Hit By a Trojan or Two. Is Your Computer Safe? Are You Sure?

For the past couple of weeks, things haven't been normal for me.  I rearranged my office (a Spring Cleaning sort of thing) and with that, decided that I wasn't putting my netbook to good use.  After all, it's powerful.  It's pretty.

Still, I rarely used it.  

A geek friend explained to me that netbooks actually should last longer than laptops because heat doesn't mess with them as much.  Plus, I had an extra monitor I could stick on that baby and have another writing spot. 

Powered up the netbook, and voila.  An evildoer invaded my life.  

At first, I didn't know it.  However, as I added the netbook to my antivirus account, things began to happen.  Bad things.  Slowly but surely, the malware gutted program files so only shells were left, including programs like Chrome and Firefox and IE that allowed me to access the internet. 

The antivirus folk were no help.  Well, some help.  They got their software installed enough that it flashed a warning about discovering a trojan on the machine before the antivirus got blasted by the malware.

Finally, the Geeks got my netbook and after 7 hours of cleaning up things, they got the bad juju off the netbook and I finally had the weekend to reinstall all my software on the netbook ....

Scary part?  I had installed my cloud connection on the netbook - had they read my files?  I use online banking for some stuff.  Could they gain access somehow? 

Geeks have assured me that nope, no identity theft here.  Still, I've changed all my passwords and I'm monitoring my accounts for anything fishy.  I've disabled Java, done some other stuff too. 

So, if you're reading this post then stop right now and make sure that you've got your computer protected, and that you've got the latest updates downloaded for your security software.  

Because the other thing the Geeks told me was that there's a lot of bad stuff happening right now - lots of attacks like this, with others not escaping exposure like I did.   Don't know why there isn't more media coverage about this, but the Geeks would know about this upsurge and they're serious about evildoing computer attacks on the rise right now. 


On-Page versus Off-Page Search Engine Optimization: What's the Difference?

On Page SEO, short version, involves all the words that you can see on your web site's pages.  How this content is optimized for the search engines is just one component of effective SEO.  Here is where key words and key phrases get put to good use.  Captions, headlines, paragraphs, footers, disclaimers, etc. are all a part of On Page SEO. 

Off Page SEO, succinctly, is everything else.  Some of the off page factors include: linkage on the site, both internal links and external linkage; writing the text of internal links themselves; building site popularity through tweeting, commenting on forums and blogs, press releases, submitting to directories, etc.

There's a lot that goes into search engine optimization - and there's lots of stuff out there on the web for you to read about SEO, if you're interested.  (Read Google's SEO overview here.) There's also lots of people out there claiming to know all about SEO.  Maybe they do, maybe they don't.  Ask for examples of their accomplishments before you pay them anything.

Meanwhile, consider this.  The purpose behind optimizing content is to get your content noticed and highly ranked in search results on its themes or topics by the search engines.  Which for most folk mainly means Google.  You're competing with other content to get into the top spots.

Google is in the business of competing with other search engines to provide the more informative and on-target results to its reader's search requests.  If Yahoo could give you better results (and you should compare them often -- Yahoo gives better locator information IMHO, for example) then you'll switch to Yahoo, right?

It's really not rocket science.  Write the best content possible for your topic.  Think of your reader, and help them here.  Give them your expertise.  Give them links.  Give them information in easy to follow language. 

Help Google beat its competition, in other words.  Do this, and do this well, and you've achieve your SEO goals automatically.