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Combating Viruses, Beyond the PC

Combating Viruses, Beyond the PC

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Published by vaibvhav

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Published by: vaibvhav on Dec 04, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Combating Viruses, Beyond the PC
Download Software
By now most users are aware of the need to implement antivirus software on individual
systems But a large percentage of the hardware and software used to provide something
for those users to use resides outside them What are they and what can be done to
protect them from virus attacks
- , , -,
Computer viruses attack servers web file ftp and e mail along with routers and othe
 - '.
network gear along with individual PCs
' ,
Servers are usually substantially the same as PCs only with more memory disk space
 . , -
and processors Web servers house web pages and programs for Internet users e mail
 , -,
servers store send and receive e mail and file and ftp servers make possible storage
and distribution of all manner of files for other systems Routers are simply specialized
 , , .
computers with proprietary operating systems for routing network traffic
Most operate much like an individuals system and are subject to the same kinds of 
 . -
attacks They can therefore be protected by many of the same means regular use of 
reliable antivirus software and being firewall guarded to shut down vulnerable entry points
on the Internet
What else can be done
, ,
Since servers and routers provide services to multiple sometimes thousands of user 
 ' .
systems theyre more frequently attacked Users can help administrators of these systems
by keeping their own systems clean and refraining from passing on viruses to others
across them Administrators can help themselves by forgoing the temptation to use them
 - , ,
as personal computers with full e mail clients word processing software and fully
enabled browsers
Users can help administrators and themselves by being more careful in browser selection
 . -
and configuration Most could profit from better self education in how to minimize the
 ' ' .
target area for hackers by changing browser settings Users and computer professionals
have made strides in voicing concern over security vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer 
 Adopting other browsers in greater numbers will help to get the message across
' ' '
Users and administrators should avoid using bootable CDs and DVDs that havent been
virus scanned after being burned with desired software and files Sometimes the process
 , .
that creates them propagates viruses just as floppy disks did some years ago
, ,
FTP servers used to store and provide sending and receiving of files over networks
 . ( ) '
should become a thing of the past Vanilla ftp File Transfer Protocol cant be secured
since passwords are passed in clear text unencrypted over the network where they can
 . / .
be picked up by sniffers Sniffers are software and or hardware used to spy on networks
Secure FTP versions should be used instead
Users should take an active role in encouraging administrators to lock down systems
Most admins do a very good job with limited time and resources but security is usually
well down their list of priorities Users who show an interest can alter that in a
constructive way by showing that they care Very few servers have a thorough check by a
skilled security expert at any time in their serviceable lifetimes That would change if 
 ' .
users didnt passively assume by default that everything is fine until things go sour 
The Future
Microsoft and other large vendors are making strides in designing hardware and software
 ' '. ,
which is better protected out of the box Just as one example one common virus exploit
 ' '. '
is called a buffer overrun Memory is used by all programs and its divided into areas
called buffers of a certain size
Hackers use a well known technique for causing malicious program instructions to
overflow those buffers providing them with more access than the legitimate program
 . .
intended A large percentage of security fixes involves securing these buffers Hardware
 ' '
and operating system designers are addressing this by making buffer overrun a thing of 
 , .
the past through fundamental design changes
. ,
Much more sophisticated ideas are on the drawing board Once they become a reality
everyone will benefit

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