A Further Note On Protection

June 18, 2008 at 5:23 pm Leave a comment

First of all, I tend to expand this considerably, and even to be serious throughout.  At this point, protection isn’t a joke.  A recent experiment run by a university team found a botnet with millions of users with infected computers, all of whom were presumably unaware.  The first thing after internet access has to be installation of an anti-badware program.  I like that better than malware, mainly because “malware” gives the impression it’s always a sophisticated exploit.  “password” was the most commonly-used password on computer access until IT finally realized it.  (Very few systems will take it.  Don’t use it.)


Since access to information through our computers has expanded, the computer has come to play more and more of a role in our lives, yet most of us understand it (let alone the Internet) considerably less than our cars.  We’re unsure of the distinction between a worm and a virus.  *.cab files are something programmers talk about.  We hear of phishing attacks, don’t know what to do, and click on links anyway, whether in our e-mail from people we “know” or on web pages like MSN or Yahoo!


I’ve recently been most impressed with Norton.  I’m not impressed with McAfee and haven’t been for a long time.  There are free anti-badware suites out there (and the more sophisticated ones do things like file cleanup, defragmentation and a lot more)…with documentation that unfortunately has to be aimed at the more sophisticated user.  The more sophisticated user is the rarity.  Norton has both the easy setup and the support to back it up.  Symantec is the corporation behind Norton.  I was recently astonished at support for Norton Save & Restore, which is a backup solution.


I think I spent $19.95 on the product.  There was no expiration date (I can’t say whether that’s true of current versions because I haven’t yet checked).   The problem involved validation of a valid product (that had previously been validated–on a previous computer).   We kept getting errors on input of the code for it.  “We” meant I actually installed the software for remote control from Symantec and allowed a technician (who showed actual OS and product understanding) to try. 


As it happened, he and I couldn’t make it work.  In the meantime, it turned out I’d been hit by a Netsky virus (and I’m going to have a further note on protection momentarily) so I had to reinstall Windows, and such.  And they called back!  We got it installed with a functioning backup.  Interestingly enough, it matched the code we’d been trying all along, but that’s another story.


I agree with current analysts that for web-surfing we’re going to have a web-based OS, practically.  What I do know for right now is that at this time and point web-based backup makes actual sense.  Consider Norton 360.  And as far as price goes, consider what happens when something happens that you don’t understand and there is no backup.  Forums can be quite frustrating.


Because you will get hit.  You will lose a drive; almost undoubtedly you’ll get hit by a virus or worm or some other sort of badware.  The loss of information in a society where information has become the medium of value is the loss of “money” and other value indicators.  Think about it.  And I’ve actually advertised Symantec twice in this blog.  I’ve never done that except with free software.


Entry filed under: computers/tech. Tags: , , , , .

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