Click Here October 2003: Protect Your Computer

This was my first article for The Panther, published October 2003. It’s pretty boring stuff, but a start to my writing. This didn’t have the “Click Here” title yet.

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Protect Your Computer
By Lee C. Sonko

Every few months there is another front-page news article about a computer virus that has cost untold damages to people, companies, and the machines they work on. The truth is, the internet is a dangerous place. People are always trying to break into other people’s computers. Some of these break-ins are disgruntled employees bent on sabotage, some are kids seeing how much of a ruckus they can raise, and some are modern cat burglars trying to steal people’s credit cards. In any case, everyone here in the Valley wants to distance ourselves as much as possible from these shenanigans.

Here is an easy way to help keep the bad guys out of your computer. This isn’t a perfect fix, but this is something that will help a lot and you can do it yourself.

You should use Microsoft Windows Update every couple weeks. When you go to this web site and follow the easy instructions, it will put programs on your computer that will protect you from the most popular ways that people break in to computers.

Here’s what to do:
1) Connect to the internet the way you normally do.
2) Click on the Start Button and then find and click on the icon that reads “Windows Update”
3) If this is the first time you’re doing this, it might ask, “Do you want to install and run…” Click “Yes”.
4) Click on the link that says “Scan for Updates”
5) After it’s done scanning, click on “Review and install updates”
6) Click “Install Now”
7) It’ll ask you to accept a license agreement, click “Accept”.

Now you can sit back while it fetches the update. After this, your computer will be much better protected from those baddies on the internet. This doesn’t offer perfect protection, but it’s pretty good, it’s free and it’s easy to do.

For more protection, you might consider buying anti-virus software from a company like Symantec or McAfee. The Blaster worm affected over a million people’s computers just in one month, people like you and me! It’s important to practice safe computing.

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