Cell Phone Articles: Keeping
worms out of your home network!
No auntie Sookie, not earth worms, computer virus worms that
can get to you computer and slowly dig deep into your files
and eat them away. Put that eggnog down and I'll tell you
some more about these new worms.
This worm is a self-replicating (makes a copy of itself, aunt
sookie!) program that reproduces itself over a network. It
can be hidden in an email attachment from an unknown sender,
a movie download from a suspicious website, or an application
sent from someone you don't know. Once on your computer it
then can replace a single file, like a winsock.dll or many
files and send copies of itself along with email or newsgroup
messages that you can post.
The following are ways to keep these type of worms out of
a) Never, I said never (for emphasis) connect an unpatched,
non updated computer or other Internet related device to the
Internet. How do you update and patch a computer without connecting
to the Internet? Get a cd from Microsoft with the latest and
greatest patches and updates, then connect the device and
then check for updates while connected to make sure you have
b) Always, I said always (yes I am being redundant) use a
firewall between your network of computers and the Internet.
Even if your network of computers is 1 or 2 computers, it
is still a network and needs a firewall to protect it, really
protect it. A single computer connected to the Internet is
now part of a world wide network thru it's Internet connection
and is therefore vulnerable without protection. Get a firewall,
a real firewall.
c) Educate and train anyone who uses your computer(s) network.
Many times an infection is invited by careless users who download
infected email, visit infected sites, or bring infected machines
(laptop's, pda's) into a network from outside.
d) Patch and update, patch and update, patch and update (redundant,
oh yeah). Yes it's a pain, and it requires time to do and
verify that it's actually patched and updated. However it's
definitely simpler and cheaper than trying to fix an infestation,
or explain to everyone why the network is down or their computers
won't work because a worm is eating through everything they
have worked hard to save and protect.
e) Make sure up-to-date anti-virus software is on every machine,
everything connected to the Internet. Anti-virus packages
aid in protection and detection against worms.
f) Establish security rules for your network and educate everyone
who touches the network. They must be enforced, daily.
g) Frequently check your network for vulnerability. Visit
vulnerability website's, take advantage of free scanning tools
on the Internet to test your machines. New vulnerability and
new exploits are released constantly, and you can't protect
against what you have no idea what is coming your way.