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In order to protect yourself, you need to know who and what the enemy is. Meet the five prime suspects and how to vanquish them.
Protecting your systems from spyware and virus infections means knowing know who and what the enemy is. Meet the five prime suspects and how to vanquish them.
- Viruses and worms: These are by far the most common network security threat. PREVENT THEM BY using up-to-date virus protection software and by training your office staff to never open an email attachment that they weren't expecting.
- Trojan horses: Usually disguised as something else (like a computer game or link to a video or search results page) a trojan horse downloads and installs "malware" on your computer that can be used to steal account information or passwords. PREVENT THIS BY not downloading freeware, blocking links embedded in emails, and restricting access to certain pre-approved websites.
- Phishing: This refers to emails that trick you into accessing an insecure website and typing in personal account information. PREVENT THIS BY educating yourself about the most common phishing scams. Use email filters to limit the number of phishing attacks that reach your inbox.
- Residual data: Stolen or sold laptops and computers pose one of the biggest threats for networks, as system passwords are often still on the hard drives and can be retrieved. PREVENT THIS BY encrypting sensitive data, clearing hard drives properly and keeping close track of mobile devices such as smartphones or memory sticks that are used near sensitive data.
- Shared computers/connections: Shared computers and unsecured WiFi access points are a lot like public bathrooms - they may appear clean, but are usually full of viruses. PREVENT problems by ensuring that employees don't log into important online accounts from a public computer or public hotspot.