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Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware & Viruses

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Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware & Viruses


  • Sorry, this book is no longer in print.
Not for Sale


  • Copyright 2006
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
  • Pages: 384
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-7897-3459-1
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-7897-3459-4

Batten down the hatches! Hackers, spammers and thieves (oh my!) are after you! The mere act of turning on an Internet-connected computer can put you, your family, and your personal finances at risk by exposing you to viruses, scam artists, hackers, identity thieves, and spammers. How do you fight back? Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware and Viruses is your first line of defense.

Clear, easy-to-understand definitions of viruses, spyware, and hackers will help you understand what you're up against everytime you go online. Then, you'll learn about other threats, such as identity theft, phishing, and other potential dangers you'll face in your everyday computing. Find out how to search out and destroy spyware, malware and other viscious programs that could potentially harm your computer. Then find out how to lock out hackers, spammers, and theives for good.

We'll tell you how to immediately cut the risk of being attacked in half — in less than 10 minutes! Protect your bank accounts, digital photos, digital music collection, masters thesis, and everything you hold near and dear on your computer with the help of the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Security, Spam, Spyware and Viruses.

Sample Content

Online Sample Chapters

Hackers: There's a Man in My Machine

How and Why Hackers Want to Get Inside Your Machine

Table of Contents


How This Book Is Organized.

Special Elements Used in this Book.

Reader Competition...of Sorts.


1. Viruses: Attack of the Malicious Programs.

    What Is a Computer Virus?

      What Is It?

      Who Triggers a Computer Virus?

      How Does It Spread?

      What Damage Can It Do?

    Viruses: As Many Kinds As Sniffles in Kindergarten

      Macro Viruses

      Memory-Resident Viruses

      File Infector Viruses

      Boot Viruses

      Multi-Partite Viruses

      Worms: Network-Savvy Viruses

      Trojan Horses: Hey Helen, the Achaeans Left Us a Present!

      Virus Hoaxes: Fake Viruses that Scare the Heck Out of You

    Who Creates Computer Viruses?

    What Not to Do!

    When Viruses Attack!

      Disconnect As Soon As Possible

      Virus Infection Found! How to Cleanse Your System

      My Antivirus Program Won't Update!

    Now I Have Your Attention...

    Antivirus Checkup: 10-Minute Tactics

      Install Windows Security Updates

      Update Your Virus Signatures

    Fortify Your Computer: Strong Virus Defense in a Few Hours

      Install or Upgrade an Antivirus Program

      Scan Your Computer for Viruses

      Install Service Pack 2 and Enable Virus Protection

    No Worm in My Apple?

    Is That a Virus in Your Pocket?

2. Spyware: Overrun by Advertisers, Hijackers, and Opportunists.

    What Is Spyware?

    What Does Spyware Do and Why Is It Bad?

    How Does Spyware Sneak onto My Computer?

    Types of Spyware: Snoops, Adware, Cookies, and More

      Spyware: I Spy with My Little App

      Adware: Attack of the Pop-ups

      Snoopware: I Wanna Know What You're Up To!

      Browser Hijackers: Turn This Browser Around, We're Going to Cuba.com

      Key Loggers: Snooping on Your Typing Skills

      Dialers: Dial In, Dial Out, Dial Often

      Trojan Horses: Pretty Ponies with Deadly Insides

      Cookies: Does My Oreo Have a Tape Recorder in It?

    Who Is at Risk?

    How Do I Know If I Have Spyware?

    Defend Yourself Against Spyware

      Spyware Countermeasures: 10-Minute Tactics

    Ban All Spies: Strong Spyware Defense in an Afternoon

      Run a Full System Scan

      Install a Second Anti-spyware Program

      Inoculate Your System

      Use Firefox

      Clean Cookies

      Spyware Infection Found! How to Scrub Your System

      How to Fix a Browser Hijack

      Decimate the Little Suckers with CWShredder

      Microsoft Mimics HijackThis: System Explorers

3. Hackers: There's a Man in My Machine.

    What Is a Hacker?

    Who Are the Hackers?

    What Damage Can Hackers Do?

    Targets of a Hack Attack

      Corporate Networks

      Web Servers

      Personal Computers

    Hacker Motivation: I Think Therefore I Hack

    Tools of the Trade: Pass Me a Trojan Horse, Would You?

