Batten down the hatches! Hackers, spammers and thieves (oh my!) are after you! The mere act of turning on an Internet-connected computer can put you, your family, and your personal finances at risk by exposing you to viruses, scam artists, hackers, identity thieves, and spammers. How do you fight back? Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware and Viruses is your first line of defense.
Clear, easy-to-understand definitions of viruses, spyware, and hackers will help you understand what you're up against everytime you go online. Then, you'll learn about other threats, such as identity theft, phishing, and other potential dangers you'll face in your everyday computing. Find out how to search out and destroy spyware, malware and other viscious programs that could potentially harm your computer. Then find out how to lock out hackers, spammers, and theives for good.
We'll tell you how to immediately cut the risk of being attacked in half — in less than 10 minutes! Protect your bank accounts, digital photos, digital music collection, masters thesis, and everything you hold near and dear on your computer with the help of the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware and Viruses.
How This Book Is Organized.
Special Elements Used in this Book.
Reader Competition...of Sorts.
I. SECURITY BASICS: SOME VERY REAL THREATS.
1. Viruses: Attack of the Malicious Programs.
What Is a Computer Virus?
What Is It?
Who Triggers a Computer Virus?
How Does It Spread?
What Damage Can It Do?
Viruses: As Many Kinds As Sniffles in Kindergarten
File Infector Viruses
Worms: Network-Savvy Viruses
Trojan Horses: Hey Helen, the Achaeans Left Us a Present!
Virus Hoaxes: Fake Viruses that Scare the Heck Out of You
Who Creates Computer Viruses?
What Not to Do!
When Viruses Attack!
Disconnect As Soon As Possible
Virus Infection Found! How to Cleanse Your System
My Antivirus Program Won't Update!
Now I Have Your Attention...
Antivirus Checkup: 10-Minute Tactics
Install Windows Security Updates
Update Your Virus Signatures
Fortify Your Computer: Strong Virus Defense in a Few Hours
Install or Upgrade an Antivirus Program
Scan Your Computer for Viruses
Install Service Pack 2 and Enable Virus Protection
No Worm in My Apple?
Is That a Virus in Your Pocket?
2. Spyware: Overrun by Advertisers, Hijackers, and Opportunists.
What Is Spyware?
What Does Spyware Do and Why Is It Bad?
How Does Spyware Sneak onto My Computer?
Types of Spyware: Snoops, Adware, Cookies, and More
Spyware: I Spy with My Little App
Adware: Attack of the Pop-ups
Snoopware: I Wanna Know What You're Up To!
Browser Hijackers: Turn This Browser Around, We're Going to Cuba.com
Key Loggers: Snooping on Your Typing Skills
Dialers: Dial In, Dial Out, Dial Often
Trojan Horses: Pretty Ponies with Deadly Insides
Cookies: Does My Oreo Have a Tape Recorder in It?
Who Is at Risk?
How Do I Know If I Have Spyware?
Defend Yourself Against Spyware
Spyware Countermeasures: 10-Minute Tactics
Ban All Spies: Strong Spyware Defense in an Afternoon
Run a Full System Scan
Install a Second Anti-spyware Program
Inoculate Your System
Spyware Infection Found! How to Scrub Your System
How to Fix a Browser Hijack
Decimate the Little Suckers with CWShredder
Microsoft Mimics HijackThis: System Explorers
3. Hackers: There's a Man in My Machine.
What Is a Hacker?
Who Are the Hackers?
What Damage Can Hackers Do?
Targets of a Hack Attack
Hacker Motivation: I Think Therefore I Hack
Tools of the Trade: Pass Me a Trojan Horse, Would You?
Firewall: Shut Out the Hackers
Software Firewalls: Programs That Stop Hackers
Windows Firewall: Built-in Defense
Third-Party Software Firewalls
Recommended Firewall Freebies
Easy Defense with a NAT Firewall
Stateful Inspection: The Meticulous Traffic Cop
How to Detect a Hacker Attack
How to Fix a Hacker Attack
Steps You Can Take Immediately After Being Hacked
Batten down the Hatches-10-Minute Tactics
Turn on Windows Firewall
Activate the Firewall on a Mac OS X System
Wall off the World-Install a Better Firewall in an Afternoon
Install a Two-way Software Firewall
Install a Hardware Firewall
4. Identity Thieves and Phishers: Protect Your Good Name and Bank Account.
What Is Identity Theft?
Techniques Thieves Use to Steal Your Identity
How They Become You: Identity Theft Techniques
Preventative Measures: How to Not Become a Victim
Signs You're a Victim
What to Do If You're an Identity Theft Victim
What Is Phishing?
How Does Phishing Work?
Email Address Spoofing
Web Address Spoofing
What Is Pharming?
What Damage Can Be Done By Phishing?
Who Is at Risk? Everyone!
Don't Get Phished: 10-Minute Tactics to Stay Off the Hook
They Won't Ask, You Don't Tell
Use Caution and Cut and Paste
Install an Anti-spam Filter
Block Phishing Sites with NetCraft
Carry a Big Spoofstick
Keep Your Antivirus and Anti-Spyware Programs Up-to-Date
Keep Your Computer Software Up-to-Date
Ensure You Are You: Take an Afternoon to Protect Your Identity
Check Your Credit Reports
Shred It Before You Chuck It
Read Your Statements
5. Spam: Unwanted Email from Hell.
What Is Spam?
Why Does Spam Keep Coming?
Why Doesn't Someone Stop the Spammers?
How Do Spammers Get My Email Address?
