Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
Anti-virus protection, critical security patches and a secure wireless connection have always been essential processes on my networks. My main concern has always been to protect my bank account by keeping the bad guy out.
In my presentations I’ve always stressed the importance of making sure your wireless connection is secured, to prevent skeevy sex offender neighbors or wackos parked in front of your business from surfing for child porn and downloading it to your PC.
Once a predator uses your Internet connection to go to into the bowels of the web, your Internet Protocol address, which is connected to your ISP billing address, is now considered one that is owned by a criminal. If law enforcement happens to be chatting with that person, who’s using your Internet connection to trade lurid child porn, then someone may eventually knock on your door at 3 AM with a battering ram. And in another freakish and relatively new twist, hackers can use a virus to crack your network and gain remote control access, and then store child porn on your hard drive.
An AP investigation found plenty of people who have been victimized in this way. Maybe their PCs were being used as a virtual server, or maybe they were being framed by someone with a vendetta against them, but either way, they had child pornography planted on their computers. Once that porn is discovered by a friend, family member, or computer technician, the victim is arrested.
This is the kind of “breach” that can cost you thousands in legal fees, your marriage, relationships, your job, and your standing in society. In one case, a virus changed the default home page on a man’s PC, and his seven year old daughter discovered it. The guy was arrested and eventually lost custody of his daughter. And you think you’ve got problems.
When you click a link in an email or a pop up advertisement in your browser, you may inadvertently download one of these viruses, which can then visit child pornography websites and download files onto your hard drive.
It also important to point out that most criminal investigators will say that “a virus put the child porn on my PC” is a bunch of hooey and a common defense used by the presumed innocent until proven guilty. Simply don’t give anyone a chance to doubt by doing the following:
Dont be a scumbag child pornographer. Where there’s smoke there’s usually fire.
Make sure your anti virus up to date and set to run automatically.
Update your web browser to the latest version. An out of date web browser is often riddled with holes worms can crawl through.
Update your operating systems critical security patches automatically
Lock down your wireless internet connection with the WPA security protocol
Invest in Intelius Identity Theft Protection. While not all forms of identity theft can be prevented, you can effectively manage your personal identifying information by knowing what’s buzzing out there in regards to YOU. “Disclosures”