ANOTHER KIND OF BUBBLE

ForceFieldZoneAlarm’s new “ForceField” software wraps you in a virtual bubble of invisibility while you surf the web. Since you’re invisible, you can bank online or shop, without picking up any spyware or malware.

That’s great, but most important of all, it knocks out “key loggers,” which can be installed without your knowledge when you visit a malicious website. For those unfamiliar with this kind of snooping software, what key loggers do is record all your keystrokes. Keyloggers can then collect what you have typed, including your passwords, email messages and any banking or credit card transactions you may have made. In a test run against key logger programs, ForceField blocked ten out of ten.

There are three basic controls in ZoneAlarm’s ForceField:

1. You can click “Protection Activity” to see how many attacks were foiled.

2. Click “Site Status” to find out if the website you’re on is considered dangerous.

3. Click “Private Browser” to destroy all traces of your surfing history. We especially liked the fact that traveling from inside a bubble didn’t noticeably slow down our web surfing.

ForceField sells for $50 and comes with an extra program called Password Manager. This is particularly handy when you are surfing the web under the protection of “Private Browser.” Otherwise you would have to re-enter your passwords every time you go to a website that requires them.

Zone Alarm Force Field reminds us of the “Cone of Silence” in the old “Get Smart” comedies. The program is for PCs only and does not interfere with your other anti-virus or protection programs. There is a free trial available at ZoneAlarm.com.

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