    Firewall: Shut Out the Hackers

    Software Firewalls: Programs That Stop Hackers

      Windows Firewall: Built-in Defense

      Third-Party Software Firewalls

      Recommended Firewall Freebies

      Hardware Firewalls

      Easy Defense with a NAT Firewall

      Stateful Inspection: The Meticulous Traffic Cop

    How to Detect a Hacker Attack

    How to Fix a Hacker Attack

      Steps You Can Take Immediately After Being Hacked

    Batten down the Hatches-10-Minute Tactics

      Turn on Windows Firewall

      Activate the Firewall on a Mac OS X System

    Wall off the World-Install a Better Firewall in an Afternoon

      Install a Two-way Software Firewall

      Install a Hardware Firewall

4. Identity Thieves and Phishers: Protect Your Good Name and Bank Account.

    What Is Identity Theft?

      Techniques Thieves Use to Steal Your Identity

      How They Become You: Identity Theft Techniques

      Preventative Measures: How to Not Become a Victim

      Signs You're a Victim

      What to Do If You're an Identity Theft Victim

    What Is Phishing?

    How Does Phishing Work?

      Email Address Spoofing

      Link Spoofing

      Web Address Spoofing

    What Is Pharming?

    What Damage Can Be Done By Phishing?

    Who Is at Risk? Everyone!

    Don't Get Phished: 10-Minute Tactics to Stay Off the Hook

      They Won't Ask, You Don't Tell

      Use Caution and Cut and Paste

      Communicate Securely

      Install an Anti-spam Filter

      Block Phishing Sites with NetCraft

      Carry a Big Spoofstick

      Keep Your Antivirus and Anti-Spyware Programs Up-to-Date

      Keep Your Computer Software Up-to-Date

    Ensure You Are You: Take an Afternoon to Protect Your Identity

      Check Your Credit Reports

      Shred It Before You Chuck It

      Read Your Statements

5. Spam: Unwanted Email from Hell.

    What Is Spam?

    Why Does Spam Keep Coming?

    Why Doesn't Someone Stop the Spammers?

    How Do Spammers Get My Email Address?

      Website Harvesting

      Dictionary Spamming

      Commercial Email Lists

      Newsgroups, Discussion Forums, and Interactive Websites

      Contests and Other Free Offerings

      Email Forwarding

    The Damage Spam Can Do

    Reduce the Flow-10-Minute Tactics to Reduce Spam

      Don't Respond

      Don't Post Your Email Address on the Web

      Webmasters Shouldn't Use mailto

      Turn Off Image Display in Email Programs

      Turn On Junk Mail Filtering

    Kill More Spam-In an Afternoon

      Install an Anti-spam Program

      Fight Back!

6. Wireless Network Snoops: Lock Down Your Wi-Fi Network.

    What Is a Wireless Home Network?

    What Damage Can a Wireless Network Snoop Dish Out?

    Who Are the Snoopers?


      Bandwidth Bandits

      Wireless Hackers

    Your Wi-Fi Network Is Full of Holes!

      How to Access Your Router Set-up

    First Line of Defense: Secure Your Wi-Fi Network

      Turn On WEP

      Turn On WPA

      MAC Address Filtering: Keep Out the Scottish

    Detecting a Visit from a Wireless Snoop

    I'm Under Attack! What to Do If You Discover a Wireless Network Snoop

      Turn Off Wireless Access

      Activate Security Measures

      Assess the Damage

    Wireless Security Workup: Quick Tactics and Some That Take a Little More Time

      10-Minute Tactic: Change the Router's User ID and Password

      10-Minute Tactic: Change Your Default SSID

      10-Minute Tactic: Turn On the Windows Firewall

      10-Minute Tactic: Turn Off UpnP

      10-Minute Tactic: Turn Off Your Router When Not in Use

      Time Intensive Tactic: Be Careful with File Sharing

7. Privacy Snoops: Cover Your Tracks and Your Reputation.

    Why Your Privacy Is Important

    What You Leave Behind on Your Computer

      Web Browser


      Movies and Audio Players


      Chat Programs

    Who Are the Privacy Snoops?

    The Consequences of Being Caught

    Emergency Tactics-I Am Being Snooped On!


