A majority of my service calls have two things in common. A Virus and Limewire. Limewire is a very popular P2P program typically used for sharing music and videos over the internet. Unfortunately, it is unmoderated and many files are mislabeled to get you to download them, where they then reveal their true nature, loading spyware/malware and viri onto unsuspecting users. In the good old days of viri, they simply trashed your operating system, forcing you to reload everything. These days they try to remain undetected, lurking in the background, sending your passwords and other information to some secret server deep in Siberia, or popping up porno ads when Grandma looks up “Whitehouse” on the internet.
Safely using Limeware
While the legality of P2P programs is still being fought over in the courts and Internet Service providers are still struggling under the increased bandwidth useage, Limewire is going to be around, if only because it’s what all the kids like to use. So, with a few tips outlined below, let’s try to at least make it safer to use!
2) Install a Reliable Anti-Virus Program! Currently Microsoft Security Essentials is the preferred FREE Anti-Virus program to use. Be sure to uninstall the McAfees or Nortons install left over from when you bought your computer. They cost money every year and have proven to be unreliable and resource heavy.
3) Getting and Setting up LIMEWARE;
- Go to www.limewire.com and download the free edition. While you are there, read About using P2P software safely
- Do not have the default saved file folders.
- Under uploads, put all settings to 0 to not share your personal files.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, BE A SMART USER!
Many files which are not audio or video could be viruses; check the size and description. Most songs are about 5 MB(+/-) and have extensions of “.mp3″ or “.wma”.
DO NOT download any file that ends in “.exe”. These are applications and are most likely viruses. If you take the risk, download to a limited user account, scan with anti-virus and anti-spyware before even thinking about running the file. (Also “Right Click>Run as..” the limited user).
If you follow the steps outlined above, educate yourself on what is and isn’t ok to download and have luck on your side, navigating the world of P2P should be relatively safe. Just remember, you are never really anonymous on the Internet. The person on the other end of your P2P connection could be Uncle Sam and he has your number.