Viruses & security threats


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Viruses & security threats

  1. 1. Viruses & Security Threats Unit 1 – Understanding Computer SystemsJMW 2012
  2. 2. By the end of this session:• All of you would be able to explain how viruses affect computers.• Most of you should understand how your identity can be stolen through phishing and spyware applications.• A few of you could explore other threats to data security, e.g. hacking, and actions that can be taken to minimise risks.
  3. 3. Viruses• Some viruses (or malware) try to gain entry to your computer in a similar way by pretending to be something else.• For example, that screensaver you downloaded or game you played may have a virus contained with it.• These viruses are sometimes called Trojan Horses.• Worms are viruses which attach themselves to files on your computer. Infected files then spread the virus as the worm attaches itself to other files on the system.• File sharing websites can often be a source of viruses. Avoid sharing illegal file-sharing sites and scan any programs downloaded from the Internet.
  4. 4. How can I protect myself?• Use a virus scanner to scan any files you download from the Internet or other computers.• Regularly scan your computer’s hard drive for viruses.• Keep your virus definitions up-to-date.
  5. 5. Identity Theft• Phishing emails pretend to be another company in order to extract personal information, such as passwords, from users.• The email asks you to click a link which takes you to a fake website and then enter your password (which is then stored by the phishers.)• Spyware hides on your computer and records everything you do and passes it on to criminals.• They can then steal your identity and pretend to be you – this is called “Identity Theft”
  6. 6. How can I protect myself?• Check the link shown in the email matches the website you go to when clicked.• Legitimate emails often use personal data, e.g. first name, which Phishers don’t have access to.• Never give out your password details on any website unless you are 100% sure it is the official website. If in doubt check the email received with the company before divulging any information.• Scan your computer regularly for spyware. Use firewalls to prevent unauthorised communication from your computer.
  7. 7. Your Task• Create a poster to raise aware of data security threats.• Your poster should: – Explain the risk – Give advice on how to minimise the risk Extra Challenge: • Explain why every computer should have a firewall installed. • When you buy something online, how is the debit/credit card data kept secure?
  8. 8. Peer Review of Posters• Look at the poster of the person sitting next to you.• Is it fit for purpose? – Does it explain at least one of the data security threats? – Does it provide advice to minimise the risks? – Does it stand out? Clear writing? Identify 2 good things about the poster (2 stars *) and one area for improvement (1 wish)