Protecting your computer from unwanted guests

My brother and I in Holland, in a big ass clog, keeping out feet protected from bad...things.

My brother and I in Holland, in a big ass clog, keeping out feet protected from bad...things.

My brother recently contacted me about an incident involving a tech support scam. Luckily, the scam was caught before anything serious happened and one good thing came out of the episode, which leads me to this post and the next few posts. I will be going over some of the tools that can be used to keep unwanted guests out of a computer. All the tools I will be talking about are free, but will require some configuration and thinking.

Tools

Here are the four tools I recommend for avoiding those nasty Internet Transmittal  Diseases (ITD):

  • Microsoft Security Essentials - Anti-virus
  • Secunia Personal Software Inspector (PSI) - Software patching
  • Microsoft Enhance Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) - Computer hardening
  • Mozilla Firefox with NoScript plugin - Safe browsing
  • BONUS: Turn on click-to-play in browsers

I want go in-depth on Microsoft Security Essentials and turning on click-to-play in browsers. For Security Essentials, go to the download page, download, and install. Simple as that. There aren't many settings for the anti-virus program and that's a good thing. Anti-virus is largely mocked within the infosec community, because it's easy to circumvent, and that includes the $40-60 big name anti-virus companies of the world. Still, it has saved my bacon a time or two and worth installing, especially if it's free like Security Essentials.

I covered click-to-play in my last post and provided a link to a pretty good article that goes through how to turn on click-to-play in all the browsers. No need to reinvent the wheel, so here's the link again. Click-to-play is easy to turn on and easy to get used to and helps with computer performance.

If any of the posts are unclear are you have a questions, please leave a comment or contact me directly.