Benefits and Features of McAfee Total Protection 2011

The article has been designed only for informational purposes. The information covers advantages pertaining to McAfee Total Protection 2011, an award-winning security suite from McAfee for computer and online protection.

McAfee is ranked among the leading vendors of security software. The company has been catering to customers’ PC security needs for years with its wide range of products including McAfee AntiVirus Plus, Internet Security, Total Protection, WaveSecure, SiteAdvisor Android Edition, and Family Protection Android Edition among others. The latest McAfee Total Protection 2011 adds another feather into the cap of McAfee’s recognized and long-standing history. Below is the list of all the benefits and features of the suite:

Benefits & Features:

Anti-Virus/Anti-Spyware: The suite offers excellent dual protection from both viruses and spyware through its Anti-Virus/Anti-Spyware engine. Other than these, the suite detects and removes adware, malware, and rootkits that interfere with your computer.

Firewall: The suite integrates a Two-Way firewall protection intended for keeping hackers and/or unauthorized users away from getting into your computer.

McAfee Active Protection technology: This technology offers real-time and instant protection from new as well as everyday growing threats. This essentially ensures that there remains no virtual gap between your computer and the suite. The technology quickly scans and removes these threats without having you to wait for the latest updates to be downloaded and installed on your computer.

Easy-to-Use Interface: Well, you don’t need to be a computer geek to get the hang of everything. The suite integrates a simple interface that a normal user can use and navigate to different features. You can schedule your scan time and idle timer without sacrificing resources as well as time.

McAfee SiteAdvisor: This tool launches alerts about the websites, which might try to steal your sensitive information like confidential, identity, email address, banking etc. The tool gives site ratings on 22 search engines. This essentially means you can determine which website to visit and which not.

Anti-Spam & Email Protection: The suite offers excellent protection from spam emails and protects your email account from fishy mails.

Light on Resources: The suite is very light on computer resources. It supports Windows 7 (32bit and 64bit), Windows Vista SP1 (32bit and 64bit), and Windows XP SP2 or higher (32bit). It only requires 1GHz or higher processor, 512MB or higher RAM for Windows XP, 800×600 or greater resolution, 400MB free space on hard drive, 2GB RAM or higher for Windows 7 or Vista, and an active internet connection.

Browser Support: The suite supports Microsoft Internet Explorer (6.0 or higher version), Google Chrome (6.0 or higher), and Mozilla Firefox (3.5 or higher) for anti-phishing.

Miscellaneous tools: McAfee QuickClean clears all the junk files, which cause your computer to slow down or perform sluggish. McAfee Disk Defragmenter arranges the fragmented data into files and folders. McAfee Shredder deletes all the unnecessary files that are needed no longer.

Help and Support: McAfee has made several tools available on its online support center. You can search the database and resolve common issues on your own. Therefore, you don’t need to spend your money and time on contacting McAfee technical support service for common problems.

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Who’s Watching What You Type?

If someone entered your home, uninvited and installed numerous cameras and listening devices in order to monitor your activities, you would quite rightly be outraged. While such a situation, unless you are living in the Big Brother House, would be considered ridiculous, the same cannot be said for the humble home computer.

Recently released research alarmingly shows that home PC’s are increasingly likely to host software which can watch each and every keystroke the user inputs. According to the research compiled from an audit conducted jointly by the software firm, WebRoot and services provider, EarthLink, the average home PC hosts 28 so-called spyware programs.

Whilst the worst examples of spyware are written by virus writers to steal passwords and hijack computers to launch “denial of service” attacks against web-servers, the vast majority are used to collate marketing information and then target advertising according to the end-users web surfing habits.

The WebRoot/EarthLink audit surveyed more than 1.5 million PC’s during the last 12 months and discovered an amazing 41 million incidents of spyware; adware, Trojans, tracking cookies and other undesirable programs.

Most of these programs are loaded into the computer memory when the PC is started up. From here, the program will work silently, often giving no clues as to its existence. However, unexplained browser window pop-up’s, often advertising adult services and mysterious alterations to the browsers homepage setting are more often than not an indication that spyware is present and active on a computer. One particular piece of spyware, which is proving to be very expensive for many home users, is that of Trojan Diallers. Diallers, often without any warning to the end-user, hangs up the current net connection and then automatically reconnects using a Premium Rate telephone number, thus running up huge telephone bills. The activities of companies using this technology as a revenue stream are currently under investigation in the UK by government watchdogs.

A hard-disk and memory overflowing with spyware used to be one of the unfortunate consequences of visiting sex and adult orientated sites; a kind of eSTD. Like most Internet marketing technologies, from the pop-up to the pop-under and the first snowball of Spam, spyware began life serving the adult industry. Then, just like pop-up, spyware filtered through all aspects of ecommerce. In an interview to the BBC, David Moll, CEO of WebRoot, said that spyware has now become so common across the whole of the Internet, that it can be contracted from nearly anywhere.

