2.6. Implementing Security Best Practices

In the following sections, you discover some basic best practices that can help you secure your environment. These sections are designed to be a summary of features that I discuss throughout the chapters of this book.

2.6.1. Hardening a system

The first thing you can do to secure your system is to harden it: You remove any software that you are not using and disable any Windows services that are not needed. The concept of hardening comes from the fact that hackers compromise systems by leveraging software that is installed or running on the system. The less software you have running, the less likely you are to be hacked!

2.6.2. Patching systems

Regularly patching the system by running Windows Update is critical. As Microsoft finds out about security problems with its OS and software, its programmers fix the problem and deliver the fix through the Windows Update site. To ensure that you are getting the security fixes and patches, you must run Windows Update often. More on this topic in the next chapter.

Microsoft changed Windows Update to Microsoft Update so that you can now get updates for more than just the Windows OS. You can download updates for a number of Microsoft products from the Microsoft Update site, such as Windows and Microsoft Office.

2.6.3. Firewalls

Make sure you turn on the Firewall feature in Windows. The firewall helps ...

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