What? Did you even remember that there is a Spam folder? If you’re anything like me, the answer is probably no, but that doesn’t mean that this update is not important. If nothing else, let this article serve as a reminder that your Spam folder is not to be ignored. Take a few minutes to review and test it out.
Archive for the ‘Viruses’ Category
An increasing trend in malware is the “fake anti-virus” program. There are hundreds of names for these programs, but the story is always the same. You are essentially locked out of your computer by a program that promises to help you remove….. itself. Unsuspecting PC users are forced to fork over $50 or more to simply regain control of their computer.
Possibly the most frustrating part of these malware programs is that there are tools out there to help you remove them IF you could gain enough control of your PC to install and run them. Unfortunately, you have no control. Whether you are tricked by one of these “fake anti-virus programs” or your real anti-virus program simply lets one get by, you are going to need some help. Luckily, the folks at Avast have developed a FREE Rescue CD that can be used to scan your system and remove these pesky programs with ease. (more…)
Unemployment and financial desperation have struck our country and for many, crime might be the only way to put food on the table. The local news, relatives and friends will tell you to protect yourself by keeping your doors locked, watching your wallet/purse and paying attention to your surroundings. This is all sound advice, but it is also the thinking of 15 years ago, before the internet. Today, criminals have gotten smarter and now it is time for you to do the same.
Spyware. Malware. Viruses. Trojans. The list goes on and on. There are as many terms for harmful threats to your computer as there are computers. It’s unfortunate that we live in a time where so many people strive to tear down our advancement and entertainment. As a result, some live in fear and limit their online lives to very simplistic activities, like checking email and playing simple games. Others brave the deep waters of the unknown and simply take a chance on their computer’s safety. The smaller, more advanced crowd spends countless hours preparing and protecting their system to create a digital Fort Knox so that they can breathe easily while surfing the web. No matter which category you fall into, you will at some point encounter one of these threats. Are you prepared for that day?
The JumpstartMyPC.com Tools page has been unchanged as of late, with the exception of updates to existing applications. Although we research a great number of programs and ideas, we rarely find the gems that are easy to use, effective and FREE. When we do find something that matches these criteria, we test it before adding it to our toolbox and make sure that we would indeed use it ourselves. Today, we have updated our Portable Applications section with the introduction of a new, portable tool called SUPERAntiSpyware Portable Scanner.
JumpstartMyPC.com was created to help PC users get the most out of their computer and there are few products that have demonstrated this concept as much as avast! Free Antivirus. Since the first day the company was drawn out on a bar napkin (isn’t that how they all start) we envisioned a Tools page with avast! positioned firmly at the top. Today, that top spot just got a little brighter, as avast! has served up a shiny, fresh-off-the-production-line model, with version 5.0 of their amazing, FREE software.
Normally, I would prepare an article like this and hold on to it for a few days before posting it to our blog, but my faith in the makers of the avast! product (which they have earned without compensating me in any way) tells me that I can safely cover and promote this update. Why, because I have used the avast! product on countless computers, for myself and others, and have never had a complaint. The software has always been easy to install, easy to use and VERY effective. Of course, all of this could be said about other antivirus softwares, but those other applications are not FREE! How can you beat FREE and functional?
Protecting your computer from security threats, like viruses and malware, has long been a necessary evil for PC users. Threats are plentiful, and so are the costs associated with anti-virus programs and updates. Unfortunately, both seem to also be on the rise.
Most new computers come with a trial version of Norton or McAfee (anti-virus programs), which expires within the first year of use. For most users, the notification that the trial period is about to expire surfaces far too quickly and forces them into some quick decision making. Uneducated and uninformed, the average user feels they should continue to use these programs after the trial ends. There are two major problems with this mode of thinking:
We have stressed the importance of anti-virus protection for your PC since the first days of our blog. Even before there was a blog or a JumpstartMyPC.com I talked with friends and family about securing their computer via a program like avast! Now, I want to bring a new message to all of those who take the time to read our articles. “Know your anti-virus program and be careful what you click.”
Friday I got a call from a client whose computer was suffering from a virus attack and, of course, he needed his PC right away. I am not complaining or mocking him, as I know how important it is to have a functional, virus free computer at all times. I arrived on the scene to investigate and found one of the worst attacks I had ever seen. The computer could be powered up, but that was about it. A few seconds after booting up, the pop ups began. Window after window of warnings and seemingly helpful “virus removal” options filled the screen. The problem was, many of these “helpful” windows were actually the virus.
Long ago, I heard a compelling reason to password protect your router. Until then, I had always left mine unprotected and really didn’t want to go through the hassle of setting up a password and worrying about getting people connected when I DID want them to use it. But the day I heard that I could be held responsible for the surfing habits of another person, simply because they were using my internet connection, I went home and immediately enabled the security on my wireless router.
I can’t remember who told me this or why it came up, but in a recent discussion I heard a story of several people who were arrested for surfing child pornography sites and, in time, it turned out they had nothing to do with it. Apparently, someone else had been using their wireless signal (without their knowledge I would suspect) to connect to the internet and view the sites in question. I have yet to find an article proving this point exactly, but at the same time I am a bit nervous about typing the words “child” and “pornography” into Google. Today, an article about a very similar scenario crossed my path.
A shocking title for the article, but I really wanted to get your attention. It’s for your own good.
Microsoft recently launched the free Security Essentials package for Windows. Much like avast! Home Edition (our favorite) or AVG Free, the software package aims at providing anti-virus and anti-spyware protection for the home PC user for FREE! Apparently, they were also doing a little research about the users that installed the software and what was found on the PCs it was installed on.
According to an interview with Amy Barzdukas (general manager, Internet Explorer and consumer security at Microsoft) “well over 30% of people who are downloading it are requiring a fair amount of cleaning.” In the full article One-Third of Security Essentials users infected : Microsoft (found on itwire.com), Amy notes the details of their findings, but that 30% quote was enough to grab my attention and I hope it will do the same for you.