Keep in mind, though, that no single anti-virus product can catch all of the viruses, trojans, rootkits and worms that are out there.
Over the years, I have developed a number of customized scanning methods to eliminate viruses, and they take a long time to complete. There are no easy fixes.
Also remember that a computer that is possibly infected should not be on the Internet, and yes, email is the Internet.
Pull the plug, if need be.
The longer an infected computer is connected to the Internet, the worse things can become and the more likely you are to end up with damaged files or a computer that is not worth fixing.
The technique of sending out email while masquerading as someone else is called “spoofing.”
If you are the victim of spoofing, there’s not much you can do.
Sure, you can complain to the appropriate law enforcement authorities, but the likelihood of the bad guys being caught, charged, prosecuted and convicted is slim to none.
If things get really bad, you may need to change your email address.
The best thing to do is to not get on the bad guys list in the first place.
The bad guys sometimes use “bots” to scurry around the Internet, gathering email addresses.
Don’t allow your email address to become a clickable link on a website.
Don’t participate in email mass-forwarding schemes of jokes, stories and pictures, such as those emails you receive that are forwards of forwards of forwards, Fw: fw: fw:, etc., ad nauseum, where everyone is forwarding hundreds of different email addresses all around the Internet.
Don’t post your email address on public forums or message board websites.
Whenever possible, avoid giving out your real email address.
These measures may seem harsh, but the Internet has a dark side that must be respected. Do so, and you’ll enjoy the happy Internet that you deserve.
Dave Moore of Norman has been an independent computer service technician since 1984. He also teaches computer security workshops to public and private organizations. He can be reached at 919-9901 or davemoorecomputers.com.