Monica's Safe Computing

Please respect each site's usage terms and READ directions on the sites CAREFULLY.

last updated: December 8, 2010.

I decided to add this page of links because folks gradually notice the security issues after they have already had problems. Most repair shops charge per hour to remove viruses, worms, etc. Why not save your money for new computer equipment and software? I know many people who swore "never happen to me".... sure it did- at the worst possible time, too. Take the time now to keep your software up to date and safe. After all, it is YOUR computer. You are gambling against Murphy's Law!


General Security

Keep current on security issues! Current folks and prepared folks are rarely surprised victims! News outlets will warn of major security holes as they are discovered.


Microsoft Patches


Browser Software and Email Readers

Take the time to understand the security settings and keep the software up to date! Family and friends can be just as likely to send nasty bugs as strangers. Sometimes, more so if they don't take the time to keep current on patches, updates, definitions, etc. Few programs arrive with defaults set up for the security-minded folks. For those using non Microsoft programs, you will still NEED those Microsoft browser updates to plug the security holes. Just read carefully! I use Opera or another Mozilla browser unless confronted with a page requiring IE. (I am only a return visitor to one of those pages.) I still make sure the IE, Outlook, and Messenger holes are plugged by getting and installing those patches!

Just spotted these two browser setting checkers in the September 2003 issue of PC World.



Many experts are now recommending that all users should be behind a firewall, instead of just those with "always on" connections to the net. Consider it an extra layer of protection that is there if you need it.


Identity Theft

All children are trained early on to not reveal their name, school, town, etc. . Yet adults are willing to give out the same information and more to strangers on the Internet- drivers license, social security, bank account, credit card, and so on.



Yes, we all get it, whether you pasted your email addy on a webpage, in a guestbook, in a newsgroup, etc. Sometimes, the spammers get lucky and guess your email addy. Sometimes, they use tricks like images pulled from their servers that show when you open their email, or hidden click buttons to validate a possible email.

If you are a U.S. citizen, forward your junk email, with full headers showing, to the FTC at They actually request junk mail of all types!


Spy Ware

Sometimes there are things worse than a worm or virus..... these can slip in with or without email and sometimes you even installed them yourselves! Read up on the articles for more information about these malicious hidden programs. These two programs are free and will accept donations but they give you control over what is removed and protected against on your computer.


Urban Legends/Hoaxes

The world and your family and friends will thank you for not forwarding the oldest and newest Internet hoaxes and legends!



It's such a simple concept, and so few actually do it! Use a protection program, keep it updated and set it for maximum protection.


Do It Yourself Security 101:

  1. Check for new virus definitions, patches, updates for all software at least WEEKLY. If your Internet connection is always on, set the antivirus software to get its updates automatically.
  2. Carefully consider which Windows updates you must install for maximum security.
  3. Install those updates immediately.
  4. Run virus check software at least weekly, if not more often.
  5. Set virus checker to scan all incoming and outgoing mail automatically, as well as any instant messenger sessions.
  6. Do not open attachments unless you are expecting them from that exact sender.
  7. Make sure your browser and email programs are set to the highest security settings (no stationery, no html, no javascript, no active-x).
  8. Set up your own email program filters/rules to sort known email into folders. Sort remaining email into a "spam" folder to check at your leisure later.
  9. Do not assume only strangers will send you viruses, worms, trojans, spyware. Anyone not current on security settings can send those out if they are infected, including you.

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