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Evil-doers Try, Try Again
The recent reported attack on Microsoft's new Longhorn operating system and the worm that attacked computers at CNN, ABC News and other corporate entities underlines the need for adequate computer protection.
Longhorn: (1) a steer commonly found in Texas; (2) the new code name for Microsoft's new operating system.
Paranoia: (1) distrust: extreme and unreasonable suspicion of other people and their motives;
(2) the fear of using ANY Microsoft operating system.
Put the two together and you have what transpired a few weeks ago when rumors flew about some Austrian weenie that had developed a virus aimed at Microsoft's new version of Windows the day the company distributed its first beta version of the product. Also you have the paranoia that resulted when a computer worm infected systems at major corporations the weekend of Aug. 13.
Once the smoke cleared, it turned out that the Austrian's "virus" was actually aimed at code that wasn't included in the beta, but the fear was still there.
Now, a quick solution could involve wrapping your computer in protective material and never surfing the Internet again OR making sure your system is adequately protected against new and old strains of viruses, spyware and the infamous cookies we encounter every day.
Riding in on its white horse comes ZoneAlarm Internet Security Suite 6.0 from Check Point ($69.95 for a year of protection).
Of course the well-known free version of ZoneAlarm (which to my mind is one of the best Internet firewalls) is still available, but truthfully, for relief of the pangs of paranoia, it's worth the bucks to upgrade to the full product. Especially when you take into consideration the rise of identity theft.
Some of the key features include:
â€¢ A triple defense firewall that blocks hackers, makes your computer "invisible" to the outside world, intercepts spyware and protects your system from malware.
â€¢ Integrated anti-spyware and virus protection that constantly updates, scans and removes malicious code from your system.
â€¢ SmartDefense, which constantly updates your computer with new spyware and virus definitions.
â€¢ Protection from identity theft and online profiling.
â€¢ A pop-up blocker that stops those annoying pop-up ads.
â€¢ It will quarantine suspicious email attachments and automatically halts outbound messages that may contain viruses.
â€¢ It automatically blocks phishing and junk emails from entering your inbox.
â€¢ It protects instant messages so they can't be monitored.
â€¢ It automatically detects wireless networks and secures your PC from outside intruders.
â€¢ Identity Theft deterrent
Now, obviously this is aimed at those of us using current versions of Windows, but what happened a few weeks ago just underlines the fact that there is scum out there that would love to make our lives miserable, increasing the need for adequate protection.
Mike Berman can be reached by email at email@example.com or through his Web site at www.jocgeek.com.