How to Protect Your Computer Against Remote Access Trojans

by eHow Contributor
Don't open email attachments from unknown senders.

Don't open email attachments from unknown senders.

Remote access Trojans can infiltrate your computer, causing all sorts of trouble and compromising the security of your system. These malware programs can work silently in the background, gathering information and slowing down your computer in the process. The good news is that with the proper software and safe Internet and email habits, you can reduce the risk of getting a Trojan.

1

Back up all of your data and do a clean restore of your computer. If you've had unknown problems with remote access Trojans or surfed the Internet without proper anti-virus software, doing this will give you a clean slate to start from and eradicate any malicious programs that may have been hiding in the background.

2

Install both anti-virus and anti-spyware software before browsing the Internet. Your Internet service provider may offer you free software and updates. Many companies also offer "lite" versions of their anti-virus programs that are not as thorough as the full versions but are much better than having no safeguard at all.

3

Use a firewall on your computer. This will help immensely to protect you against remote access Trojans and keep unwanted individuals from accessing your computer and its file system.

4

Do not open any unknown email attachments or respond to emails from unknown senders. Doing either one of these things can make you extremely vulnerable to remote access Trojans. People who send these malicious emails are usually counting on the fact that they can dupe you into downloading their files or responding to the email based on a catchy subject line. If you are unsure of whether or not you know the sender of the email, err on the safe side and don't open it or download any of the attached files. If it is important enough and the sender is legitimate, he will find another way to contact you or send another message with a more specific subject line.

5

Stay away websites that contain pirated software or file sharing. This includes websites that offer torrent downloads and similar file sharing systems. These sites are absolute breeding grounds for remote access Trojans and all sorts of malicious software disguised as legitimate programs.

6

Have a separate email address for filling out forms online and junk mail. Many times when you fill out a form online and are asked for your email address, the company sells your address to other companies that will continually spam you. Occasionally people with malicious intentions get hold of these email addresses and use them to send spyware. If you keep this email address separate from your personal email, it will reduce your chances of accidentally downloading a malicious file.

7

Turn on the website checker function in your browser. Most popular web browsers have a function that checks the credentials of a website against a database of known good websites and will be able to tell you if you are entering a site that could pose a danger to your computer.

Tip

  • check Pay attention to what the search engines indicate about malicious websites. Google and Yahoo! both have a feature that will alert you if they think a website returned in the search results will harm your computer.

About the Author

This article was created by a professional writer and edited by experienced copy editors, both qualified members of the Demand Media Studios community. All articles go through an editorial process that includes subject matter guidelines, plagiarism review, fact-checking, and other steps in an effort to provide reliable information.

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