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Beginners Guides: Ten Steps to a Secure PC

Beginners Guides: Ten Steps to a Secure PC - PCSTATS
Abstract: With this guide, PCstats has set out to inform you clearly and concisely of the dangers you face.
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: PCSTATS Aug 29 2007   Mike Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > PCSTATS

Step 9

Step 9. Secure your shared files

The Danger: Intruders may access your shared files

The Cause: By default, Windows XP uses the simple file sharing system. This allows any user that has authenticated to your computer to have full access to all shared files. In Windows XP Home, the 'guest' user account is the account used by all remote users to access shared files. Of course, the guest account has no password by default, allowing unlimited, non-password access to your shared files for virtually anyone who finds your IP address.

While a firewall will block this type of access in most cases, it still pays to limit your venerability by configuring simple file sharing and the guest user account more securely than the default.

The Cure: Secure and configure the guest user account

If you are using Windows XP Professional, you should password protect and disable the guest account. This will force any intruder to use one of the user accounts you created or the administrator account, both of which should now be secure if you followed the above procedures.

Make sure you are logged in as a user with administrative privileges (the first user created during the XP install process has these, as does the administrator).

Right click on 'my computer' and select 'manage.' Expand 'local users and groups' then 'users.' Highlight the 'guest' account and right click. Choose 'set password' and provide the account with a secure password. Now right-click the guest account again and choose 'properties.'

PCSTATS

Check the 'account is disabled' box.If you are using Windows XP Home, you cannot truly disable the guest account, as it is used as an integral part of the file sharing system. You can password protect it though… Bring up the command prompt (start/run and type 'cmd') and type 'net user guest password' where 'password' is the password you want to use to secure the account.

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Contents of Article: PCSTATS
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guides: Ten Steps to a Secure PC
 Pg 2.  The Cure to Step 1.
 Pg 3.  The Cure to Step 2.
 Pg 4.  Step 2 Con't
 Pg 5.  Step 3
 Pg 6.  The Cure to Step 4
 Pg 7.  Step 5
 Pg 8.  Step 6.
 Pg 9.  The cure to Step 8
 Pg 10.  — Step 9
 Pg 11.  Step 10

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