USB-Based Protection 

An extra “g” and “e” changed a Yellowstone bear into a computer protection device.
Yoggie Pico USB security device
click image to enlarge

Let me start with a thank-you directed towards the technical support guy at Yoggie who was invaluable in getting this next product up and running on my system. The product in question is Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico which has been developed to provide, what is described as, Pentagon level protection when venturing out on to the Internet. But before going into more detail about the product, let me deal with the initially installation problems I encountered on two different computers.

My first attempt was carried out on a XP (SP2) based laptop. After several minutes of activity, a pop-up box appeared stating that an error had occurred. This error had the code 303136 which, to say the least, was hardly the most informative response. Repeating the process brought the same result. Switching to a desktop system running Windows Vista Home Premium produced results that were different but again ended in a failure to install. After a period of activity the installation ground to a halt with no activity being detected for the best part of an hour before I ended the impasse with a system reboot.

In stepped Yoggie technical support with a solution to resolve both problems. Once I had turned off the Windows firewall, the installation on the Vista machine ran its full course. The problem with the laptop required a different solution. In this case I had to disconnect my Broadband modem until the installation was completed. I then had to reconnect the modem so that my details and product serial number could be registered.

Yoggie Pico Gatekeeper - in hand
click image to enlarge

Central to the Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico method of providing protection is a stubby USB device. The size of this device might require you to use a USB extension lead, as happened in my case, if the Yoggie unit needs to sit alongside other USB devices.  While looking like a USB flash drive, the Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico is a miniature computer. It is powered by a 520MHz chip with 128MB of memory running a Linux based operating system. It is this device which takes over the task of providing protection. The host computer will then be freed from this task and be able to concentrate totally on other functions without setting aside any valuable resources for security matters.

Before actually using the Yoggie device, you should run a scan of your hard disk to detect any threats that might already be resided. A copy of Kaspersky anti-virus software is included as part of this package. In test this USB based security blanket was able to resist various attempts at malware intrusions without interfering with other activities. Included in the designated Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico sphere of influence are areas dealing with anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-phishing, anti-spyware, intrusion detection and prevention, transparent email and Web proxies, parental control and a firewall.

While, for some, not knowing about failed attempts to infiltrate a system might appeal, others prefer the reassurance that possible intrusions have been blocked. Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico will provide information as to the number of issues relating to firewall, intrusions detected and prevented plus any malware issues. This information is available from a password-protected Management Console feature that is accessible from a system tray icon. The Management Console using dials to show the current risk level and attempted intrusions detected plus it allows you to make adjustments to settings relating to security, system, network and email.

The Yoggie Gatekeeper Pico kit consists of the USB device, software CD, and a small Quick Start Guide. You also get an additional cap for the USB device. If, like me, you tend to misplace this type of item, this could prove useful. Both the original and spare cap has an attached clip to avoid the device bouncing around when carried in a pocket. The product requires Windows XP or Vista and is available for £77.95, including shipping, from the first link below - also included in that price are 12 months of software updates. The product requires Windows XP or Vista and is available for $100.85, including shipping, from the first link below - also included in that price are 12 months of software updates. The product requires Windows XP or Vista and is available for €101,94, from the first link below - also included in that price are 12 months of software updates.



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