Sunday, October 16, 2005

useful PC protection tips

These days prime objective for hackers and online thieves has shifted from largely hitting major corporate networks to gaining control of home desktops. They steal data and collect processing power, and often it's done for financial gain. For example online banking, sometimes can be a very unsafe thing. I remember just few month ago, I heard my aunt were telling my mom about that one of her account just missed few thousand dollars and she got no idea where it went. So she checked with the bank, and they found out, someone transferred that money by using internet banking. She was so shocked, because no one knew about her account details and passwords etc. The bank now is investigating about this money, but seems still don't know where it went. But she thinks it might be that her computer got hacked and those data were stolen. Even though there are so many new ways to prevent hacking, but still the hacking skill is developing as well. So I brows the internet and try to find some simple tips to prevent it. I find them quiet useful. Now here are those 5 tips I found from CNN's website:

1. Patch and update.
Software companies are finding holes in their systems all the time -- sometimes because a hacker pointed them out.
Make sure you get all the appropriate patches that your operating system needs. If you're a Microsoft Windows user, get your monthly updates at If you use a Mac, check out updates at
On top of that you need anti-virus software to fight the viruses and worms that come creeping in off the Internet and a firewall to keep out the weirdos.
"The number one security you can put up is a firewall. A lot of people don't realize that they can have one on their PC, they think they are only for businesses. That's not true," says Michelle Petrovich at the Department of Homeland Security.
For a free trial of a firewall, check out or McAfee and Symantec also offer anti-virus software.
You can also prevent hacking by increasing the security settings on your Web browser, says Petrovich. It may limit some functions on Web sites, but it can protect your computer from being hacked.
To up the security setting on Internet Explorer, for example, check out the TOOLS menu, select Internet Options, Security, and then Custom Level. For other browsers, check their help menu.
2. Watch your wi-fi.
You may have heard about the "evil twins" that often attack over wi-fi.
If not, here's how it works. "Basically, an evil twin is someone who masquerades as a hot spot. They send out a stronger signal, so instead of connecting to the Internet via the hot spot, your computer connects to the evil twin. He can take all your information directly," says Richard Rushing, chief security officer at AirDefense, a wireless security software company.
In other words, it's not always the best idea to take your show on the road. Avoid using your laptop in public places where it may be easy for an evil twin to attack and steal passwords and other personal information saved on your computer.
3. Back that up.
You've got a virus, your computer crashes, and your whole wedding album is gone. Don't go there. Back up your computer files.
These days we're keeping everything on our computers, especially as we link them to our iPods and Blackberries: addresses, resumes, journal entries, music, movies, and priceless photos.
Don't risk losing it all. Experts recommend you buy an external hard drive and some automated backup software to copy the data from your computer regularly.
4. Be suspicious.
Viruses and worms are hiding even in the friendliest of places: e-mails, instant messages, and pop-up adds.
The Department of Homeland Security recommends computer users, "Don't download, install or run a program unless you know it's been written by a person or company that you trust."
Be wary of opening any unexpected attachments in e-mail and clicking on any URLs in instant messages. If you have children using your computer, make sure they understand these guidelines.
5. Don't share.
File-sharing is not just for teenagers. People of all ages are swapping music, movie and other entertainment files over the internet.
Aside from being illegal most of the time, file-sharing also puts you in hacker harm's way.
"Using this technology makes you susceptible to risks such as infection, attack, or exposure of personal information," DHS advises.
There is really no way to know whether the individual you are sharing files with is trustworthy. File-sharers might tack spyware, viruses, and worms onto the files without your knowing. You're best off avoiding the practice altogether.
If you are interested in more informations on online secure, you can visite this site:
I find it really usefull.


At 10:02 AM, Blogger David K said...

here is some more tips

6. Becareful what you download and what pages you browse. Most Trojan Horse virus comes from visiting weird sites.


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