So-called “drive-by downloads” are now responsible for most infections of spyware. The term “drive-by” refers to the casualness of the infection. By simply visiting an ordinary webpage a user can unwittingly initiate an automatic download of spyware onto their computer. There are no clues and no warnings.

In a recent, carefully controlled and closed demonstration, it took me less than 20 minutes to create a spyware program and embed it into a webpage. Using colleagues who had previously been made aware of the nature of the experiment, I invited them to take a look at this “special” but very ordinary looking webpage. Within seconds of visiting this webpage, the spyware went to work taking a snapshot of their hard disk, a snapshot of their Favourites folder and a copy of their browsing history. Before they had even finished reading the webpage, the spyware was already transferring their information to my server. It’s as easy as that! Equally that same code could be manipulated to perform a total trash of the hard disk or some other equally miserable and criminal act.

Speaking to the BBC, David Moll explained.

“Some (spyware programs) lurk on misspelled URLs and strike those that type faster than their fingers can carry them. As a result you do not end up where you expect to be.”

Alarmingly, users do not even need to visit a website to contract spyware. The preview window in Microsoft’s Outlook Express allows emails containing HTML and any other code which can be placed on a normal webpage, to be loaded, without warning. Companies looking to implant spyware using the “drive-by” principal are regularly exploiting this glaringly obvious flaw in the design of Outlook Express.

“If you get one piece of spyware, you will get five because the business model says they pay each other to pass on information about victims,” said Mr Moll.

Thankfully anti-spyware/adware programs such as Ad-Aware (free) and WebRoot’s own offering, Spy Sweeper can clean up a PC and even help prevent further infections, but just like anti-virus software, anti-spyware software needs to be kept up-to-date to remain effective.

In addition to providing software solutions to this problem, legislators too are seeking to end this electronic intrusion. In the USA an anti-spyware bill is moving towards approval in Congress. If successfully implemented, this bill will force firms who wish to use spyware to first receive permission from the end-user before it is installed. But even before any new laws come into place, spyware makers are already working on next generation coding which keep their programs intact and operational….perhaps even on your PC.

How to Disable McAfee Firewall

McAfee firewall comes as a built-in component of a few McAfee antivirus programs namely McAfee AntiVirus Plus 2012/11 and McAfee Internet Security etc. McAfee firewall also comes as a standalone program namely McAfee Personal Firewall, McAfee Personal Firewall Plus, and McAfee Internet Security etc. In case you experience a problem with your network or wireless connection, you may think of disabling McAfee firewall. So, here is a free McAfee firewall support guide for you. It will help you easily disable McAfee firewall program.

Instructions:

McAfee Antivirus Plus 2012/11 and McAfee Internet Security

The user interface for these three antivirus programs is quite similar. So, you can easily turn off firewall in whichever of the three programs you are using. Look for the M icon on the desktop or in the system tray. Double-click the icon to open the McAfee antivirus console. The screen that will open now will be anything by the name SecurityCenter, Internet Security, or AntiVirus Plus 2012/11 depending on the type of McAfee program you have.

On the Home screen, you will see the security status of your computer. Look at the third option which is Firewall: On. It indicates that the firewall is turned on. Click the angle sign next to Firewall: On. Click the Settings link on the right hand side. You will see the firewall status. Click the Turn off button. When prompted for a confirmation and action to turn the firewall back on, select a time period from the drop-down arrow. You can select any time period from the given options. If you want to disable the firewall permanently, select Never and then hit the Turn off button. Save the changes and exit the McAfee console.

McAfee Personal Firewall& McAfee Personal Firewall Plus

Look for the M icon in the system tray, right-click on it, and select Personal Firewall from the drop-down options. From Personal Firewall, point the mouse to select Disable. Alternatively, you can double-click the M icon to open the McAfee SecurityCenter console. When in the console, look for Personal Firewall or Personal Firewall+ (depending on your version) in the left hand panel and click it. You will see the status and history of the firewall program. Look at the top where it says ‘Personal Firewall or Personal Firewall Plus is currently protecting your computer. Click here if you want to disable Personal Firewall Plus’. Click on disable, the underlined link. Confirm the action if prompted.

In McAfee Personal Firewall Plus, you can turn off firewall in another way also. Double-click the M icon to open the McAfee SecurityCenter console. Click Internet & Network in the left hand panel and then click Configure. Click the Firewall protection is enabled strip. Click the Off button. When prompted, select a time period to turn the firewall automatically back on and then hit the OK button. You can select Never from the drop-down arrow in case you want to turn off the firewall permanently.

Additional Tips:

You must re-enable firewall after your issue has resolved. Firewall protects your computer from unauthorized access and hackers. Contact a McAfee technical support or McAfee antivirus support service in case firewall doesn’t turn off and cause further issues.