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CrowdStrike is a disgrace. You don’t need it. Windows Defender plus commonsense works just fine

I dumped my small holding of CrowdStrike (CRWD) this morning. Good riddance.

First of all, it’s a total disgrace that Crowdstrike, a cyber security company, could wreak so much damage worldwide by simply being sloppy. One line of bad code. Yuch!

Second, I searched CrowdStrike’s web site for one miserable word of apology, or explanation. Nothing. Yuch.

Third, my friend, Ed, watched Cramer interview CrowdStrike’s CEO this morning. Ed said the interview was “unimpressive”. Ed also said “The guy doesn’t seem very bright, and did NOT inspire confidence.”

Fourth, I blame myself my idiocy. What was wrong with my tiny brain to own a stock with a P/E around 550. Yes, you read right — 550.

What exactly does Crowdstrike do? It’s biggest accomplishment is scaring the corporate and airline world into believing that that world absolutely desperately needs Crowdstrike. Without Crowdstrike “protection” their computer systems will be hacked, be vulnerable to ransomware and all their servers and computers will crash.

Guess what just happened? And it wasn’t hackers? It was the world’s great protector — Crowdstrike.

What’s got me going  is that no other cyber security does what Crowdstrike does. Others work in the background on servers and in the cloud. NOt Crowdstrike. Its software takes over your company — your laptop, your desktop. When it goes kapluey with a lousy “upgrade” — which just happened, you have to get to everyone’s machine and fix the damage that Crowdstrike has done — which may vary from one machine to another. Yes, one machine after another.

A huge job.

Now you know why it’s taking so incredibly long to fix airline (and others) worldwide and get passengers on planes.

Over 4,000 flights were canceled today. There were over 38,000 delays today.

That’s a massive f..kup. Thank you CrowdStrike.

Should you be worried for your Windows computer?

The simple answer is NO. Every Windows computer comes something called Windows Defender. It’s remarkably good cyber-security software which runs all the time you’re using your machine. It does a great job of protecting you from malicious code and viruses. In recent years, it’s gotten really good. Thank you Microsoft, which makes Defender.

However, the hackers, phishers and thieves are getting really good. You have to add some commonsense.

When you receive an email that wants you to do something, you need to be wary and look at who sent it and where it came from. If it isn’t from the company asking you for money or whatever, then bing it out. Delete it. Kill it.

Easy.

Bingo, Windows Defender plus commonsense will keep you happy and well. Do not confuse Widows Defender with Bitdefender., which I don’t recommend.

That’s my philosophy.

Excerpts from what the press wrote today on Crowdstrike and Microsoft problems

From CNBC:

CrowdStrike is what’s known as an “endpoint security” firm as it uses cloud technology to apply cyber protections to devices that are connected to the internet.

This differs from alternative approaches used by other cyber firms, which involve applying protection directly to back-end server systems.

“Many companies use [CrowdStrike software] and install it on all of their machines across their organization,” Nick France, chief technology officer at IT security firm Sectigo, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” on Friday.

“This is not a security incident or cyberattack. The issue has been identified, isolated and a fix has been deployed,” Kurtz said.

That fix could be hard to implement, though. Andy Grayland, chief information and security officer at threat intelligence firm Silobreaker, said that in order to implement a fix, engineers would have to go into each individual data center running windows.

They’d then have to log in, navigate to a certain CrowdStrike file, delete it and then reboot the entire system, he said.

“Where machines are encrypted, complex encryption keys also need to be entered manually. Unless Microsoft and CrowdStrike (if they are involved) pull something miraculous out of the bag, this could be painful to recover from.”

Where’s Nvidia going?

Some people think that the AI boom is ebbing because the financial returns from AI are slow in coming.

They also believe that Biden and Trump restrictions on sales of hot computer chips to China will hurt Nvidia.

There’s truth here, but meantime, US. data centers and U.S. cloud providers are eating up Nvidia chips like there was no tomorrow.

Sadly we have to wait until August 28 for Nvidia’s next earnings report.

I’m not selling Nvidia. I will buy more if it gets much cheaper.

If you’re depressed about the hit your portfolio has taken this week, go outside where I am — Columbia County, New York and savor the azure blue sky, the mild 70s temperature and the absence of humidity. And the empty tennis courts.

We live in interesting times.

Another blog this weekend. I promise. — Harry Newton

Latest two favorites. Thank you Bruce.