IT security is now a critical part of computer usage, especially in the advent of the worldwide web. With new security threats appearing daily, it's only natural for IT experts to develop ten fundamental guidelines that will help many an average computer user to avoid the common pitfalls of modern-day computing.
1.Get an Anti-Virus and Regularly Update It
Anti-viruses are your foremost line of defense against viruses and other types of malware. Updating your anti-virus is a must because new viruses come out of the Internet on an almost everyday basis.
2.Acquire an Anti-Spyware Tool: Anti-spyware services can be obtained via standalone programs like Lavasoft's Ad Aware or as a bundle to a whole IT security suite like the ZoneAlarm Pro Firewall package.
3.Keep Your Programs Updated: Hackers are forever looking for ways to infiltrate networks or systems via applications connected directly to the Internet. Ergo, getting the latest patches and fixes is only par for the course.
4.Do Not Download Unknown Files: Do not get files or install programs without knowing where they came from first. Be very careful of what you download from the Internet.
5.Do Not Open Unsolicited Emails: Email messages and attachments have become popular mediums that hackers use to spread their trojans, spyware, and botnets.
6.Create Complex Passwords and Change Them Regularly: Don't use birthdays or "123456" as your passwords. Make hard-to-guess ones and modify them from time to time.
7.Utilize File Sharing Cautiously: File sharing services and applications are among the many channels that cyber terrorists exploit in order to spread chaos and mayhem across the Information Superhighway.
8.Run Services as Needed: Running too many network services (FTP, IIS, UPNP, and so on) at once will leave your machine vulnerable to all sorts of hacker attacks and machinations.
9.Install a Firewall: A firewall program is the best way for the average user to protect his PC even when he's online and open to all sorts of virtual assaults. It filters out unauthorized and dangerous traffic from entering your system.
10.Make Regular Backups: The complete deletion of your files and programs because you were forced to reformat your compromised, malfunctioning, or virus-infected hard disk can be very devastating. Regular backup is the best way to prepare for such a circumstance.