The Best Free Computer Protection.

May 10, 2009 3:33:08 PM PDT
Lawrence Robreno knows the misery of having his identity stolen.

Lawrence Robreno, cybercrime victim said "They pretended they were me, calling up, making phone calls with my name, using my credit card, my information."

Like more than a 1,000,000 others in the last year, he had his identity stolen while shopping online.

"They started out small in 15, 25, dollar increments and they slowly increased. I tallied it up to somewhere close to $25,000." said Lawrence Robreno.

Consumer reports Dean Gallea cautions only shop at sites you trust. And it's essential to protect your computer from spyware, viruses and spam by installing security software.

Consumer reports tested security suites costing between 50 and 90 dollars. But Dean found free security software that's on par with the best.

To fight viruses: Antivr from free-av. com. To prevent spyware: Windows Defender from microsoft.com. And to stop spam: Spam fighter Standard from spamfighter.com.

You also want to protect against phishing. These emails look like they come from banks and other companies, but are actually lures to gain access to your accounts.

Consumer Watch Dean Gallea said, "Never click on links in emails that go to banks or other sites that have your personal information."

Instead, type your company's web address into your browser.

And for more protection, consumer reports recommended downloading free anti-phishing software, such as the McAfee Site Advisor, which warns when you go to a dangerous site.

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