The_Modern_Wild_West by paydot888

VIEWS: 9 PAGES: 2

									The Modern Wild West

Word Count:
916

Summary:
They may think they are the Yosemite Sam‟s of the modern world, but you
are the New Sheriff in town! Marauders of today do not come moseying up
bow-legged into your path with a six-gun slung across their hip telling
you to, "Stick „em up, or else." Instead, today‟s modern outlaws can be
in and out of your life without a trace of you knowing what has happened.


Keywords:
Internet safety, Firewalls, Anti-spyware, Web browsers


Article Body:
They may think they are the Yosemite Sam‟s of the modern world, but you
are the New Sheriff in town! Marauders of today do not come moseying up
bow-legged into your path with a six-gun slung across their hip telling
you to, "Stick „em up, or else." Instead, today‟s modern outlaws can be
in and out of your life without a trace of you knowing what has happened.
With the explosive popularity of the Internet, untold numbers of citizens
are blindly allowing computer data miners to collect sensitive
information from their computers. This “mined” information can be used
for many purposes, but the main issue here is that the information is
stolen from people who quite literally hand it over with a smile. A
random click here on a harmless looking popup or web link can mean the
difference between a safe surfing experience, and one that results in a
“Stagecoach Robbery”.

Average Internet surfers just starting out have no idea if it‟s normal
for them to win a thousand dollars with a single click or not, much less
if it‟s normal for them to have to scroll through many sites to get to
the one they first clicked on. Therein lays the Holy Grail for the modern
day marauders.

Hijacking is one of the most serious threats to internet safety. These
rascally scoundrels will set programs and lay in wait, watching your
every move of your computer. They see that you innocently want to search
for something and suddenly, you are taken to one of their websites. They
hijacked your computer and made you go where they wanted you to go! Once
at their site which are often fake search engines and portal sites, you
begin to get pop-ups, they tag your computer with modern-day invisible
post-it note reminders. Once these “reminder” files are embedded, they
function like little thieving robots, storing and sending information on
all the searches, websites, links that YOU and your family have clicked
on in the past three months. In addition to that, there have now been
hidden programs installed on your computer that generate a myriad of pop-
up ads. The crook has planted his hijack, and only has to sit back and
watch his booty collect.
You and your entire family are exposed and at risk. Your banking info,
your credit card statements, even your cell phone are all potential
threats just because you just simply didn‟t know you were making yourself
an attractive target. Hijacking is one of the most alarmingly popular
means of marauding of today, but take heart, there are ways to combat
this problem and impose your own form of Martial Law to protect your
family.

The first line of defense is a good firewall. Firewalls come in many
different versions and are made by many companies. There are software
firewalls, and hardware based ones as well, but they all serve a similar
purpose. The purpose of a firewall is like a gate: nothing comes in or
goes out through your Internet connection without you knowing about it.
Firewalls, however, are only as good as the persons using them. Knowledge
is power, and you should familiarize yourself with the normal functions
and files that it takes to run them. When you know the real deal,
counterfeit files or intruders are many times more likely to be
recognized and apprehended. When this happens, you will not be finding
yourself in uncharted territory and will be able to click "Access Denied"
with confidence.
Secondly, the market has come out with some really good anti-hijacking
software that are specially designed to prevent your browser from being
overtaken and can eventually save you from a totally dominated and
bombarded computer. Software such as this is not used as a replacement
for a firewall or antiviral defense. In fact, today, a myriad of software
solutions should be used to keep your system totally clean and under your
control.

Lastly, a good anti-spyware program is a good means at combating the
problem of hijacking. It will guard against the editing of your registry
which would command the start up of malware as well as prevent any
information from being broadcast over the net or emailed back to the
user. Some anti-spy programs will also guard against hijacking, but if
you are a victim of hijacking, they will also prevent the usual serious
repercussions of the hijack. Remember, prevention is key. It is much
easier to start with a clean system, implement a firewall, antiviral
software, anti-spyware, and anti-hijack software than it is to
painstakingly scrub clean an infected system. After all, it‟s a lot
easier to return to a mouth that has fed you, than to find another hand.

The last thing you should remember is that ownership is of utmost
importance. If one chooses to be likened unto an ostrich and chooses to
not educate themselves on the dangers that lurk about in this modern Wild
West, that puts them at a severe disadvantage. Nobody is too old or too
young to be aware of the dangers of this world, and it is just vital to
change with the times and adapt. Familiarize yourself with firewalls and
anti-hijacking software, get to know how your computer works, and you
will be well on your way towards making sure you are safe from marauders!

There may well be some rootin-tootin, tech-savvy individuals out there,
but you are the one with the badge in this horse town.

								
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