Even the Webguy Gets a Virus

Over the holidays, my personal computer recieved an anwanted gift. I picked up a Trojan virus. It is completely my fault. It was a very difficult virus to remove. I want to give a shout out to my new friend Buckeye_Sam over at bleepingcomputers.com. He had some excellent advice that I will pass along here.

Here are some simple steps in order to keep your computer clean and secure:

1. Make your Internet Explorer more secure – This can be done by following these simple instructions:
Make your Internet Explorer more secure – This can be done by following these simple instructions:

  1. From within Internet Explorer click on the Tools menu and then click on Options.
  2. Click once on the Security tab
  3. Click once on the Internet icon so it becomes highlighted.
  4. Click once on the Custom Level button.
    1. Change the Download signed ActiveX controls to Prompt
    2. Change the Download unsigned ActiveX controls to Disable
    3. Change the Initialize and script ActiveX controls not marked as safe to Disable
    4. Change the Installation of desktop items to Prompt
    5. Change the Launching programs and files in an IFRAME to Prompt
    6. Change the Navigate sub-frames across different domains to Prompt
    7. When all these settings have been made, click on the OK button.

2. Use an AntiVirus Software - It is very important that your computer has an anti-virus software running on your machine. This alone can save you a lot of trouble with malware in the future. See this link for a listing of some online & their stand-alone antivirus programs:Virus, Spyware, and Malware Protection and Removal Resources

3. Update your AntiVirus Software - It is imperitive that you update your Antivirus software at least once a week (Even more if you wish). If you do not update your antivirus software then it will not be able to catch any of the new variants that may come out.

4. Use a Firewall - I can not stress how important it is that you use a Firewall on your computer. Without a firewall your computer is succeptible to being hacked and taken over. I am very serious about this and see it happen almost every day with my clients. Simply using a Firewall in its default configuration can lower your risk greatly.For a tutorial on Firewalls and a listing of some available ones see the link below:Understanding and Using Firewalls

5. Visit Microsoft’s Windows Update Site Frequently - It is important that you visit http://www.windowsupdate.com/ regularly. This will ensure your computer has always the latest security updates available installed on your computer. If there are new updates to install, install them immediately, reboot your computer, and revisit the site until there are no more critical updates.

6. Install Spybot - Search and Destroy – Install and download Spybot – Search and Destroy with its TeaTimer option. This will provide realtime spyware & hijacker protection on your computer alongside your virus protection. You should also scan your computer with program on a regular basis just as you would an antivirus software. A tutorial on installing & using this product can be found here:Using Spybot – Search & Destroy to remove Spyware , Malware, and Hijackers

7. Install Ad-Aware - Install and download Ad-Aware. ou should also scan your computer with program on a regular basis just as you would an antivirus software in conjunction with Spybot.A tutorial on installing & using this product can be found here:Using Ad-aware to remove Spyware, Malware, & Hijackers from Your Computer

8. Install SpywareBlaster - SpywareBlaster will added a large list of programs and sites into your Internet Explorer settings that will protect you from running and downloading known malicious programs.A tutorial on installing & using this product can be found here:Using SpywareBlaster to protect your computer from Spyware and Malware

9. Update all these programs regularly - Make sure you update all the programs I have listed regularly. Without regular updates you WILL NOT be protected when new malicious programs are released.

Thanks again Buckeye_Sam and the folks at bleepingcomputer.com.

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