Enjoy the Internet - But
Be sure to secure your computer first. It is easy and can be done at no cost. Now you don't have any excuse.
There are several different software setups that can be used to secure your computer before going on the Internet.
Easy and quick
Microsoft Security Essentials - probably the quickest and easiest way to secure a computer running Windows XP with SP3 and above. It is easy to use and MSE along with Windows firewall is the quickest way to secure your computer before going online.
If you are a little more tech savvy and would like would like a combination program that includes a more secure firewall, antivirus and spyware protection all in one neat little package then you may want to try Comodo Internet Security Suite.
The Comodo Internet Security Suite also included Anti-rootkit and bot protection, Auto Sandbox protection and prevents malware from boing installed. Comodo is also known for having the best firewall in the business.
And unlike many other softwares that are free only for personal use, Comodo is free for personal and business use.
For myself, I prefer individual programs to protect my systems. Here are the two I use.
Avast Free - Avast is an anti-vrus program. I have used this program lamost since it first came out. It does its job very well. In the years I have used Avast, it has served me well catching drive by downloads and several other nasties I ran into.
Online Armour Free - I will warn you ahead of time, Online Armour will ask permission for almost everything. So you will need to understand the workings of your computer. But if you want the best protection a free firewall can offer - then Online Armour is for you.
Anti-malware SoftwareThis category covers several styles of malware protection. There is no one software that can do everything for you, so a layered approach is alway recommended.
SpywareBlaster - SpywareBlaster (SB) is a preventative software. Think of the flu shot you get each winter. SB innoculates your system by setting a killbit in the registry in the places that malware tries to install itself. This killbit prevents the malware from completing its installation. A must have program. Need to check for updates monthly at a minimum.
Spybot Search and Destroy - This software has a dual purpose. It is a preventative software like SB above and it is also a scanner and removeal software. When you first install the program, you can have it innoculate your system like SB. It covers a few things that SB does not. You can also run it as a scanner for removal of spyware that may be on your system.
MalwareBytes - This software is a malware scanner. If you feel you have malware infection, this is the first software I would run, I have found it to be the best at cleaning out malware.
Your new computer
So you have a new computer and you want to set it up and protect it. Here is what I do with a new computer -
- Minimal protection you need before getting on the Internet is Antivirus software, so using your old computer or someone elses, downnload the AV program that you will be using to a jump drive so it can be install before getting on the Internet.
- Uninstall any trial versions of antivirus or security suite on the new computer so there will not be any conflicts when installing the program you have decided to use.
- Install the AV software or suite you will be using.
- Now you can connect to the Internet to download any other programs you choose to use. Windows firewall will be on to help protect your computer.
- Next I install Spywareblaster. Aftter finishing installation and at the main page look for the words "enable all protection" and click on it. Be sure to update on a regular basis.
- Now download and install SpyBot Search and Destroy. After installation, on the left side of the main page, look for "Immunize" and click on it. It will run a short scan to let you know the protection you need. Now near the top, just about in the middle you will see a green cross next to the word "Immunize". Click on it and let it do it's job. It will take several minutes to finish
- Last, if you chose to install a separate firewall, now is the time to do it. By installing it last, you will save a lot of clicks allowing the above programs to install.
- Be sure to also watch for the Windows update icon in the system tray. Once the operating system senses the Intenet connection, Windows update will start downloading the updates your computer needs. Alway be sure to install any updates the computer downloads. this is just as important as your firewall and AV software.