(or, 6 things to make your computer safer)
- Don't panic! Much of what you hear about will probably not
affect the majority of home computers. All this Code Red and Nimda
stuff that has been (and still is) going around is harmless to
most computers. Keep a clear head, and move to #2
- Be smart. Look at what you have, and figure out how to protect
that. Also plan ahead for possible expansions and how to protect
that. Also, don't get a $20,000 solution for a $2,000 computer, or
a $20 solution for a $200,000 network.
- Research the possible solutions. groups.google.com
is a good place to start, it'll allow you to search a large number
of newsgroups in one big swoop without having to know what a
newsgroup is! www.practicallynetworked.com
also has a large number of reviews on hardware and software
- Know what to protect yourself from. There's more to security
than preventing other computers from exploiting vulnerabilities on
your computer. There's also viruses, worm and trojan horses. That
means you'll need a good anti-virus solution as well as something
to prevent unwanted connections to your computer.
- Don't forget about E-Mail. The #1 source of virus/worm
infections today is e-mail. During the big SirCam epidemic, I
would see up to 100 e-mails per day containing the SirCam worm.
Your two choices are: a) never run any attachments you receive in
e-mail without scanning them first, or b) Have some sort of
software scanning your e-mail first.
- Don't panic! I already said that, but once you get your security
hardware and/or software up and running, you will see things that
you had no idea was going on. Keep your cool. Most of what you'll
see is harmless, especially since you just secured your computer(s)
from most of this. I've seen way too many people who go way
overboard with the smallest things.
© 1999-2005 Lars M. Hansen