Viruses/Worms | Virus Protection | Software Distribution | Spyware | Spyware Protection |


Protecting Your Computer

Protecting your computer is an important step to keeping your computer and information safe and secure. This will protect not just your computer, but your identity and the UMSL computing network. Please check the Top 10 Computer Security Issues. (PDF file format)



A virus is a piece of computer code that attaches itself to a program or file so it can spread from computer to computer, infecting as it travels. Viruses can damage your software, your files and your computer.

A worm, like a virus, is designed to copy itself from one computer to another, but it does so by taking control of your computer and using it to send out infected files and information. Also, worms can allow someone else to take control of your computer remotely. Recent examples of worms include the Sasser worm and the Blaster worm.

A Trojan horse is a computer program that appears to be useful but actually does damage to your machine.

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Protection from Viruses

ITS has provided Microsoft Security Essentials software at no cost to you to protect your computer on the network. You can access and download this software at:

DIAL-UP USERS: Due to connection time-limits, connection-reliability, and one download, or attempted download, per user license limitations, those accessing this site over a dialup connection will be unable to proceed. Please use the alternate options below to obtain the software.

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Spyware is any program designed to collect information about you and your web practices. Many people are unaware that their computers are infected with Spyware agents that have secretly installed themselves onto their hard drives. These agents have been created for a number of reasons. Some are for advertising purposes, telling marketers what users search for, what they download, what sites they visit, etc., in order to send them pop-up advertisements that cater to their individual interests.

Not only is this an invasion of privacy and the cause of annoying strings of pop-ups, but the affected computers may also become more susceptible to hackers. Some forms of spyware are more malicious then your average advertisement popper, designed instead to transmit email addresses for spamming, as well as various forms of identification such as social security and credit card numbers.

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Protection from Spyware

Unfortunately, there is no software available for automatic Spyware blocking. Two tools that can aid in removing Spyware/Adware are Spybot Search and Destroy and Ad-Aware. SpyBot Search and Destroy can detect and remove spyware of different kinds from your computer. Ad-Aware: SE Personal also allows the detection and removal of spyware from your machine. If you need help installing and using this software, please contact the Technology Support Center at 314-516-6034.

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