      Limited Users

      Guest Accounts

      How to Create PC Privacy

    Obscure Your Trail-In About 10 Minutes

      Microsoft Internet Explorer

      Mozilla Firefox

    Cover Your Tracks-In an Afternoon

    Clean Multimedia Players

      Windows Media Player 10

      Real Player 10

      Protect Your Email

      Turn Off Saved Sent Items

      Empty Deleted Items Folder

      Don't Leave Email on the Server

      Wash Windows

      Scrub Microsoft Office

      Deleted Files Are Not Gone

      Turn Off Chat Logs

      Clean Restore Points


8. Let's Smash-Proof Windows: Tweak Windows XP Nice and Tight.

    If Windows XP Is a Dike, You're a Little Dutch Boy

      Step 1: Trash Unnecessary Programs

      Step 2: Install Firefox

      Step 3: Install Antivirus Software and Scan for Viruses

      Step 4: Install Anti-Spyware Software and Scan for Spyware

      Step 5: Block Out the Bad Guys and Install a Firewall

      Step 6: Install and Configure Microsoft Updates and Service Pack 2

      Step 7: Install Netcraft's Anti-Phishing Toolbar

      Step 8: Protect Yourself from Spam

      Step 9: Managing Your File Sharing Security

9. Starting from the Beginning: Wiping a Hard Drive and Rebuilding from the Ground Up.

    Light the Fuse and Stand Back

    Let's Get Started

      XP Installation CD or System Recovery Disk

      Windows SP2: The Mother of All Service Packs

      Collect Your Drivers

      Installation CDs for Your Programs

      Internet Service Software and Settings

      Security Programs

    Step 1: Download Drivers and Software You Need for the Re-install

      Got a Recovery CD? That's Good News!

      Retail Copy of Windows XP? There's Some Work to Do

    Step 2: Back Up!


      Outlook Express

      My Documents

      IE Favorites and Cookies

      Firefox Favorites

      Saved Games

      Pictures, Music, and Videos

      Microsoft Office 2003 Settings

      Windows Media Player

      Other Odds and Ends

    Step 3: Pull the Plug on the Network

    Step 4: Wipe Away Windows

      Using a System Recovery CD

      Using a Windows XP Install CD

    Step 5: Re-install Windows

    Step 6: Re-install Your Drivers

    Step 7: Install Protection Against Malware

      Install an Antivirus Program

      Install an Anti-spyware Program

      Install a Firewall

    Step 8a: Install Windows XP Service Pack 2 (from CD)

    Step 8b: Install SP2 from the Internet

    Step 9: Configure Your Security Settings

    Step 10: Install Firefox

    Step 11: Configure Your Networking

      Home Network

      Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)

      Cable Internet


    Step 12: Update Windows with All Recent Security Patches

    Step 13: Update All of Your Security Programs and Security Signatures

    Step 14: Activate Windows

    Step 15: Re-install Your Programs

    Step 16: Other Things You Can Do

10. Ongoing Maintenance: Fend Off Future Threats!

    Note to Self: Keep Computer Secure

    Daily Routines: Walk the Dog, Feed the Kids, and Secure the Computer

      Update Your Antivirus and Anti-Spyware Signatures

      Update AVG Signatures

      Update Microsoft AntiSpyware

      Update Spybot Search & Destroy

    Weekly Routines: How to Never Be Bored on Saturday Morning

      Scan for Viruses and Spyware

      Check for Firefox Updates

    Monthly Routines: Clean the Garage, Trim the Hedge, and Update Windows

      Windows Updates

      Inspect Other Computers

      Router Firmware Updates

      Patch Microsoft Office

      Software Updates

    Bathe Once a Year Whether You Need It and Reformat and Re-install, Too

      Wipe Your Hard Drive and Re-install Windows


11. Selecting Software: Steals, Deals, and Software Duds.

    Security Software: Nothing in Life Is Free, Except Software

      Payware: Software You Pay Hard-Earned Cash For

      Freeware: Don't Pay a Cent Software

    Weirdware: When It's Not Payware or Freeware

      Gimpware: Free Software, but Not All the Bits Work

      Trialware: It's Free, Until It's Not

      Shareware: I Trust You to Pay Me

    What Should I Pay for My Security Toolbox?

    Choosing the Right Security Software





12. Tools of the Trade: Security Products You Should Own.

    Which Security Software Is Right for You?

    Antivirus Programs









A. Glossary.



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