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Thread: Home Computer Firewall S/W Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Manhattan Beach, CA

    Question Home Computer Firewall S/W Question

    Since this <b>is</b> the OT Forum, I guess I don't need to put OT in the Subject line anymore.

    Our home computer got spammed/hacked, who knows? So, the Chief (wife) went out and bought Symantic Firewall software. She <i>heard</i> that if you have a firewall the spammer/hacker will have a harder time getting into your computer. She got this firewall s/w because we already have Norton Anti-virus and she wanted to use stuff from the same company.

    Now, we don't have a network at home just the one computer, on dial-up. Don't have firewall hardware. Since I do all my surfing from work I have the luxury of every anti this or that hardware and software known to man to protect our Network.

    I'm a bit skeptical that this software will help us reduce the possibility of someone getting into our stuff. What happens is, if Chief is creating a Word document, all of a sudden the computer devils take over and start typing right over the open doc. Don't know how this happens - but she's got the software now, Man, so watch out!

    Will this firewall s/w do us any good? It already has a disclaimer on the box saying that it cannot protect against stuff coming in from Hot Mail or Yahoo. Of course, older daughter has Yahoo Mail and younger daughter has a Hot Mail account...

    Are we doomed? I need help and advise from one of the 500 IT folks here at SMC.
    Dave Anderson, SoCal - Work Safely!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Oak Harbor, Whidbey Island, WA
    If you havn't opened the package yet you can download Zonealarm for free it works great I've used it for about 2 years & have had no hackers or problems since. You can get free up dates too. I found a site can't remember where but they check to see if they can find you on the internet. They came back & said while they knew I was there they couldn't find me. I figure if they can't find me they can't hack me.

    C:\Program Files\Zone Labs\ZoneAlarm\Help\ZoneAlarm_Help.htm

    Also check this out
    I usually find it much easier to be wrong once in while than to try to be perfect.

    My web page has a pop up. It is a free site, just close the pop up on the right side of the screen

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Collin County Texas

    Regarding Hotmail

    Dave, AFAIK Hotmail does an automatic virus scan of all the mail it holds in an account. I know nothing about Yahoo, but it seems that they would be foolish not to do likewise. My father, age 94, has an account at Hotmail, and logs on to it several times a day. His only complaint is all the spam that comes through.
    Best Regards, Ken

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    I agree with Bart...if the package isn't opened, return it and download ZoneAlarm. I've been using it for years and yes, it is still helpful even if you are using a dial-up ISP, rather than always-on DSL or Cable access. You'll be amazed at what it will catch. ZA also has the nice feature of watching your computer to insure that only programs that YOU want to access the Internet can do so. That helps insure that some trojan that gets by your virus protection can't "phone home".

    I actually use the pay-for version of ZoneAlarm, ZoneAlarm Pro. It has even a higher level of protection. Other privacy protectors include programs such as PestPatrol which helps guard against so-called "scum-ware"...advertising and privacy stealing techniques that are very prevalent on the 'net these days.

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  5. #5
    I would also recommend ZoneAlarm. I have used both the free version and the "Pro" version. Both are excellent products. The site that will check your PC is called Shields Up. Good luck

    Dan McLaughlin

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