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Summary

Operating systems and firewalls can protect your PC's data, but after an intruder or automated attack gets past these defenses, you must fall back on virus scanning and encryption. It's somewhat simple for a virus to get by a firewall or the built-in security features of the operating system. If someone sends you a file over e-mail or on a floppy disk or allows you to download through the ICQ File option, a firewall can do nothing to stop an attack because you are allowing such connectivity.

Virus scanning is a must-have in today's environment. We can't say you shouldn't share files via the chat/messenger programs, open files in e-mail attachments, or download a file from your favorite Web site. Security shouldn't make it impractical for you to use the Internet. What you must do, however, is take the necessary precautions to enable you to have some comfort level in the functions you perform on the Internet. Your personal information is stored on your hard drives, and that data is valuable to you and to the attacker.


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