Disable infrared file transfer

This final excerpt from Chapter 1 of Roberta Bragg's "Hardening Windows systems" explains how infrared file transfer is susceptible to attackers.

Hardening Windows Systems Get a glimpse inside Roberta Bragg's new book "Hardening Windows systems" with this series of book excerpts. This excerpt from Chapter 1, "An immediate call to action," explains how infrared file transfer is susceptible to attackers. Click for the complete book excerpt series or purchase the book.

Disable infrared file transfer

By default, laptop computers and many others have infrared capability. This can be used to transfer photos from digital cameras, address books from PDAs, and files from other computers. All of these conveniences are enabled by default, and an attacker might be able to transfer malicious code to an unsuspecting user's computer by doing a file transfer.

If attempts at file transfer pop up a dialog that asks users if they want a file transfer, can you be sure that users will always answer No? You don't have to take the chance. File transfer can be disabled by selecting to disable the Allow Others to Send Files to Your Computer Using Infrared Communications check box on the Wireless Link applet in Control Panel, as shown in Figure 1-3. If users need to transfer files, they can be trained to check the box, and then uncheck it.

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