Viruses

Viruses have been around for a great many years and despite the widespread use of anti-virus programs still cause problems.
Viruses, by definition are self replicating, they spread from one computer to another just as a cold virus will be passed from person to person
Viruses are written for malice or as a challenge. They aim to cause as much havoc as possible. The author of a virus, some of whom are children as young as 9 years old, can never hope to gain financially from their efforts. Their reward can only be sharing their success with their close friends.
The following points should keep you secure from viral attacks

    • Never use an Infected Computer.
    • Own & register reputable antivirus software.
    • Ensure antivirus program is scanning email.
    • Ensure virus data file is up to date. If it is 7 days old you are seriously at risk, two weeks old and you might as well not have any protection!
    • Open email attachments with care.

If you have not used your computer for a while, eg when returning from holiday, bring all your security measures up to date before accessing the Internet or checking your mail.
If you think you may be infected – STOP!
At the first sign of trouble press Ctrl+Alt+Del to stop your computer while you think what to do. Write down any messages displayed. Disconnect the phone line and remove any discs. Back-up key files, preferably from within DOS. If you have access to the Internet from another computer, search for help to identify the virus, it’s effect and how to remove it.If you have been infected, don’t be bashful. Help prevent further damage and the spread of the virus by informing everyone with whom you have been in contact. It is important to do this immediately and preferably by telephone!

Foistware

Foistware and other pieces of software or changes to the settings on your computer can meddle with your system. A reputable anti-spyware program (see above) will usually remove such unwanted items from your computer.
You should always be cautious about accepting any offer or installing new software on yur computer. Make sure you know what the implications are and that you only accept items from a trustworthy source