October 16, 2004

Protecting against hackers

What are hackers?

Hackers are people who attempt to gain unauthorised access to computers and networks. Hackers gaining access to your computer could potentially edit or remove your files, or install malicious programs. However, hackers are mainly interested in corporate networks where the challenge is bigger and the rewards are greater.

How can I block hackers?

You can block hackers by using a firewall program on your computer. Firewalls can also improve the general security of your computer by preventing malicious programs from being downloaded, and not allowing websites to monitor your surfing activities.

Firewalls are typically included with internet security packages. ZoneLabs' ZoneAlarm is a powerful and highly customisable firewall. If you are using Windows XP you can use its built-in firewall. For the best internet security you should install Service Pack 2 for Windows XP, as well as regularly updating Windows. Once installed, Service Pack 2 will automatically activate Windows Firewall and improve the security of Internet Explorer. Service Pack 2 is free to download or a CD can be ordered from Microsoft. To download the service pack, go to Windows Update on Microsoft's website by clicking on the following link:

Windows Update

Before you install Service Pack 2, you should check that your computer is not running any programs which are incompatable with it. Visit Microsoft's website for a list of incompatable programs:

Incompatable programs

For more information about dealing with compatablility problems visit:

More Information

Don't forget to keep checking for security updates for Windows and all your security software.

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