Commercial Email Lists
Newsgroups, Discussion Forums, and Interactive Websites
Contests and Other Free Offerings
The Damage Spam Can Do
Reduce the Flow-10-Minute Tactics to Reduce Spam
Don't Post Your Email Address on the Web
Webmasters Shouldn't Use mailto
Turn Off Image Display in Email Programs
Turn On Junk Mail Filtering
Kill More Spam-In an Afternoon
Install an Anti-spam Program
6. Wireless Network Snoops: Lock Down Your Wi-Fi Network.
What Is a Wireless Home Network?
What Damage Can a Wireless Network Snoop Dish Out?
Who Are the Snoopers?
Your Wi-Fi Network Is Full of Holes!
How to Access Your Router Set-up
First Line of Defense: Secure Your Wi-Fi Network
Turn On WEP
Turn On WPA
MAC Address Filtering: Keep Out the Scottish
Detecting a Visit from a Wireless Snoop
I'm Under Attack! What to Do If You Discover a Wireless Network Snoop
Turn Off Wireless Access
Activate Security Measures
Assess the Damage
Wireless Security Workup: Quick Tactics and Some That Take a Little More Time
10-Minute Tactic: Change the Router's User ID and Password
10-Minute Tactic: Change Your Default SSID
10-Minute Tactic: Turn On the Windows Firewall
10-Minute Tactic: Turn Off UpnP
10-Minute Tactic: Turn Off Your Router When Not in Use
Time Intensive Tactic: Be Careful with File Sharing
7. Privacy Snoops: Cover Your Tracks and Your Reputation.
Why Your Privacy Is Important
What You Leave Behind on Your Computer
Movies and Audio Players
Who Are the Privacy Snoops?
The Consequences of Being Caught
Emergency Tactics-I Am Being Snooped On!
How to Create PC Privacy
Obscure Your Trail-In About 10 Minutes
Microsoft Internet Explorer
Cover Your Tracks-In an Afternoon
Clean Multimedia Players
Windows Media Player 10
Real Player 10
Protect Your Email
Turn Off Saved Sent Items
Empty Deleted Items Folder
Don't Leave Email on the Server
Scrub Microsoft Office
Deleted Files Are Not Gone
Turn Off Chat Logs
Clean Restore Points
II. STRATEGIES FOR SAFE AND SECURE COMPUTING.
8. Let's Smash-Proof Windows: Tweak Windows XP Nice and Tight.
If Windows XP Is a Dike, You're a Little Dutch Boy
Step 1: Trash Unnecessary Programs
Step 2: Install Firefox
Step 3: Install Antivirus Software and Scan for Viruses
Step 4: Install Anti-Spyware Software and Scan for Spyware
Step 5: Block Out the Bad Guys and Install a Firewall
Step 6: Install and Configure Microsoft Updates and Service Pack 2
Step 7: Install Netcraft's Anti-Phishing Toolbar
Step 8: Protect Yourself from Spam
Step 9: Managing Your File Sharing Security
9. Starting from the Beginning: Wiping a Hard Drive and Rebuilding from the Ground Up.
Light the Fuse and Stand Back
Let's Get Started
XP Installation CD or System Recovery Disk
Windows SP2: The Mother of All Service Packs
Collect Your Drivers
Installation CDs for Your Programs
Internet Service Software and Settings
Step 1: Download Drivers and Software You Need for the Re-install
Got a Recovery CD? That's Good News!
Retail Copy of Windows XP? There's Some Work to Do
Step 2: Back Up!
IE Favorites and Cookies
Pictures, Music, and Videos
Microsoft Office 2003 Settings
Windows Media Player
Other Odds and Ends
Step 3: Pull the Plug on the Network
Step 4: Wipe Away Windows
Using a System Recovery CD
Using a Windows XP Install CD
Step 5: Re-install Windows
Step 6: Re-install Your Drivers
Step 7: Install Protection Against Malware
Install an Antivirus Program
Install an Anti-spyware Program
Install a Firewall
Step 8a: Install Windows XP Service Pack 2 (from CD)
Step 8b: Install SP2 from the Internet
Step 9: Configure Your Security Settings
Step 10: Install Firefox
Step 11: Configure Your Networking
Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
Step 12: Update Windows with All Recent Security Patches
Step 13: Update All of Your Security Programs and Security Signatures
Step 14: Activate Windows
Step 15: Re-install Your Programs
Step 16: Other Things You Can Do
10. Ongoing Maintenance: Fend Off Future Threats!
Note to Self: Keep Computer Secure
Daily Routines: Walk the Dog, Feed the Kids, and Secure the Computer
Update Your Antivirus and Anti-Spyware Signatures
Update AVG Signatures
Update Microsoft AntiSpyware
Update Spybot Search & Destroy
Weekly Routines: How to Never Be Bored on Saturday Morning
Scan for Viruses and Spyware
Check for Firefox Updates
Monthly Routines: Clean the Garage, Trim the Hedge, and Update Windows
Inspect Other Computers
Router Firmware Updates
Patch Microsoft Office
Bathe Once a Year Whether You Need It and Reformat and Re-install, Too
Wipe Your Hard Drive and Re-install Windows
III. TOOLS FOR MAINTENANCE AND PROTECTION.
11. Selecting Software: Steals, Deals, and Software Duds.
Security Software: Nothing in Life Is Free, Except Software
Payware: Software You Pay Hard-Earned Cash For
Freeware: Don't Pay a Cent Software
Weirdware: When It's Not Payware or Freeware
Gimpware: Free Software, but Not All the Bits Work
Trialware: It's Free, Until It's Not
Shareware: I Trust You to Pay Me
What Should I Pay for My Security Toolbox?
Choosing the Right Security Software
12. Tools of the Trade: Security Products You Should Own.
Which Security Software Is Right for You?