The BBC is reporting that Symantec say that 30,000 Windows PC’s are being recruited into spam and virus spreading networks each day which is a massive increase from 2,000 a day 6 months ago.
Computer Weekly is also reporting a security hole in Microsoft Word (2000 and XP) which will let people run code on your machine. This does not yet have a fix.
So, if you must use Windows, make sure you keep your machine up to date with patches from Windows Update and Office up to date with OfficeUpdate, switch from Internet Explorer to a more secure browser like Firefox or Opera, use a personal firewall like ZoneAlarm and install a good virus checker and keep it up to date!
Oh, and don’t forget to clean out spyware with a program such as AdAware.
Of course if you don’t have to run Windows then you can think about switching to Linux, I’d suggest looking at a distribution like Ubuntu, Mandrake or Fedora.
You can even try out Linux without installing it by running it from a CD using the Knoppix boot-CD.
Don’t be part of the problem.