Computer Security for The Fiction Author

Keep yourself self from computer baddies.

Protect Yourself from Viruses and Hackers

Buy an anti-virus program and keep it updated. Symantec's Norton Anti-virus is easy to use. McAfee VirusScan is also good, though I've not found it as easy to use as Norton. This is important, but, I'm sorry to say, it's also probably not enough. You need a firewall, too. Norton Internet Security is a good one. If you have a Windows-based computer you're at risk. If you have broadband service (a cable modem, DSL, etc.) then you need to be aware that these services have wide-open backdoors that invite viruses and trojan horse programs that can and do hijack computers.

The companies to whom you are paying good money for broadband service know it, and they don't do anything about it. In fact, many of them prohibit the installation of a firewall. Why? Because buried somewhere in your service agreement is language to the effect that your service provider may access your computer at will, and that's why they don't want you to install a firewall. It's as if a car company sold you a car on the condition that you agree never to lock your doors just in case they want to get in a take a ride. When I had a windows-based system and I tracked several attempted hacks into my computer back to IP addresses owned by ComCast. That almost certainly means that someone with a cable modem has been compromised. Please, for your own safety, install a firewall.

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