Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Protecting Your Computer from Attack

OK, so we're starting from scratch here.  You've got a new machine connected to the Internet and the machine vendor already has installed an anti-virus programme.  Of course that's a subtle attempt to sell you on an upgrade.  You might have anywhere between a month and a year to decide what to do.  

If you are a low volume user, and the things on your computer don't include important business files.  It's quite likely you can install a free anti-virus programme.  The recommended programme tends to change over time, but at this moment for home use, AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition 8.5.406, is being recommended.  AVG do sell an upgrade version at a very similar price to other vendors, about US$40.00 a year.  "AVG Free Edition is the well-known antivirus protection tool.  AVG Free is available free of charge to home users for the life of the product."

Perhaps the most common Anti-Virus software I've seen is Symantic Software's Norton. The current version is Norton AntiVirus 2009, available for a 15 day free trial and then US$40.00 a year.  There is also Norton Internet Security at the slightly dearer price of US$60.00 per year.

If you feel you need a strong upgraded product, Kaspersky Internet Security 2010, from Kaspersky Labs, is recommended.  This has a price tag of US$50.00.  There is a slimmed down Antivirus version for US40.00.  

For many years I've been a user of Trend Micro's Antivirus software.  Currently I'm running Trend Micro Internet Security 2010, which is for sale at US$50.00 a year but I brought a two year deal for US$80.00.  The version I use has Antivirus protection, and web site protection and safeguards against exposing certain sensitive data online.  There is a cheaper Antivirus only version for US$40.00 per year.  My version upgrades itself about three times a day. I've never had a problem since installing Trend Micro.

Trend Micro also have a product called "Housecall" that will check your computer for viruses and malware online.  I've used it several times to sort out a problem for a friend.  

Make your choice.  It's your responsibility to make sure that your computer in not infected by a spam-bot or some other form of malware.  Of course the possible loss of sensitive data about you or your passwords or your banking ID, should also concern you.  Any of these programme's should give you a trouble free experience.  I'm a heavy user and I've no hesitation in paying for the service I enjoy.  Simply choose the programme you want, click on the download button, and save it to your hard-drive.  It's best to have a folder called "downloads" for this purpose.  

Once the programme is downloaded click on it and it should install itself.  You'll need to allow the programme to check all your existing files, a process that can go on in the background, but may take several hours.  You won't need to pay for the programme until the trial period expires.  

John Stephen Veitch
The Network Ambassador
Open Future Limited - You may comment privately to John S Veitch using this form.

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