Internet Security

Security (or lack of) is becoming a major problem on the Internet. if you have a PC, be afraid, very afraid! If you have a Mac, be less afraid, but dont get complacent. It might be your turn next.

If you have a PC you need to be running at the very least :

1) A firewall. The built-in Windows XP firewall is the minimum needed.
2) Anti-virus software.
3) Anti-spyware .

Other things you might want to do :

1) Use Mozilla Firefox instead of Internet Explorer.
2) Use Mozilla Thunderbird instead of Outlook Express / Outlook.
3) Keep up to date with all Windows security.
4) Use a router with network address translation and built-in firewall.
5) Have passwords on all your account.
6) Make backups - often!

See here for a good site with lots of info about securing Windows XP. If you are running an older version of Windows similar procedures and software apply.

If you have a Mac you need to :

1) Be running Anti-virus software. Even if almost all PC viruses (barring word & excel macro viruses) dont effect you, at the very least so that you dont pass on any viruses to any PC's you correspond with. They tend to get upset.
2) Keep up to date with all Mac OS system updates, especially security updates.
3) Preferably be using a router with network address translation and built-in firewall.
4) Have a password on all your accounts.
5) Make regular backups.

If you do get compromised then sometimes the only solution is to reformat and start again with known clean copies of everything.