Nescient IT Services • managing information technology for you
37 Victoria Gardens • Eastbourne • East Sussex • BN20 8NJ • (01323) 738 120
Proprietor: Paul Larkin
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Nescient IT Services - Security Guide

Security Guide - for the Internet User

Security Guide We should all be more aware about securing our computers. Every time you access unfamiliar websites or open emails there’s a chance you could be exposing yourself to threats. Some of these can be particularly harmful to your PC if you don’t have the right protection.

If you use the internet you need to know about these three guidelines:

  1. Use Windows® Update;
  2. Run and Maintain Security Software;
  3. Run and Maintain a Firewall.

Use Windows® Update.

This way to Windows® 7, Windows® Vista and Windows® XP are pretty good at keeping up to date by patching up any newly discovered security holes. However this is only if your Windows® software is configured well. Commonly people ignore notifications that there are new updates available, either assuming they are not important or that they will get around to it another time.

You can ensure that your version of Windows is updated by clicking on the Windows Update link. You can find the Windows Update Icon from your start button on most versions of Windows®. If you cannot find it there you can also find it from the "Tools" or "Safety" option on the Internet Explorer toolbar.

It is important to run Windows Update® regularly, at least once a month, and to follow the product updates link on the Microsoft® web site. As a general rule of thumb it is essential to download any critical updates. Any other updates are up to you.

Critical updates patch/fix major vulnerabilities in current Windows® operating systems and other Microsoft software. With a new PC the first update you download will take a while. Please note that some of the recommended updates are installation files. Whilst these might be quite small in themselves they often launch a much larger program - the most notable is Internet Explorer upgrades. The installation file is small but the program launcher, which will be run, is a comparitvely large program and will take a while to download

Nescient IT Services can help you get this right as part of our "Computer HealthCheck" Service.

Run and Maintain Security Software.

Run and Maintain Security SoftwareIf you do not have any security software it is important to install some as soon as possible. Sometimes the security software comes pre-installed when you buy a computer. In either case you will need to configure the software correctly and to scan all "at risk" files.

In addition you will need to ensure that the security definitions are kept up to date. This is a list of known threats which your security software can look for and should be updated regulalrly. It is not enough to have security software, you need to keep it up to date. Keeping the software current is, mostly, an automated process.

Most of the time security software provides for free security updates for at least a year. Beyond that you have the option of either upgrading your software or paying a subscription to continue to download updates.

Nescient IT Services offers a "Computer HealthCheck" and "Computer Security Check" service which will help you eradicate viruses and prevent virus attacks.

Run and Maintain a Firewall.

Run and Maintain a FirewallA firewall is a piece of software or hardware that analyses the traffic between your computer and the internet. In most cases it reduces many of the risks associated with being connected to the largest network in the world. Whilst you are connected to the internet your computer could fall prey to the interest of the prying eyes of a hacker. They will they have access to your data and could use your computer to hide their malicious activities.

If you have ever entered any personal information in to your computer then it could potentially still be somewhere in the PC. In a document, an email, a temporary file or hidden away in the bowels of Windows in a place that you would never think to look. A Hacker will know exactly where to look and will gather this information and use it as they see fit. Have you ever entered any of the items on the right into your computer?

A hacker will also be able to obtain your details to enable him/her to log onto your internet connection or email account in the same way as you do and use your account in any way they want.

We can help you protect yourself with our "Computer Security Check"

Unsure of doing any of this yourself?

Please call us or fill in our contact request form to make an appointment to show you how to configure your system.