Computers 'n Stuff: PC security: Firewalling, virus protection and adware protection for free.

I here share the resolutions for my Linux problems so they might safe somebody some time.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005 parmanent link to this post

PC security: Firewalling, virus protection and adware protection for free.

Today you need to secure your PC when you're connected to the internet. Here I'll post a collection of software you can use for free which will provide the nessecary security. I think you'll need (i) a firewall (ii) a virus scanner (iii) a trojan scanner (iv) and last not least a spyware scanner.

First you should start by setting up a firewall. This will secure your PC from direct attacks from the internet like portscan. You could use the windows firewall, but I prefer using Zone Alarm. This is a free personal Firewall wich listens on all ports of your PC and asks you to permit outgoing or incoming traffic based on the programs which asks for access. This makes this firewall pretty easy to configure since you don't have to mess with ports. Additionally bacause of the logging capability you get an overview of the traffic on your PC. By the way, make sure that windows file and print server are not associated with the tcp/ip protocoll of the network device you established the connection to the internet. Zone Alarm will provide you with some firewall capabilities. If you want to go 1 step further you should use a router as firewall which supports NAT (network adress translation) or ip-masqureading. This technology is supposed to be very secure since you're PC is invisible from the internet. The firewall should moreover not reply to ICMP service requests like finger or ping because that way the hacker probably won't even notice that your online.

Next I would suggest you install a virus scanner. The best scanner I know which is free for personal use it AntiVir. This software will includes free updates of the virus definitions. In addition to scanning capabilities the software comes with an virusguard running in deamon mode controlling all files accessed (read or write) during a session for putative virus infections. In addition he can detect some trojans.

next step would be to install a trojan scanner. The only software for free I found so far is a-squared. After installation you have to register before you can use it. After this you can scan your complete harddrive and updates of trojan signatures are free. Trojan background guard is disabeled in freeware mode though.

Last I would install an anti spyware tool. I prefer Spybot S&D. For my feeling it has the most features and offers most comprehensive protection. Best of all, its absolutely free.

If you use Windows-XP you could furthermor disable administrator mode for the account you surf the internet with. This limits access to crucial files like registry for malicious software and provide additional security.

Additinally I would stop to use outlook and Internet Explorer since these pieces of software are vulnerable and are often attacked by hackers. If you use for example firefox, thunderbird or the mozilla suite you have less risk beeing attacked, since this software is more secure for the time beeing.

So this is the secury software I would suggest to make you surfing safer. I you have a question just post a comment and I'll update this post if I can help.


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