Friday, February 22, 2008

Protect Your Yahoo Messenger Client

Yahoo Messenger is probably the most popular instant messaging client on the internet because it provides many more features than a single chat function. Yahoo’s downloadable application was improved several times with exciting and innovative abilities, allowing you to send files to your contacts, use emoticons and audibles, talk through VoIP protocol, communicate via webcam and even send your contact details to all your friends. At this time, Yahoo Messenger is
challenged by multiple other chat clients like Google Talk, Windows Live
Messenger or Skype, but Yahoo is continuously working on it to make it even more powerful.

Because I’m currently a Yahoo Messenger user, I decided to write the most useful tricks that help you protect your ID, as well as the chat client from viruses or other threats.
Some time ago, a lot of tiny tools that were exploiting a Yahoo Messenger flaw were available for download on a lot of websites although they were regarded as illegal utilities. At that time, there were some tricks that could block the malicious programs but only some clients used them.

Every time a user reports a problem with the Yahoo Messenger client, other "experienced" members advise him to install an antivirus solution bundled with a firewall or even reinstall the Yahoo application. Well, you should know that sometimes, it’s enough to ignore a malicious contact from your list and the problems are fixed. I prefer to use the "Ignore anyone who is not in my contact list" option because this way, I avoid attackers or other dangerous users that can perform nasty activities on my chat client.

Also, if you doubt anyone for attacking you, ignore him immediately and decline any file transfer request, photo sharing or other type of invitation. It can be also useful to avoid communicating with an unknown contact until you’re sure he’s not an attacker.

If you still think you’re vulnerable to attacks, you should install Y!Tunnel, a downloadable application that was especially created to improve the security of the Yahoo Messenger instant messaging client. "This easy-to-use application will provide additional features to Yahoo! Messenger including better connections to voice servers, endless ignore bin, enhanced privacy, font and style filtering and spam blocking. In addition to these enhanced features, Y!TunnelPro also provides the highest level of protection available against abusive and malicious chatroom activity," it is mentioned in the description of the service.

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