[GUIDE] Protecting Windows XP from spyware/virii/adware/rootkits
Ok since i've seen quite a few topics of people who are having trouble with spyware, virii..etc i've decided to write a guide containing the best programs and ways to keep your (Win XP) computer from getting infected.
First off the basics
If your constantly downloading new things or going on *cough* questionable sites, your going to need a good antivirus.
I recommend AVG free addition http://free.grisoft.com/doc/2/lng/us/tpl/v5
To stop random things floating off the internet onto your computer you'll need a firewall, now you could use windows built in firewall but its not really that good.
I recomend Kerio personal firewall by Sunbelt Software http://www.sunbelt-software.com/Kerio.cfm
Its very good at blocking intrusions and isnt a big bloatware firewall like some others.
If you use things like limewire or other P2P programs you may end up with spyware or adware.
Here is a list of programs that will help you remove it:
Spybot search and destroy: http://www.safer-networking.org/en/download/
Windows Defender: http://www.microsoft.com/athome/secu...e/default.mspx
These programs SHOULD get rid of most spyware/adware, but its better just to not get it in the first place.
Rootkits are another type of infection that your computer can get and are alot harder to track down that spyware/adware.
Rootkit revealer is a program that can show you if you have a rootkit installed in your system, you have to read how to use it and how to remove the rootkit if you found one on the site, though it can return some false positives. http://www.sysinternals.com/Utilitie...tRevealer.html
Sophos rootkit detection and removal software is a product that has been released recently which will scan and tell you if you have a rootkit and then try and delete it for you.
To read more about rootkits go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rootkit
Now on to some other things that can help protect your system.
Your browser is something you will probably use the most of on your computer. A bad or not locked down enough browser will leave you open to spyware and virii.
Heres some things you can do to try and stop yourselves being infected from your browser.
-DON'T USE INTERNET EXPLORER or if you really must use it, lock down internet explorer so that unwanted active-x and active scripting will not run.
-If you must use Internet Explorer at least use Internet Explorer 7
Donwload from: HERE
-Heres a guide to locking it down its old but it should still work: http://sis.berkeley.edu/SIS/sis-trai...-lock-down.htm
-Use Firefox or Opera (Speaks for itself :tup:)
6.)The HOSTS file
The Hosts file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. This file is loaded into memory (cache) at startup, then Windows checks the Hosts file before it queries any DNS servers, which enables it to override addresses in the DNS. This prevents access to the listed sites by redirecting any connection attempts back to the local machine. Another feature of the HOSTS file is its ability to block other applications from connecting to the Internet, providing the entry exists.
It is located in C:\WINDOWS\system32\drive rs\etc it is one single file in there.
You can use a custom hosts file from this site http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm that will block bad sites that try to infect your computer and it will also block some of the ads floating around the net.
7.)Checking to see if you have open ports
Having ports open in your router is a BAD thing unless you specifically opened them yourself. To check to see if you have open ports ust this site https://www.grc.com/x/ne.dll?bh0bkyd2 (click on proceed).
Hopefully all your ports are either stealthed or closed, though it's better to have them stealthed.
Other tips that may be helpful:
Good firefox extensions for security:
Adblock plus-Not really for security but is helpful for getting rid of those annoying ads on the net https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1865/
Filterset G-To be used in conjunction with adblock plus. Updates the list of sites with ads to block every few days https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1136/
CustomizeGoogle-Allows you to get rid of the ads on google and to stop them from tracking your searching habits with their cookies, it also alows you to do alot more things to customise google. https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/743/
Mcafee Siteadviser-Warns you wether sites have content that can harm your computer.http://www.siteadvisor.com/download/ff.html
*Theres a script i recommend that routes all your searches from google msn and yahoo through a proxy called blackbox search http://www.nemik.net/blackboxsearch.user.js
-If your downloading anything off limewire etc.. check the size of it before you download it, a 4 minute long song isn't going to be 50 Kb now is it :icon_surp.
-Scan the files with an antivirus before using them.
-look at the names of the things your downloading to see if its actually the thing you want and not some other random thing.
-Use a secure P2P program such as emule http://www.emule-project.net/
-DON'T DOWNLOAD UNKNOWN .EXE FILES
-Use a bittorent client for your file sharing needs ;)
-Be careful if you feel like getting software for free, some cracks for programs like windowblinds and other commercial software can infect your computer. So next time you feel like pirating something that needs to be cracked, think, you could be getting infected.
-Also the serial/crack sites can also contain spyware/adware/virii. So try and keep away from them too..if you can ;)
Heres some good sites to read up on security:
http://www.alw.nih.gov/Security/security-www.html <--big list of sites but kinda old
And if you want theirs a podcast called security now that each week takls about security, it's really good and i recommend you listen to it if your interested.
http://www.grc.com/SecurityNow.htm#54 <--site with all episodes
http://www.twit.tv/SN <--main site
Last thing, you have to change the way you use the internet use it slighty more cautiously and you can easily prevent yourself from getting infected on the internet.
If i've forgotten anything or anyone wants to add something just reply and tell me and i'll add it. I hope this guide can help some people in making their computers more secure.:icon_bigg