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[ The PC Guide | System Care Guide | Data Loss and Virus Prevention | Virus Detection and Protection | Virus Infection Mechanisms and Prevention ]

Infection Over PC Networks

Virus infection over PC networks are becoming an increasingly difficult problem. As with any shared medium, a network provides the ability for users to share files, and where files are shared, viruses can be shared. In practice, virus infection via local area networks is still not that common; one simple reason is that boot sector viruses cannot be readily spread via a network, and boot viruses are a large percentage of the really difficult viruses out there.

There are a couple of things that you can do to minimize your chances of contracting a virus over a local network:

  • Control Your Connections: Carefully control who has access to your PC's local hard disk. Put an access password on any shared resources that allow others to write to your disk; don't just open up your disk to writing by anyone on the network. If possible, set up your system so that write access to your disk is limited to a single directory or directory structure. This makes it easy to scan for viruses in incoming files.
  • Scanning: Make a habit of scanning all new possible virus-containing files that are put on your PC over the network. This is easier if you limit the number of places that new files can be placed on your machine (see above). Do not run any programs that are placed into shared areas without scanning them first.

Next: Infection Via the Internet

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