And there you go: that’s how easy it is to completely brick your newly bought PC. Luckily, it’s just as easy to prevent that from happening. So here’s one for the Consumerist Kit: how to protect your computer from viral scumbags without paying a dime. This is only valid for Windows users, the suckers.
Just when we think that MySpace couldn’t sink any lower in our esteems unless a gigantic bottomless pit opened up beneath the corporate headquarters and the tentacles of Cthulhu him/her/itself coiled around it to drag it into the chthonic pit… MySpace starts infecting users with spyware.
A couple years back, when visiting my parents in Boston, my father woke me up in a flurry of panic in the middle of the night, dragging me groggily to the computer room. Pointing at the screen, he showed me numerous desktop icons that were all directed at sites specializing in fetishistic porn sites dedicated to the sexual proclivities of cartoon characters. While my father did admit to having visited these sites on occasion “for laffs”, he uncategorically denied installing any software from them. He begged me to clean them off his computer before my mother could discover what had happened. Five minutes later, I was back in bed fifty dollars richer and my father had been introduced to scumware for the first time.
Starting in August 2004, Ancheta turned to a new, more lucrative method to profit from his botnets, prosecutors said. Working with a juvenile in Boca Raton, Fla., whom prosecutors identified by his Internet nickname “SoBe,” Ancheta infected more than 400,000 computers.