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    Sunday
    Feb152009

    Using DropMyRights to Not Get Caught with Your Pants Down on the Internet by Chris Welber

    Using DropMyRight’s to Not Get Caught with Your Pants Down on the Internet

     

    There are many dangers on the Internet that can attack you if you are logged on as administrator, which most computers do by default. In this post I will show you how to protect yourself with a program called DropMyRights from Microsoft that will run Internet Browsers as non-administrator accounts, thus preventing malicious code from doing nefarious things.

     

    The recommended program which provides an extra layer of protection against bad web-sites attacking your computer is called DropmyRights, it’s from Microsoft and it is a program which was created by one of their engineers. What the program does to protect you is create what is called a “sandbox” or protected browsing area while you are on the internet. You see most people are setup on their computers as the highest user possible or as what us techies call the “administrator”, or “admin” user, a super user. The administrator user is a super user who can do anything on your computer including installing programs, changing computer settings, modifying critical system files, and so on. The issue is that most people who set themselves up as users on their computers and networks get setup as administrator users and this is especially true in small businesses because this way the users can install programs themselves which is a legitimate and good use of the power, but it also allows bad programs on bad web-sites to have full run of your computer, and to install themselves and run rampant in your computer and do whatever they please.

     

    There are other lower level user accounts which do not have all these rights and thus it’s much harder for them to do harm to your computer and in big companies with lots of IT resources this is the way the computers are setup, but most small, midsize business and home users are all running as the administrator level user. The way DropMyRights protects you is to run the program in question [in this case Internet Explorer or Firefox as examples of the most popular browsers ] as a regular user and not the Administrator user and thus the name DropMyRights because that’s exactly what it does.

     

    The program is a simple download and install from Microsoft and here is the link:

    http://download.microsoft.com/download/f/2/e/f2e49491-efde-4bca-9057-adc89c476ed4/dropmyrights.msi

     

    Just copy and paste this link into your browser to download it, and then run the program.

     

    When installing it I recommend putting under the Programs Directory [c:\program files\dropmyrights

     

    Then simply create a desktop shortcut which runs dropmyrights.exe and the program will accept the program which you want to run in the reduced rights mode as a command line option. I am providing standard shortcuts which you can just paste in as the entire shortcut if you have Internet Explorer or Firefox installed in the default locations.

     

    For Internet Explorer:

    “C:\Program Files \DropMyRights.exe” "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe"

     

    The quotes are required for any file paths which have spaces in them

     

    For Firefox:

    “C:\Program Files \DropMyRights.exe” "C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe"

     

    Well that’s about it! You’ll know you’ve got it setup correctly if you see a black window launch first and then Firefox or Internet Explorer will run afterwards.

     

    I hope this helps protect you and your computer, and a happy and safe browsing experience to us all.

     

     

    Chris

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