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  1. #1
    flaming tbag!


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    Protect Yourself on the Internet

    FREE AntiVirus Programs
    avast!
    AVG
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    Microsoft Security Essentials

    FREE Malware Detection/Removal Programs
    Malwarebytes

    Recommended Internet Browsers
    Mozilla Firefox
    Google Chrome
    Opera
    Safari

    Other
    RKill (stops processes for easier removal)

    Explanation of Terms
    In order to protect yourself from malicious programs, you should really become familiar with some of the virus-related terminology. You don't have to become an expert, but it's important that you are able to understand the basics.

    AntiVirus Software: These are programs that run in the background all the time. These are your first line of defense against viruses and other malicious scripts. An anti-virus program should be capable of preventing, detecting and removing malware. Generally speaking, AntiVirus software is most useful for the prevention of infection. These programs should prevent you from accessing known dangerous websites, block incoming (harmful) connections, and send any suspicious files to a 'safe' area where you can determine their purpose without allowing them access to your hard drive. While AntiVirus Software can certainly be intrusive at times, and might even slow down your computer's performance, it is absolutely necessary that you run one while you're on the internet. Many of these programs can be configured to best meet your needs.

    Malware Removal Software: These programs are NOT antivirus! Malware Removal Software will not protect your computer from acquiring a virus or malware. Malware Removal programs, such as Malwarebytes, are designed to detect and remove malware that already exists on your computer. (Paid versions of this program do offer realtime shields, however, it is still not AntiVirus) These programs are a second resort, should your antivirus fail to successfully remove malware from your computer. Sometimes these programs are more effective against spyware and malware.

    Virus: Using the term "Computer Virus" will generally cover all types of malicious programs. Trojans, worms, rootkits, adware, malware and spyware are usually clumped together under this term. (technically, the term Virus applies only to programs that are self-replicating) Computer Viruses, similar to living viruses, are programs, code or script that is designed to disrupt or destroy functions performed by your computer. These are spread over the internet in various ways, or through files transferred via external storage (flash drive, CD/DVD, etc).

    Malware/Spyware/Adware: Malware is very similar in definition to Computer Virus. But unlike the traditional computer virus, Malware is designed to exploit functions on your computer for a specific purpose. Most malware is created for the purpose of profit.

    The Basic Set-up
    In order to best protect yourself, you should be running AntiVirus software, and using a secure browser. For Windows users, I do not recommend Internet Explorer. Firefox is probably the best alternative, especially because of the security addons available. However, Chrome, Opera and Safari are also good alternatives. It is also wise to be running a firewall - Windows comes with its own software firewall - and if you are connected to a router, you are already behind one.

    What to Avoid - And How to Avoid It
    One of the most popular ways for viruses and malware to be distributed is through advertisements. Graphic banners and pop ups are notorious for this. The best way to avoid this problem is to run a browser or browser addon that will block advertising materials. Firefox and Chrome both have Adblock Plus, which will block almost all advertising. For Firefox, you can find it here. For Chrome, you can find it here.

    Aside from protection programs, it's essential that you understand how to handle pop-up advertisements - they are made to deceive you into inviting malware onto your computer. Whenever you encounter a pop-up window, it is extremely important that you never click inside the window. You should only close pop-ups using the "X" in the upper right (or the Red bubble on Mac), or by right-clicking on the window's tab in the taskbar and choosing "Close Window". Do not use any buttons inside of the pop-up window.

    Visual Examples:


    Along the same line as pop-ups, you need to be aware of a very popular scam. Sometimes, when you are browsing the web, you will receive a pop-up or alert notifying you that your computer is full of viruses. Often, they will say things like "Your antivirus has detected "insert number here" viruses on your computer. Click "accept/okay/remove/etc" button to remove." This trick depends on panic - please, if you ever receive a notification like this, I want you to remain calm, slow down, and think. Please think of how ridiculous this is - has your antivirus program ever performed a scan without your knowledge? If you've run one before, you know how intense they are, how much they slow down your computer, and how long they take. It's extremely unlikely that one could be running without your knowledge. I want you to also to recall what your antivirus looks like when it gives you notifications - it doesn't appear as an internet browser popup.. it doesn't appear as a simple notification window. Should you receive one of these scam notifications, you need to close it in the same manner I showed you above. DO NOT click on ANY buttons within the popup or notification. Clicking on any button there will absolutely download and install malware. Please become familiar with your Antivirus program and how it informs you of things.

    Another popular way to distribute malware and viruses is through email. This is not limited to attachments, either. You do not have to open an attachment to acquire a virus through email - please do not be deceived by this urban myth. NEVER open email from an address you do not recognize. It's a common trick for these emails to be sent from email address with generic names, such as "Mary" or "Steve" or "Tim". The hope is that you'll mistake these for people you know. But PLEASE think about it before opening emails of this nature. Try to recall how your the names of your friends usually appear in your email inbox. Even if you know a "Tim", does he know your email address? If so, does his name usually show up this way? Or does it show up as "Timmy" or "Tim Smith", etc? A good way to avoid being scammed is to add people to your address book with nicknames that are easily identifiable.

    Of course, you should also never open email attachments if you aren't 100% sure of what they are.

