The other day I saw a PC that had been completely overrun with trojans, virii, and spyware. I won’t say where I saw this particular PC, but suffice it to say it had all the appropriate software installed originally to keep this from happening. However, after cleaning up the trojan that had the AV disabled, it was soon discovered that the Anti-virus definitions had last been updated in Sept. 2004, despite the presence of a nag screen that prompted the user to check for updates every “x” days. (Well, at least the nag screen would have come up before the trojan disabled the AV, but clearly this occurred much later than the last time definition files were updated.) Apparently, it wasn’t enough to make this user take any responsibility for their machine. On the other hand, as badly as this thing got infected, they had someone to fix it for them, so where was the incentive to take any responsibility? I’m certainly not suggesting that technology professionals not fix infected PCs, but I can’t help but wonder how much we act as enablers for irresponsible users? Knowing that they can always get their PC fixed for a few bucks or whatever seems to give them a false sense of security that they don’t have to worry about anything. Is there anything, aside from a catastrophic data loss that would get them to think about their part in PC security?
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