Summer's coming. And with it...new computer viruses!
Why would summer be any different? Because summer means there are a lot of
bored teenagers out there. Sorry kids, but it's true. Many recent viruses
were written by bored teens who are techies and want to make their so called
I'm sure you've heard about the Sasser virus that has been hitting computers
and causing them to continually reboot. In case you missed recent news, the
author of that virus was
caught. The culprit? An 18 year old in Germany. It's a fact. Teens today
have grown up with this technology and they're pretty good at using it...as
well as abusing it. They don't realize the implications...until they're busted!
This means that a lot of technically advanced kids will be sitting at their
computers this summer thinking of things to keep them busy. Let's hope most
of them think of ways to improve society!
Besides hope, you'll want to make sure your system has the latest updates
to keep it protected and that your antivirus has the latest definitions
to protect your data. But you can't just depend on technology to keep you
safe! YOU must be vigilant! Don't get online with a space
cadet mentality! Pay attention and take precautions.
- Make sure you have a firewall enabled on your computer to protect it from
- Don't open attachments from people you don't know.
- Make sure you have a working antivirus program on your system.
- Download the latest antivirus definitions or learn how to automatically
enable this feature in your antivirus program.
- Update your system with the latest patches and security fixes, but DON'T
do this by clicking any links in an unsolicited email! Go to the source
web site to download the files.
TechTrax has some articles to help you understand what all the safeguards
above mean. I'll list these articles, along with other links to sources,
at the end of this article.
Technology companies are also quite busy fighting viruses. Not only by making
sure their software is secure from every possible direction, but also by
offering rewards for information and helping to get laws passed to help them
fight these issues.
Okay, so we've all read the bogus
emails saying Bill Gates
will give you money for sending emails to test marketing capabilities. Microsoft
is offering cash rewards for information leading to the arrest of virus authors. And this
one is true!
So as they used to say in Hill Street Blues...be careful out there!
- By using the most modern software available and keeping it patched with
the latest security fixes, you'll help yourself by becoming much less
vulnerable while surfing. This Microsoft Windows link will scan your
computer and let you know if you need to update the security on your
computer with available patches. Check it often! Or better, enable the
automatic update feature in Windows. Windows
- Microsoft Office also offers free computer scanning to help you identify
security holes if you are using Microsoft Office. Office
- Signing up for Microsoft security newsletter is a great way to really
know what's going on. You can sign up HERE.
If you prefer not to sign up for this email notification service, make
a point to stop by their security site now and then to keep up with current
issues. You'll find that site here: http://www.microsoft.com/security/
- Antivirus companies Symantec (Norton) and McAfee both offer free scanners
to check for viruses, as well as removal tools. We'll
hope you are running one of programs continually on your system
to keep you safe. But if not...run a scan to see if you have problems
now. AND BUY SOME ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE!
- Protect your privacy from programs that get into your computer when you
surf and track your activities, while on the web, for marketing purposes.
A free version of Ad Aware will help you detect and remove these invaders.
Get it here.