With all of the stolen identities, viruses, Trojans and other malware, here are the steps you need to keep your computer safe:
- Purchase a good quality anti-virus/firewall (AV/F) program.
- Install the AV/F program. DO NOT backup data before installing, since this will just save any malware already on your computer. If possible, boot from the AV/F disk and perform a complete system scan.
- Update your operating system and your AV/F program. Run a second complete system scan.
- Backup your data to a series of Blu-Ray, DVD or CD ROMS and store in a place that is safe from theft, fire, electromotive pulse damage, etc. Bank safety deposit boxes are ideal.
- Change your passwords. Do not use any word or combination of words in any language that could appear in a dictionary as these are vulnerable. The password should be at least 20 characters long and include 2 upper case and 2 lower case letters, 2 numbers, 2 special character (such as !@#$%%), 3 polynomials, an imaginary number, an augmented 7th chord, and a mathematical impossibility.
- DO NOT WRITE YOUR PASSWORD ANYWHERE!
- Remember, if you can remember your password, it is not safe.
- Change all your passwords again.
- Turn the computer off and remove the power cable.
- Remove all other cables attached to the computer.
- Remove the screws holding the cover on your desktop OR if you’re using a laptop, remove the battery and all the screws on the bottom of the computer.
- Remove the screws on all boards, modules and devices inside your computer. If possible, unsolder all components from the printed circuit boards.
- Take each of these items and hide or bury each in a different county/parish. If possible, different states or provinces. (Note: For a variety of reasons, it is advisable that you not cross international borders with your computer parts.)
- Consult a professional hypnotist and ask him/her to erase all memories of any passwords or portions of passwords from your subconscious. (Although equally effective, lobotomies have unwanted side effects.)
Congratulations! Your computer is now safe! Enjoy!