The Danger from Hacking
What is a Hacker?
Hacker – A person who attempts to remotely access your PC across the Internet. To achieve this they normally use a Virus Program to compromise your computer first. There are computers on the Internet constantly searching for PC’s they can compromise with a virus.
Typically if you connect a PC to Broadband Internet without Virus Protection or a Firewall (more about that later) it will be compromised, within 15 Minutes, by a remote control virus.
Hackers have many techniques to try and gain access to a computer system and even the most sophiscated military installations are sometime compromised by hackers.
For the home user, hacking is a more casual affair, normally no one is specifically targeting your computer to access it.
To the home PC, the hacker is more like the opportunist burglar, if you leave the door unlocked with goods in view they may well nip in and steal them.
You can prevent the opportunist hacker from accessing your computer across the internet, by installing a barrier between you and him, in computer terms this is called a firewall.
See firewalls to find out more
2) Anti-Virus Software
Part of the arsenal the hacker uses to take control of a PC, is a virus which loads a program onto your computer enabling them to control your PC remotely. To stop viruses damaging or compromising your PC, you need a good Anti-Virus Program which is kept up to date daily, if possible.
See Anti-Virus Programs for more information
3) Keep you Operating System Updated
From time to time the publisher of your computers operating system e.g. Microsoft for Windows, identifies a flaw in the code which can be exploited by a hacker. They then publish an update to the operating system which you should install. If you use a modern operating system like Windows XP a pop-up will appear in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen saying “Updates are Available”. It is recommended that you install these updates, because it may block a hole which otherwise a hacker may get through.