Whenever you connect to the Internet, your computer is at increased risk. To mitigate that risk, Microsoft Windows Vista includes many new and updated features that make it easier for you to secure your computer when the computer is connected to the Internet. As discussed in Chapter 4, “Using Internet Explorer 7,” Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 operates in a protected mode that isolates it from other applications and prevents add-ons from writing content in any location other than temporary Internet file folders without explicit user consent. Isolating Internet Explorer from other applications and restricting write locations prevents many types of malicious software (malware) from exploiting the computer.
To protect your computer from other types of malicious software and attacks, Windows Vista includes Windows Security Center, Windows Firewall, and Windows Defender. Windows Security Center helps protect your computer by giving you a central location for checking and managing essential security settings. Windows Firewall helps prevent hackers and malicious software from gaining access to your computer. Windows Defender helps protect your computer from spyware and other types of malicious programs.
This book was written using the Windows Vista Beta to provide an early introduction to the operating system. More so than any other area of Windows Vista, the security features discussed in this book are subject to change. Some of the features might not be included in the final product, and some of the features might be changed substantially.