TechSpot

How can I make my computer as safe as a Stealth Bomber?

By liquidfire
Feb 23, 2007
  1. First of all... I just want to give a big *TWO THUMBS UP* to TechSpot. I've used you guys a few times before and the responses have always been fast, friendly and supportive. These forums are truly a beautiful thing in this exponentially growing digital civilization. I seriously thank you for your generosity and your patience as I no longer let my computer ruin my day completely knowing you guys are still around for help. <3 to you all.

    Once again, I kneel to you experts and humbly ask for your help...

    My World of Warcraft account was hijacked out from under me, my myspace spams infected bulletins and programs like Ventrilo and Microsoft Word are experiencing errors, or windows no longer can locate them. I have a buddy on my AOL instant messanger list from college who's extremely smart with computers, but I don't think he respects the privacy as much as the thrill he gets from his affair with his computer.

    I have a lot of pictures, movies and music that I would like to keep as I have been collecting them for a long time. I'm worried that if I save them to CD blindly without scanning first, the files will carry the virii over into my reformatted computer.

    Question 1) Is there a recommended way to figure out which piece of media (picture/movie/song) has a virii embedded in it? How would you recommend I backup these media files, or is the only true way to keep a computer clean... to keep it empty?

    Question 2) After I have backed up any files, or cried long enough about the fact that I'm about to lose them all, are there any specific steps I should take before/durring reformatting all my hard drives to ensure nothing dangerous remains?

    Question 3) My computer is on a network with my 3 roommates who download and have 0 protection on thier computers. The pop-ups they have on thier computer tell me that they are infected as well. Is there a way to safeguard my computer from other computers on my network? "Our" network is password protected from the neighbors, but if my roommates are infected and the network is comprimized... I would really like a last defense ability for my personal privacy.

    Question 4) I read the sticky on Anti-Virus Protection software and the ones you recommended and noticed that a few people recommended using multiple AV software. I also used to use a program called BlackIce that allowed me to monitor all traffic on my computer. Unfortunately, I cannot shell out a ton of money for programs at this time, but I am very interested in how to "TOTAL LOCKDOWN" a computer in this day and age. I'm wondering if you guys have any ideas to progressively lock down my computer as paychecks come in... Stage 1) XXXX Antivirus and YYYY Firewall / Stage 2) ZZZZ firewall and OOOO email scanner... etc.

    Question 5) Any other extra information that you think would be useful like rotating passwords every so often, or specific reading material on the matter would be appreciated. The internet is growing really fast and getting more and more dangerous, I do not want to be left behind and clueless for an easy kill.

    I have read a lot of posts on these forums that were enlightening, but I am really looking for that straight shot complete protection method as I am not comfurtable putting all the different thread information together and Securing my system based on my intuition. Thank you in advance to anyone that helps me and I appologise for any spelling errors, I do not have a functioning program with spell check. :(
     
  2. tomrca

    tomrca TS Rookie Posts: 1,051

  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,476   +329

    I assume you own the ISP access and the router -- this is a key element to your security.

    This is a P2P application and you're opening ports into your system to play.
    If you're serious about becoming immune, STOP using all P2P -- life is tough and
    you have to make tough decisions. For me, my accounting and personal files
    are far more precious than playing games -- heck, if that's all I needed a computer
    for, I wouldn't expend the money, but that's my choice :)
    yep; this and youtube are hives of problems. Your choices create results, so
    make better choices :)
    Norton Utilities has WinDoctor which is quite good at correcting registry errors.
    Also try Spybot Search and Destroy, it corrects many errors
    ALL IM is an exposure. In fact Corporate America forbits IM between
    employees and the external world -- just for this reason.
    AV scan is your best hope; scan and delete any contaminations;
    then backup to CD or another system
    After a format, there's nothing left so forget this issue
    Control file shares on your system and they will not be able to contaminate you.
    Go to CP->Admin Tools->Comp Management->System Tools->Shares
    DELETE IPC$ and print$
    Anything else is your choice, but make sure you have a strong password
    (User Accounts->Guest->change password)
    If this account is DISABLED, you'll need to activate it first, chg pwd, and then
    disable it again
    Best yet; disable all shares and in your firewall, disable print/file sharing
    Doable!
    1. place a router between the modem and all systems, giving you NAT support
    2. get a real firewall on ALL systems, but especially YOURS!
      see this post
    3. Get Spywareblaster (it's free) and Spybot S&D (also free)
    4. Get Anti-Malware 7.5 for AV and email scanning
    5. Yes you can have more than one AV program, just make sure only ONE
      is allowed to Autoscan. AV is like a tool box, each tool is better than another
      when used correctly. NO single AV catches / fixes everything so get a few tools for tool box :)
     
  4. Condor

    Condor TS Maniac Posts: 461

    i can feel the loves already =D

    ps. get a really reliable firewall (as for me I'm currently using Ez Armor anti virus)
    i feel safe with it open. I got like 4789845 intrusion log on my Firewall, it keep pilling up as we speak. ^^v
     
  5. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 9,431

    So the quality of a firewall is indicated by the amount of rubbish it logs?
    I don't think so.

    Those logs show either a misconfiguration of your firewall or extreme hostility of your network, nothing more.
     
  6. Condor

    Condor TS Maniac Posts: 461

    those are not rubbish, alot are but the most important thing is not getting your vital info out, just like the OP who got his Wow account hijacked + his email account. Thats what a good firewall do, it intercepts outbound info getting out.

    even through i have no idea why there are so many inbound coming in, might be my cable (sharing data line)?
     
  7. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 9,431

    Well, how do you intend to log in to your e-mail account if you don't send out your username and password? :p
     
  8. Condor

    Condor TS Maniac Posts: 461

    Premium eMail = $9.95 a month
    myspace = 20 hours of investments
    WoW account = $500

    Blocked a malicious program that send out my personal account info via keylogger with my Ez Armor Firewall = priceless.
     
  9. Boogityboo04

    Boogityboo04 TS Rookie Posts: 351

    Not getting a keylogger in the first place = even better ;)
     
  10. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,476   +329

    Oh how precious :giddy:
     
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