Community News

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Compromised computer? Clean it before heading online again

Having your home computer hacked is something no one wants to experience, but unfortunately it does happen from time to time. If your computer has been compromised, there are certain things you should do before venturing online with it again. This is particularly important before you conduct any online banking. Included below are several steps you should take to ensure your computer is safe to take online again:
1.      Change your passwords to all financial or other critical sites immediately (and frequently) using a safe computer not normally used to conduct banking activities. Using a different computer minimizes, if not eliminates, the chances of the fraudsters gaining the newly updated password information.
2.      Stop accessing financial sites from the compromised computer until:
a)      You’ve reported this to police (as it is fraud); and
b)      You’ve taken steps to clean the PC that was compromised, as recommended below:
                                                        i.            Have a software firm ‘clean’ the computer to ensure that it is free of all unauthorized programs.
                                                      ii.            Have the software firm confirm that all virus protection and firewall software is updated to its most recent version.
                                                    iii.            Have the software firm report in writing all unauthorized software found, the action taken and that the virus protection software is current and up to date.

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