer's ransomware support topic forum has become very active, being often the first place where ransomware infections were spotted and reported.

Bleeping Computer editors, along with help from security researchers, have published reports on various ransomware families on a regular basis, as they're spotted in the wild. Their work has been recognized, acknowledged, and cited in various articles in most major media that covers technology and IT security news. The list includes ArsTechnica,[15] the BBC,[16] Business Insider,[17] Computerworld,[18] Engadget,[19] Geek.com,[20] Graham Cluley,[21] HackRead,[22] IBTimes,[23] KrebsOnSecurity,[24] Motherboard,[25] NBC News,[26] Networkworld,[27] PCMag,[28] SC Magazine,[29] SecurityWeek,[30] Softpedia,[31] The Register,[32] ThreatPost,[33] Tom's Guide,[34] and ZDNet.[35]

Many times, free decryptors to unlock files encrypted by various ransomware families have been released through the forums or the site's news section.

Resources[edit]

Tutorials[edit]

Bleeping Computer has a large library of free tutorials [36] covering the basics of TCP/IP, hardware configuration, partition management, internet security, and other topics. The site also includes mini guides such as "How to Re-Install Windows", "How to Install and Use Ubuntu or any version of Linux", and guides on removal of common malware infections.

Malware removal training program[edit]

Bleeping Computer offers a malware removal training program[37] at Sophomore, Junior, and Senior levels. Many graduates of the program remain active in the forum's malware assistance section. It is UNITE-accredited.[38]

Databases[edit]

Bleeping Computer maintains several databases of common programs, startup entries and files found in Microsoft Windows operating systems, including malware, with information on them.

Independence and funding[edit]

The US Federal Trade Commission requires disclosure of all relationships with manufacturers and advertisers of products and services described or recommended, and Bleeping Computer endorses this policy.[39] The site discloses instances where commission or advertising fees are generated, saying "We have outlined our product review standards and the various ways we use affiliate links", and that advertising will have no bearing on how products are reviewed.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bleeping Computer Technical Support Forums". 
  2. ^ "Coordinated Malware Resists Eradication". 
  3. ^ "Junkbusters!". 
  4. ^ "Junkbusters!". 
  5. ^ "Enigma Software sues BleepingComputer for a smear campaign". Digital Trends. Retrieved 2016-03-16. 
  6. ^ Smith, Ms. "BleepingComputer under free speech attack as SpyHunter makers sue over bad review". Network World. Retrieved 2016-03-16. 
  7. ^ "Help BleepingComputer Defend Freedom of Speech". BleepingComputer. Retrieved 2016-03-16. 
  8. ^ a b "BleepingComputer's lawsuit document" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-08-10. 
  9. ^ Bleeping Computer's Member List Archived December 23, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ "Bleeping Computer Membership Descriptions - BleepingComputer Announcements, Comments, & Suggestions". 
  11. ^ "Am I Infected? What do I do? How do I get help? Who is helping me? - Am I infected? What do I do?". 
  12. ^ "RKill - What it does and What it Doesn't - A brief introduction to the program - Anti-Virus, Anti-Malware, and Privacy Software". 
  13. ^ Kelion, Leo (24 Dec 2013). "Cryptolocker ransomware has 'infected about 250,000 PCs'". BBC. Retrieved 24 Dec 2013. 
  14. ^ "Cryptolocker Hijack program". BleepingComputer.com. 6 September 2013. Archived from the original on 13 September 2013. 
  15. ^ "New ransomware installs in boot record, encrypts hard disk [Updated]". 
  16. ^ "Easy-to-use ransomware code discovered". 4 January 2016 – via www.bbc.com. 
  17. ^ "Hackers are now offering 'customer support' to the victims they extort money from". 
  18. ^ Storm, Darlene. "Thugs developing cat-themed ransomware for Androids and Hitler ransomware for PCs". 
  19. ^ "The TeslaCrypt ransomware has been killed by its creators". 
  20. ^ "Jigsaw ransomware wants to play a game with you - News - Geek.com". 
  21. ^ "New ransomware comes with Live Chat feature". 17 February 2016. 
  22. ^ Waqas (21 October 2016). "New Ransomware Asks User to Play Click Me Game while Encrypting Data". 
  23. ^ Murdock, Jason (12 May 2016). "The Jigsaw ransomware has rebranded from creepy to NSFW". 
  24. ^ "Ransomware Getting More Targeted, Expensive — Krebs on Security". 
  25. ^ "New Annoying Ransomware Forces Victims to Take Online Surveys". 
  26. ^ "CryptoLocker crooks launch new 'customer service' website for victims". 
  27. ^ Smith, Ms. "Ransomware targets government, others honor Donald Trump and Voldemort". 
  28. ^ "Malware Uses Fake PCMag Review as 'Proof'". 
  29. ^ "Nullbyte ransomware going after Pokemon Go players". 2 September 2016. 
  30. ^ "Cerber Ransomware Can Now Kill Database Processes - SecurityWeek.Com". 
  31. ^ Cimpanu, Catalin. "Free Decrypter Available for Philadelphia Ransomware". 
  32. ^ Hacking; Security; Cybercrime; Vulnerability; Malware; worldwide, Profit-hungry Ghouls raid corporate networks; menace, Fake Android update; market, Shark bosses sink teeth into booming ransomware. "Hitler 'ransomware' offers to sell you back access to your files – but just deletes them". 
  33. ^ "Bleeping Computer - Threatpost - The first stop for security news". 
  34. ^ "Jigsaw Ransomware Deletes Thousands of Your Files". 13 April 2016. 
  35. ^ Osborne, Charlie. "New ransomware skips files, encrypts your whole hard drive - ZDNet". 
  36. ^ "Tutorials & Tech Support Guide". 
  37. ^ "BleepingComputer.com - Malware and Spyware Removal School Admissions". 
  38. ^ Unified Network of Instructors and Trained Eliminators, list of schools Archived August 4, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  39. ^ "About BleepingComputer.com". 

External links[edit]