Posted by billspaced | 8:36 PM | 0 comments »

General guidelines about minimizing virus threats -

1. Keep up to date on Microsoft patches (if your Operating System is a Microsoft version). The easiest way to do so: open Internet Explorer, choose Tools from the menu, then select 'Windows Update.' When you get to Microsoft's web site, click on 'Scan for updates.' Only be concerned (for now) with any 'Critical Updates and Service Packs.' If any show up, install them. You can enable this update to run automatically. Refer to Microsoft's update page for more details (or email me if you like).

2. Keep your antivirus software up to date (you have antivirus software, don't you?). Check whatever vendor's site you use every day. Scan at least once per week, but ensure that real time scanning is enabled.

3. Get a firewall (especially those of you with an 'always-on' connection like DSL or cable. I personally use a hardware device for a firewall AND a software device - a Linksys cable/DSL router with firewall and ZoneAlarm for the software. You could get by with ZoneAlarm (it's free and easy to use). The Linksys router comes in handy if you are sharing your Internet connection between two or more computers.

4. Be wary of email attachments. Turn off Auto Preview if you have it enabled in your email program (like Microsoft Outlook). Don't open any emails that you did not solicit that have attachments.

5. Don't believe the emails you get. More often than not, these types of emails turn out to be hoaxes. Microsoft and the other companies I have mentioned generally do not email such notifications and if they do they do not use attachments. Refer to their web sites. For some really fun reading, check out http://www.symantec.com/avcenter/hoax.html.

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