Don't Play with Fire!

Would you let a stranger bring a fire into your living room? Of course not, but that is just what computer users are doing when they cruise the Internet without a good Firewall.

What is a Firewall?
The Internet is on fire with dangerous and destructive people actively seeking to burn you and your PC! Hackers use powerful software to scan thousands of PCs a day. They are scanning for open "doors" into your PC. When they find one they bring the fire right into your PC and you get burned.

In today's PC many programs use the Internet. You may have thirty or more "programs" capable of sending and receiving data over the Internet. Often these programs are found to have "vulnerabilities," open doors that allow a hacker to break into the program and take over your PC!

For the home user a firewall is software that erects a fireproof wall between your computer and the Internet. A firewall only allows approved traffic to penetrate the wall. A good firewall doesn't allow unknown or unapproved programs to speak to the Internet or be spoken to. When a hacker scans your PC all doors are closed. The idea is that he will move on to another easier target and leave your PC alone.

Note: You should regularly check for updates to your firewall software. As hackers find new ways to sneak onto your PC the firewall makers update their products to counter them.

Quick Tip-Bit: I recommend ZoneAlarm® free version by ZoneLabs®. ZoneAlarm is free for individual use. They want to sell you one of their fine Suite or "Pro" versions but they give away the basic firewall. ZoneAlarm has been the highest rated firewall for the last three years by many PC experts. I would use the default settings. If you have not used a firewall before, it will change your Internet experience. You will be surprised at just how many programs access the Internet and how many times your PC is scanned! ZoneAlarm can be found at: http://www.zonelabs.com/store/content/catalog/products/sku_list_za.jsp

Give me a call if you have questions or want help installing ZoneAlarm®.

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