Protect Your PC From External Intruders.
The DDoS attacks launched
were the result of so-called zombies (hacked computers with
software programs installed that were all activated at one time by their
creator). How can you prevent this from happening on your computer? There are
two primary ways to secure unauthorized remote access to your computer: by
limiting the network connectivity to only what is needed or by installing
personal firewall software on your computer. These precautions are becoming more
necessary with the rapid deployment of always-on xDSL (all types of Digital
Subscriber Lines) and cable modems.
Navigate to Start, Settings, Control Panel, and Network, and you can see a list of the network options that are installed on your computer. You need to know what components are necessary to maintain your dial-up access accounts or other network connections. If there is anything you see under the Network icon that is unnecessary, you can remove it by selecting it and clicking Remove. Be especially vigilant with File Sharing; it is superfluous on almost all standalone computers and can be a major security hole. Almost all changes here will require a reboot, but you can remove multiple items in one session and reboot just once. Keep track of what you remove; you might need to add it back if you run into problems.
There are several products available, including Security Administrator (http://www.softheap.com) These products secure connections to and from your computer, and some scan for zombies that are currently installed.