Base installations of Operating Systems often have standard defaults that leave the system vulnerable. Find and use techniques to tighten the security of your system. Use and enable your firewall. Firewall Guide.
Disable File and Print sharing
Having file and print sharing enabled on your home computer makes your system vulnerable to intruders. Often your Internet Service Provider recommends disabling file & print sharing. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/199346
Use strong passwords
Having a strong password to access either your device, your email account or any other internet-based account helps mitigates the possibility of exposing sensitive data. Password guidelines
Secure your browser
Secure your home wireless network connection to prevent unauthorized use from outside.
Keep up to date with patches
Most vendors provide simple notification and update procedures. Even if you just bought brand new software or a brand new device, check for updates.
Windows Live Safety Center is a new, free service designed to help ensure the health of your PC. It checks for and removes viruses and spyware. It also improves your PC's performance by finding and removing unnecessary files. WTS recommends that you run the “Full Service Scan” provided by the Windows Live Safety Center service from Microsoft, found on this page: Microsoft Safety Scanner
Another security checking tool is the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA). This tool can be downloaded for free from Microsoft and includes a graphical and command line interface that can perform security scans of your system. Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer
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