Safe Computing

I hear a lot about “safe computing,” but I rarely see a list of things that are relatively simple to remember and implement. Bruce Schneier has updated his list of PC security recommendations. Read the article for details, but the summary includes:

  • Turn the computer off when not using it
  • Keep your laptop with you at all times
  • Back up regularly
  • Don’t use Microsoft Windows if you have a choice
  • Install applications you need; delete others
  • Don’t use Internet Explorer as your browser
  • Be careful to whom and how you provide personal information
  • Use good passwords for important sites (i.e., banking)
  • Turn off HTML email
  • Use anti-virus and anti-spyware software
  • Use a firewall
  • Encrypt sensitive email messages

I like this list. Most of it is relatively easy to accomplish — even for librarians that are not very technically-oriented. Even if you are not able to implement all of ideas, the more you can implement, the safer you will be.

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