There is identity theft, credit card fraud, and many other things that can happen to you and your money if someone steals your information. Windows computers can have trojan viruses, key loggers, and other security holes on it that thieves can use to steal your information from your computer. You can purchase all kinds of expensive antivirus software, antimalware, etc. for your Windows computer and still become a victim of identity theft. You are in luck, there are ways you can prevent this almost free!
How to Prevent Becoming a Victim of Computer Fraud
You can easily run Linux! There are no viruses that are going to get installed on your Linux computer without you knowing. You would have to physically install the virus yourself and give the virus your root (administrator) password. Linux is also a lot more secure than Windows. So you won’t have to worry about someone cracking your passwords and getting into your computer’s information.
If you are not wanting to install Linux on your computer for free. You can always run a live Linux distribution from a USB stick or a cdrom. When you use a live Linux distribution anything that is stored in cache, temporary files, etc. anything that may contain information someone can steal and use to steal your money or identity is erased as soon as your turn off your computer. So if someone steals your USB stick or cdrom and boots it up on their computer, there will be no information of you logging into your bank accounts or purchasing products online. Best of all you can download Linux for free. You will just have to buy a cd-r, dvd-r, or a USB stick. Which I’m sure most of you will probably have laying around your home somewhere.
Where Can I Download Linux
This depends on if you want to install Linux onto your hard drive or if you want to run a live Linux distribution from a USB stick, CD-R, or DVD-R.
Install Linux to Hard Drive
If you are wanting to install Linux to your hard drive you will need to partition your hard drive so you don’t erase Windows, unless you don’t care. When installing Linux on your hard drive you can install almost any Linux distribution. Here are the Linux distributions I recommend using.
The first 4 are pretty easy to install and use. Gentoo Linux can be a little complicated to install if you’ve never done any kind of hard drive partitioning or have worked in a CLI. The rest have a guided wizard type install that walk you through the steps. Gentoo Linux does have an install guide on their website you can read and follow if you do want to go that route. There are also tons more Linux distributions you can use as well. You can see a whole list of Linux distributions on distrowatch.
Use a Live Linux Distribution
If you are wanting to run a live Linux distribution you have fewer choices as not every Linux distribution comes as a live Linux distribution. With some Linux knowledge and tweaking you can install any Linux distribution to a USB stick, but this really wouldn’t be a live Linux distribution anymore. It would be like installing to your hard drive, but instead installing to a USB stick, but that’s going to be another Linux topic. Here are the live Linux distributions I recommend to make your banking and online purchases secure.
- Fedora Live Linux
- Ubuntu Live Linux
- MacPup Live Linux
- Damn Small Linux Live
- Damn Small Linux Not
- Slax Live Linux
- Pentoo Live Linux
Some of the live Linux distributions may not support your wireless card out of the box. Like Damn Small Linux since it is such a small distribution you are limited to the more popular wireless drivers. So if you are wanting to run this live Linux on a laptop, you may want to choose a different live distribution unless you want to try it and see if your wireless card is supported. There are also tons more live Linux distributions out there. These are just the ones I recommend using.
What to do After Downloading Linux
Linux on CD-R or DVD-R
After you have downloaded the Linux you want to run, you need to burn it to a CD-R, DVD-R, or set it up on a USB flash drive. So open your favorite burning software like Nero, Roxio, etc. and select burn an image, insert your CD-R or DVD-R, click burn, and you’re done! Now reboot your computer leaving the CD or DVD in your computer and your computer should boot from the CD or DVD drive. If not you may have to go into your BIOS setup by hitting F1, DEL, ESC, F10, etc. depending on how you computer is setup, then go to boot options and make sure your CD or DVD drive is 1st on the boot list.
Linux on USB Flash Drive
If you are wanting to put your live Linux distribution on a USB flash drive, you can either follow the directions on the live Linux distribution’s website, or you can download Linux Live USB (LiLi). This is a software that runs in Windows, you open it, select the live Linux distribution file you downloaded and continue to follow on screen instructions, which will copy all the files to your USB flash drive and make it bootable.
Now after you have downloaded and installed your Linux distribution or live Linux distribution you can boot up your computer to your new Linux operating system and be secure from viruses, trojans, key loggers, and security holes so you can make online purchases and online banking with confidence.
The great thing about using a live Linux distribution for secure banking is you can use it on anyone’s computer. If you are using someone else’s computer, you have no idea what is on their computer, they may have all kinds of viruses on their computer as well, so don’t log in to your bank from a friend’s computer. Plug your USB flash drive into their computer, reboot into your live Linux distribution and feel confident no one will steal your information! Tell your friend’s about Linux as well. Help them setup a USB flash drive so they can use while doing their online banking or online purchases to keep them secure!