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Sunday, January 02, 2005

Thanks to ABCNews and Down with Spyware


I know it has been a lengthy bit of time since my last posting. I need to add a calendar reminder to my outlook I think. Anyway, I would first like to thank ABCNews for recognizing "Bloggers" (whatever that means) as their person of the year. It is a major achievement for ABCNews to recognize an internet group with such an honor.

Next I would like to expand on my latest experiences with Spyware. There is a fundamental flaw with peoples perception of safe internet usage and wise decisions. I would like to go over a few problems with the way we "surf the 'net." First we make certain assumptions about what is bad and what is good on the internet. One of the major problems is the assumption that when we are prompted to install a piece of software or need to click yes to approve a dialog box to make a certain web site work, that the software is safe and necessary for the site to work.

It is occasionally true that a web site may need a some software to work properly. Moreso, websites the are offering "FREE" stuff are trying to abuse your trust. Free search toolbars are the number one culprit for being and allowing spyware to enter your computers. Other problem software are free games and other add-ons that are pushed you internet surfers. So what can you do to thwrart these invaders of your computer? There are 3 main tools that you can put on your computer to remove, block and protect against spyware.

First, always have an up-to-date Antivirus program installed and working. This is an active defense to viruses and spyware. I suggest you look at getting one of the following:
Norton Antivirus
Mcafee Antivirus
Trend-Micro Antivirus

Second, install and regularly run a spyware removal tool. There are two really good ones and it is suggested that you update and run both weekly. Here are the links:

Third, and finally STOP!! using Microsoft Internet Explorer. It has a long and poor history with security vulnerabilities that not only can let spyware in but also let hackers take over your whole computer. You can get a really good browser from the folks at the Mozilla foundation, they took over the old Netscape browser code.

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