The latest report of a big computer attack by hackers may not be much to worry about according to a leading net-head. Iowa native Chris Pirillo, who advises webmasters and programmers on computer matters, won’t get worked up about reports that a major attack may be coming via a security hole in Microsoft programs. You’ll keep hearing it for years, he predicts, and users just have to stay up-to-date and apply patches as they become available. Computer software programs with millions of components are always vulnerable to the discovery of small flaws or holes, and the companies offer a “patch” to fix each one, but Pirillo says nine times out of ten people don’t take advantage of them. He humorously suggests a biblical reference, that all computers are “born with original sin” as they’re bound to have hardware and software “issues” inherent in using technology. Pirillo says movies and books about apocalyptic computer attacks have people wondering if the whole system could crash the internet or anyone’s home computer. People tend to fear they’re going to get hacked, but the Internet’s weathered many attacks. Pirillo says nothing will “take down the internet” because so many people have come to use and depend on e-mail, web pages and the other resources offered by the net. Finding a “patch” and getting it downloaded into your computer gets easier all the time. There are a lot of antivirus packages out there, many at websites that let you update your protection at the click of a link. Pirillo cautions that having an antivirus program doesn’t protect you completely — you must find the latest updates for it, and install them.
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