As soon as we acquire a piece of equipment, we expect to be able to plug it in and get on with our lives. For the most part, this expectation is met, even if the home computer is not. The only thing you have to do is switch it on and start surfing after plugging a few things into the rear. As soon as you boot up a Windows PC, it asks if you want to turn on Automatic Updates (recommended), but little more in terms of how to properly secure your PC and the network it’s plugged into.

An animated tutorial or movie explaining these five important procedures to safeguarding a home PC and network should be provided by PC manufacturers.

A NAT router should be installed in the first place. A router that uses NAT (Network Address Translation) is your first line of defence on the Internet because it is inexpensive and quick to configure. If your PC is connected directly to your Internet connection (such as your broadband router) with the Windows firewall turned on, you are visible to everyone on the Internet. If you have a public Internet address, the router will translate it into a private one that is not visible to anybody else.

Second, change the router password. A default username and password are pre-programmed into every router. The public is aware of these, and a variety of lists can be found online. If your computer becomes infected with remote-control malware, an attacker can gain access to this data even though it is ordinarily out of bounds to an attacker. He has complete control over the settings and can transport you to any location he choose. It’s not good.

Install and/or upgrade a security software. Antivirus software or a security suite like McAfee Internet Security or Norton Internet Security are now included with the majority of new PCs. It’s a shame that ESET Smart Security does not come pre-installed on new PCs, as this is the one that I use the most. Update the software and have it do so automatically if possible.

Set the option to automatically download and install new versions of the software. Do this now if you didn’t do it when you first set up the machine.

5. Be aware of and adhere to safe computer use. As long as you click on pop-ups, open all of your emails, and open odd links, even the most advanced security measures won’t assist you. The criminals’ success is largely due to this, which is a sad fact. Take advantage of these free resources to learn how to be safe on the Internet: