Internet Safety and Security

In todays world safety and security are very important, the same holds true for internet safety and security, new viruses and spyware are created on a daily basis and the best defense is a strong offense. Im creating this page with tips on how to keep your computer safe and secure and some things you can do should your computer become infected with spyware or viruses.

First what are the threats?.
1. Viruses: A dangerous computer program with the ability to generate copies of itself, thereby spreading, also usually containing a destructive payload that is activated under certain circumstances.

2. Spyware/Malware: Any software that covertly gathers information through your internet connection without your knowledge usually for advertising purposes. Tip: almost any free program contains spyware, almost nothing is really free they have to generate income somehow, so avoid all free software unless its recommended from a reputable source.

3. Phishing: When a hacker sends you an email falsely claiming to be a legitimate business, in the hopes of gaining access to passwords or other sensitive data they can then use to steal your identity and access your accounts. I myself recieved a phishing email supposedly from ebay and almost fell for it. Dont click on links in the email, pull up the website yourself in a new browser window, if its a secure website like a bank look for the https: in the address bar the "S" verifies its secure.

4. Pop-up ad: Unwanted ads that Pop up in a new browser window. Use the Google tool bar with popup blocker included with the Googlepack.

Now for some solutions. These are the measures you should take at a minimum,
1. A good antivirus
2. Antipyware heres a link to some free antivirus and antispyware thats pretty good. AVG Antivirus/antispyware
3. Keep your operating system up to date withe the latest updates from microsoft. You should be running windows XP with at least service pack 2, you can check in the control panel under system, if not get it from windows update rightaway.
4. If your running Windows XP, service pack 2 includes a Firewall be sure its turned on, check in control panel firewall, or use a Firewall solution from another vendor. Try Zone Alarms free firewall Heres some other links to help Protect your computer
5. Update your web browser to the latest version of Internet Explorer or Use Firefox with the google toolbar. Enable the anti-phishing filter that comes with both of these browsers.

6. Use a spam filter or have at least 2 email addresses, One for trusted friends and associates, the other to give out to other organizations as needed.

7. Create a separate limited account for kids (control panel, user accounts)and enable internet explorers content advisor (control panel, internet options, content) to filter what the kids are able to access. Also keep the kids computer in the family room where they can be supporvised.

8. Use common sense, dont open unknown email attatchments, dont click on links provided in emails, dont surf on disreputable web sites, dont install free programs unless your sure they are from reputable companies. Im sure Ive left something out, but thats most of it, heres some more info related to Internet safety and secutity

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