Are you practicing safe web surfing? Probably not, most people don’t. Many ‘think’ they are safe. ”I have virus filters and spam filters, and I don’t go to websites I don’t know.”, paraphrases the response I get from most people. I hope you don’t consider a bug screen over an open window as contributing to your home security. Bug screens keep bugs out of your house, not crooks!. And a bug screen doesn’t stop the mosquitoes from bitting when you’re outside. Viruses and spam can be used to steal your identity or personal information, but they are not the only threats to your cybersecurity.
The single largest cybersecurity threat is DOS. Not the very old operating system that is still at the heart of Windows. DOS, Deficit Operator Syndrome. Computer users behaving badly. Sorry, but I have never found any fix, patch, or work around for this issue. Best just to keep your distance and hope it isn’t contagious.
The second largest, is Internet Explorer, Microsoft’s web browser. This you can’t fix, but you can replace. And it’s not just Internet Explorer (IE), but any program that uses / accesses IE’s libraries for rendering web content. This would included: Outlook, Outlook Express, and Windows Messenger (aka MSN Messenger, aka Windows Live Messenger).
The solution is to stop using IE and programs that utilize IE libraries. There are numerous other web browsers: Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Safari, SeaMonkey, etc…. Just don’t switch to one that uses IE as it’s core, like Avant, Bento, Enigma, Maxthon, Realplayer, MSN Explorer. These are effectively re-skinned versions of IE. I often use multiple browsers simultaneous (Don’t ask why, that’s a whole other post!), but Firefox tends to always be one that is open.
Switch to Firefox (any other browser, that doesn’t use IE to render web content). Sometime in the near future I’ll write part 2. Were I will explain how to make Firefox ALOT more secure then it comes standard.