Windows Internet Security Guide

Discussion in 'Reviews and Articles' started by Sycrat, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. Sycrat

    Sycrat New Member

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    Windows Internet Security Guide by Sycrat


    I’m writing this guide because the amount of people that get viruses and spyware and bloatware and adware and general cr*p really is starting to annoy me. This guide will pretty much cover what to do to ensure your computers safety whilst using it with the internet and what to do if you do get a virus and can’t get it fixed easily. Here goes..
    Note: If you are already infected with some type of virus these tips probably won’t work until you reformat your computer. Don’t know what that funny “reformat” word means? Refer to section “Giving It New Life”

    General Safety Tips
    This section is just about how to be safe and keep it that way whilst using the internet and your computer.. Some methods may even cost a wee bit of money, but it IS much easier and cheaper than being infected and having to waste time reformatting or getting a technician in to fix it. No particular order to these tips.. but they all add to your safety.

    Know your file extensions – A file extension is the .doc or .jpeg that comes after almost every file you will ever encounter. Here is a list of file extensions and what to do if you encounter them.

    o Image files (BMP, JPEG, JPG, PNG, ICO) – These are just image files, there are other variations of these files but these are the main ones, these files can not damage your computer, they’re just pictures, whoop-de-do.

    o Documents (DOC, XLS, PPT, PUB, ACCDB, TXT, RTF.. I could go on forever) – These files are documents that contain text or spreadsheets or whatever else they correspond with, these files open with Microsoft Office and other programs depending on what you have installed. They are generally harmless, with the exception of some, so If you know what the file is then you’re fine, but if you just downloaded it off the net and aren’t sure what it is.. Think about it first.

    o Compressed files/folders (ZIP, RAR, ISO, DMG, TAR, MDF, MDS) – These all contain files that have been compressed into one file for easy storage/transportation. They are harmless, the files inside them are not necessarily, before you use any of the files that get taken out of one of these archives, check the file extension against this list to make sure.

    o Programs (EXE, BAT, COM, VBS) – Now this is where it gets tricky.. These files have the potential to be harmless OR they could infect your computer to the max. These files are the main reason and source of all viruses starting and are smartly disabled by most email clients and services for sending and receiving as attachments. However disabled by most services, this doesn’t mean that if you manage to get one from them that you should open it.. Each of these files should be inspected thoroughly before using them. They are not only used to distribute viruses, they also distribute legit programs and are used within programs on your computer right at this moment, that is why it is so hard to determine what to do with them. If you know exactly what the file is, say you got it off a game CD you just bought from your local game shop, its fine to run, go ahead, run it 50 billion times for all I care. If you have downloaded one of these from the internet, make sure you know exactly what it is and that you have heard about this program before, even if you research the program on the net before you use it. Basically, just know what it is before you run it, If you know it’s not safe,

    There may be other variations of the extensions used above, be careful

    IE Needs to Die In a Hole – Before you even go to Google after a format, hit this site (Firefox web browser | Faster, more secure, & customizable) and download and install Firefox, the pinnacle of web browsing/security technology. If you use the internet for ANY reason you should have a copy of Firefox installed on your computer, It’s also free so why not =]. Firefox blocks popups, ads, harmful scripts and anything that can harm you whilst browsing the web (as long as you don’t download harmful files). Microsoft’s equivalent of a web browser (Internet Explorer (IE)) is basically like you putting your name on a list that says to hackers “Come and install viruses on me!”, ALL hackers know that Internet Explorer is the most unsecure web browser around and they have ways of finding out if you are using it, and when they do they can gain almost total control of your financial and personal information and your computer as easy as that. You should NEVER use Internet Explorer, except when it is the only web browser you have and you need to download Firefox. There ARE exceptions to this.. like websites that REQUIRE you to use internet explorer to view them.. I question these sites when I come across them and if they are legit, email the webmaster and ask them to make their website Firefox compatible.

    Get A Router.. – A Router is hard to explain.. So I’m only going to explain why you need one and what it physically is. A router is a piece of hardware about as large as a cars head unit, normally it sits on your desk or on top of your computer. What you need it for is to make sure hackers don’t get directly into your computer without your knowledge, what it does is stop anything from coming into your computer unless you tell it to or the router knows it is safe, and the router is smart, it won’t let stupid stuff in UNLESS you tell it to. Basically it sits between you and the internet and acts as a firewall, but it is much stronger of a firewall than any other you will find because Norton Firewall, or any other firewall let things get to your computer before they can stop it, a router does not, it stops and inspects BEFORE anything even touches your computer, and it does it in a matter of nanoseconds =] They start at about 50 bucks and can go up to anywhere near 200.. Just a cheapo one should be fine.

    Antivirus/Firewalls/Internet security suites – In my opinion, do not bother, if you follow the rules covered above you do not need them and they just waste system resources and slow the hell out of your computer. And if you do get a antivirus program or whatever, for GODS SAKE, do NOT get more than one, they will totally bugger your computer to the max.. just don’t do it ok..

    Giving It New Life

    This section will be a guide on when you need to format your computer and how to do it.. This is not completed yet and will be added as soon as it’s done =]

    Added by Moderator: In the meantime you may want to check out the Tweak3D 15 Minute Tune-up guide for XP to quickly restore some mojo to your computer.

    Do not copy or reproduce ANY part of this guide without my permission
  2. very interesting article, exactly what I was looking for.

    Edited my moderator - Sorry that link looks way too spammy for me.
  3. snipes040

    snipes040 New Member

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    hey thanks a lot this guide is perfect!
  4. kip59

    kip59 One of MSP's Sneaky Brits

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    yorkshire, england
    could you give me quick idea of the 'who's who' of routers.

    in my ignorance I thought a router was a bit of kit that allowed multiple wireless connx at home.

    How are the routers kept upto date with the latest 'anti baddie' software?