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How Secure Are Your Small Business PCs?

written by: Joli Ballew•edited by: J. F. Amprimoz•updated: 9/20/2008

You can have an anti-virus solution, security cameras, spam filters, firewalls, and password-protected screen savers, but, your small business PCs still may not be totally secure.

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    Find Out How Secure Your Business PCs Really Are

    There’s one way to get a full report on the security of your small business PCs. Microsoft offers a free tool called the MBSA (Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer) that will check your current security configuration and look for missing critical security updates, common security slipups, and other vulnerabilities. The program will then produce a report with instructions on how to repair the security issues it finds. You can decide after viewing the report if any items need attention. Using this tool is a great way to begin the securing process.

    Tip: For more information about MBSA from Microsoft, read the latest MBSA KB article.

    To run this free security check and view a report, make sure you are logged on as an administrator and connected to the Internet. Then follow these steps:

    1. Click Start, and open Help And Support. In the Search window, type MBSA.

    2. From the Suggested Topics options, choose Finding Out About Your Computer's Security Settings.

    3. Read the article that appears in the right pane, and then click the link to access the MBSA page on the Microsoft Web site.

    4. Read the article regarding the MBSA (Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer).

    5. Follow the links and download and install the application. You'll have to agree to let Microsoft see if you have a valid copy of Windows, and you'll have to install ActiveX controls if you haven't already. You'll be prompted to do these things. If prompted by your anti-virus software that a malicious script is present, choose to run the script after the program is installed. Make sure you download the version for your specific language; there will be several options.

    6. In the installation box, choose Run. Work through the wizard to set up the program.

    7. Open the program from the Start>All Programs menu.

    8. When prompted, choose the computer to scan (if several are listed), and select Start Scan.

    The report will outline serious issues, such as missing Office security updates, and will notify you if the Guest account is enabled, if there are too many administrators, and more. With the report in hand, make the needed repairs to secure each of your small business PCs.

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