A common question we receive on the site is from people wondering what the various members groups are and how they can join them. As a service to our members we have created this post to answer these questions. The Bleeping Computer Member groups and descriptions are as follows:Admin & Site Admins
The Bleeping Computer Owner, and overall Admin of the site and forums, is Grinler. Grinler, or Lawrence Abrams, manages the operational aspects of Bleeping Computer. Grinler is the highest ranking Staff Member, followed by the Site Admins. The Admins have the final say when appointing all other staff positions and are involved in approving Malware Response Trainee/Team candidates.
The Admin(s) handle all aspects of the site's day-to-day operations. This includes setting configuration options, managing user accounts, and fixing site problems. The Admin(s) are also responsible for virtually all of the inner workings of the forum software features. The Admins are the final arbiter in any decisions affecting the Bleeping Computer forums operational aspect.
The current list of Admins can be found here
.Global Moderators & Moderators
A Bleeping Computer Global Moderator or Moderator is someone granted special powers by the Admins to enforce the rules of Bleeping Computer Forums. All moderators on all forums can move discussions to different sections of the forum, "close" discussions to prevent users from continuing to discuss them, as well as edit the content of individual postings. Moderators of both levels answer questions (or help people with problems), and "pin" discussions so they remain visible in their forum section even if no new postings are made to them. Global Moderators have a few additional powers above that of regular Moderators, the most important of which is the ability to suspend forum posting privileges of members who violate forum rules.
The current list of Global Moderators can be found here
The current list of Moderators can be found here
.Bleeping Computer Advisor
Bleeping Computer Advisors are regular forum contributors who have been nominated by their peers or other members of the staff as a result of their consistently high quality and expert responses to people's questions in the forums; Advisors can be trusted to give correct and understandable answers to our member's questions. Advisors also assist the Moderators with overseeing that the forum is running properly, and smoothly.
The current list of Bleeping Computer Advisors can be found here
.Malware Response Instructor
A Bleeping Computer Malware Response Instructor is a Malware Response Team member who has been selected by the Admin(s) to teach the trainees about computer security and how to use specialized tools for malware removal and analysis. The Instructors also play a pivotal role in determining how the trainee program evolves. Trainees look to a Malware Response Instructor for advice and guidance throughout the course. Instructors have moderator capabilities in all Malware removal related forums, including the Study Hall. The Team Instructors have the job of deciding when trainees have sufficiently proven they are "Malware Response Team" material, and make recommendations to the Admins when such a time has come.
The current list of Malware Response Instructors can be found here
.Malware Response Team Member
A Bleeping Computer Malware Response Team Member is a volunteer who has permission to respond to Malware removal logs in the Bleeping Computer Malware removal forum. These members have proven themselves to be highly qualified in the removal of malware and are thus given permission to help people with spyware removal via Malware removal logs. A Malware Response Team Member has moderator abilities in Malware removal related forums allowing them to open, close, or merge topics together. The main ethos of the group is the word "team"; these volunteers will often ask various other team members for help if needed. As staff members, the team often works with the moderators by reporting spam posts or informing of members who have broken the site rules. The Malware Response Team members also play a part in the running of the Study Hall, where they are encouraged to answer the questions posted by trainees.
The current list of Malware Response Team members can be found here
.Malware Study Hall Admin
A Bleeping Computer Malware Study Hall Admin oversees the Malware Response Instructors as well as the trainees along with managing the curriculum and learning tools for the Malware Removal Training program. The Study Hall Admin is the staff member who promotes the trainees as they progress through the stages of the Study Hall using input from the Instructor team. They also handle the requests to join the Study Hall with the help of the Admin team.
The current list of Malware Study Hall Admins can be found here
A Bleeping Computer Malware Study Hall Trainee is a member who has volunteered and has been accepted to join the Bleeping Computer Malware Study Hall training program, which involves gaining the knowledge and studying the theory behind the analysis of Malware removal logs, with the aim of eventually joining the Malware Response Team when Admins and Malware Response Instructors feel they have reached a sufficient level of ability. A trainee has no moderator privileges. The trainee program is split up into three groups, the "Malware Study Hall Sophomore", the "Malware Study Hall Junior" and the "Malware Study Hall Senior". An explanation of the three groups follows. While the distinctions are very fine, all trainees work in a community, with the aim of helping each other in their goal to join the Malware Response Team.Malware Study Hall Sophomore
A Malware Study Hall Sophomore is a trainee in the use of specialized malware removal applications at the entry level. They work on understanding the basics of security and become familiarized with the basic tools of the trade. This is where all new trainees start their journey.
The current list of Malware Study Hall Sophomores can be found here
.Malware Study Hall Junior
A Malware Study Hall Junior is a trainee that has progressed to the intermediate level. After the basics have been covered and the trainees become more familiar with the tools and the theory, they are moved up to Junior level. That is where the practical aspect of the program is applied. These trainees work actively with the instructing staff and other Team members on example logs and exercises to help them further their learning. When they have reached the end of this part of the program with satisfaction, they are moved up to the next level.
The current list of Malware Study Hall Juniors can be found here
.Malware Study Hall Senior
A Bleeping Computer Malware Study Hall Senior has proven that he or she is dedicated to the task at hand, and has shown promising signs of progressing through the trainee program. These trainees work actively with the instructors and other team members and you will find them on the open forums helping members with problems under the assistance and supervision of instructors. That is where they can get the real world experience they need before they are given Team member status. Once the admins and instructing staff are satisfied that they are ready, they are moved up to Malware Response Team member status.
The current list of Malware Study Hall Seniors can be found here
A Bleeping Computer Member is someone who registers and validates their membership and utilizes the site to their advantage. Some members are active participants while others are not as active; but all members are valued for whatever they bring to the forum/site and community at large. It is not a requirement of membership to be active on the forums.Banned Member
A deactivated member is one who has asked to have their account deactivated. When this occurs we place the user in this group, change their password to a random one, and remove all topic or forum subscriptions. In the future if they would like to reactivate their account they can notify us.