    The last method of distribution I'll discuss here is the infamous voluntary download. Quite a lot of us on this forum do a decent amount of downloading, so it's really important that we're cautious. The best advice I can offer to you in this area is to only download from trusted sources. While it's pretty safe to download from links provided on this forum, I definitely do not recommend clicking on any old link you find on the web. Make sure you run your Antivirus protection, and do full scans on a regular basis.

    When it comes to protecting yourself on the internet, it's best to remember.. keep a cool head. Remain calm, slow down, and think. Gut reactions are your worst enemy on the web.
    Last edited by fataltea; 07-28-2011 at 01:06 AM.

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  3. #2
    Yaoi Fan

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    Thank you for this detailed post, I've had to learn all of this through the hard way after multiple infections on my computer.

    Quote Originally Posted by fataltea View Post
    Another popular way to distribute malware and viruses is through email. This is not limited to attachments, either. You do not have to open an attachment to acquire a virus through email - please do not be deceived by this urban myth.
    Does this mean that simply reading an email will install malware/viruses onto your computer? Now I'm really paranoid about the spam emails I receive ...

  4. #3
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    I find an adblocker extremely useful to block malicious popups or ads.

    Also, love how you recommended every popular browser besides Internet Explorer. *shot*

  5. #4
    flaming tbag!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Maina View Post
    Does this mean that simply reading an email will install malware/viruses onto your computer? Now I'm really paranoid about the spam emails I receive ...
    Not in all cases, no. In most cases, you need to either click on a link within the email or open the attachment. But malware creators are getting smarter, and it has become possible for emails to do more damage. As far as spam emails - as long as you aren't opening/viewing them, you should be perfectly fine. If you're using an email client (Outlook, Lotus, etc), the preview window doesn't count. My advice - just don't open any email unless you know for sure that it isn't junk.

    Quote Originally Posted by DaemonDragon View Post
    I find an adblocker extremely useful to block malicious popups or ads.

    Also, love how you recommended every popular browser besides Internet Explorer. *shot*
    Ha, yes. Well, Internet Explorer is infamous for its glaringly obvious security holes (wide enough to fit a tank through). Personally, the few experiences I've had with viruses/malware happened while using IE. So, I would never in good conscience recommend it to anyone.


  6. #5
    scary momma set addict


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    for those that have Windows, Microsoft Security Essentials I have found to be quite good in removing viruses. Plus its free if you are running genuine Windows.

    Also if you have been infected but are having a hard time removing a virus or malware because it prevents you, RKill is good to stop the process so you can actually remove it.


  7. #6
    Yaoi Addict

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    are there also examples of phishing mails and such that will make your account/pasw unsafe for a lot of websites such as facebook, twitter and myspace?
    or should I attempt to make a guide on that on how to recognise them? ^^
    as I had someone come to me all freaked out and scared about a threatning mail from blizzard that refered towards some complete unknown website that had nothing to do with blizzard XD...

  8. #7
    Yaoi Lover

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    We don't get questions about scam emails often and most of them are filtered out through the email client themselves. Hotmail does it well enough.
    Of course sometimes you can be unsure if it is a scam or not but if you google whatever is in the email you can easily find out.
    Thirdly any game, forum, payment method, bank etc. will never ever ask you to email them with their password or visit a site to re enter your password and personal information. People should have learned that golden rule by now and if they are still confused should just get in contact with the game/company/bank/forum themselves and ask.
    Usually there is no need even to read those emails either, I don't really feel the need to make a guide there are plenty online and if a guide is made it can result in the following problem; posts like "omg I totally had this email!" or people actually quoting the messages including the link to malicious websites (yes I actually believe people will do this on this forum).
    Last edited by KarumA; 09-19-2011 at 04:24 PM.

  9. #8
    Yaoi Legend


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    Antivirus suggestions?

    I bought a brand new computer this year (about two-three months ago) and since the last one I had (for about 9 years) got a virus, and couldn't save it, I was wondering which antivirus would be best to get for this new computer. I am online almost all the time, I'm always downloading and uploading and I have it on almost all day. I have Norton, but it's about to expire next week, and I need an antivirus that can stop attacks even when I'm not physically sitting next to it (I leave it on a lot and this happened to me last year). I have sensitive information on this computer, and my parents would choke me if anything should happen to said information. I've had Norton for a long time, so is there any other out there I could buy? I know I made a similar question before a few months ago when I was having computer problems, but this is a new computer and I really want to know I'm going to be paying for something that will really protect my computer. I'm also looking for an antivirus for a Mac, and are there other antivirus that allow you to install it in more than one computer? (I think Norton has that option right? I've never had any use to install it in more than one computer before).

  10. #9
    Yaoi Legend

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    Eset smart security. Anything and everything you'll ever need. It's fully automatic and highly customizable. I've been using it for years and rely on it completely.

  11. #10
    Yaoi Legend


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    Quote Originally Posted by Schneider View Post
    Eset smart security. Anything and everything you'll ever need. It's fully automatic and highly customizable. I've been using it for years and rely on it completely.
    Oh wow, looked it up and the 'Removable Media Control prevents malware infection from USB flash drives, CDs and DVDs; enables blocking by device ID.' option got me! Totally what I need too~ For two years at such a good price too, that's better than Norton. I buy this online or do can I get it at a store?

 

 
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