Protection of computers and hardware is very important due to financial implications, from which the school would detriment from, as they would have to spend money to buy more computer equipment of hardware. Another reason why protection of computers is important is because if something of intensive value such as a CPU gets stolen in some way or breaks down, then the school would have to pay a tremendous amount of money to buy the CPU. If more than one CPU got broken down, then more money would be used. This would also waste the school’s valuable time and effort. In conclusion, protection of computers and hardware save the school’s money, time and effort.
Task 17.2: - Peter Evans is installing a local area network in his suite of four offices on a small business park. He only has a limited amount to spend on security for his computers and other hardware. Look at the information given to you, thinking about his circumstances, list the four most necessary security measures you think he should choose to install. Give reasons for each of your choices.
The four most necessary security measures I think Peter Evans should choose to install are as follows: -
- To ensure that the whole building is secure and has an intruder alarm system and if necessary a closed circuit television system (CCTV) can be installed too. This is because it will ensure that no unauthorised personnel will enter the building without being detected. It will also prevent any thefts from taking place as the person stealing the equipment would be detected or recorded on the CCTV.
- Having a security alarm in the computer rooms and a keypad lock on the door opening to the room, which only authorised personnel would be able to open. This is important because it will again stop any person from breaking into the room, and would therefore prevent computer hardware thefts.
- By using independent alarms on all hardware present, which remain in operation when the main security alarms are inactive, the hardware would be very safe due to the fact that the alarm would go off if a person tried to steal a particular hardware. This would also give a strong secure atmosphere where personnel wouldn’t feel intimidated about thieves.
- Marking all equipment with ultra-violet pens and making an inventory of all the serial numbers appointed to the different pieces of equipment present in each room or section. This is important because if a piece of equipment is stolen and recovered, it can be traced back to its owner and can go back to its original location.
Task 17.3: - Explain how accidental loss of computer equipment can happen and in your own words explain what back-up of data can be done.
Data is very valuable to an organisation and, similar to computer hardware, is at risk from accidental loss or deliberate damage and theft. Accidental loss can be caused by a number of ways, such as: -
- The document is accidentally deleted of unintentionally written over.
- The computer breaks down or the power fails, and if the user has not saved the document, data can result in being lost.
- The file or disk becomes corrupted, for example, by scratches on the disk or a faulty disk drive.
- The file is destroyed be a fire or in a flood.
Everyone knows hoe frustrating it can be to loose important work, but the loss of data can be as serious to an organisation as loosing its stock. Therefore, it is very important to have more than one saved copy of all data by producing a back-up copy, which can be used if anything happens to the copy in use. This can either be done automatically by the computer or manually by creating a copy on some form of minor storage, e.g. floppy disks.
Secondary storage is a back-up copy of data that is produced on a secondary storage system for example, floppy disks, CD-ROM or a magnetic tape streamer. All theses storage systems involve transferring copies of data files onto another kind of storage medium so that they cab be easily accessible and stored away from the original. Storing the back-up copy in another office would be a good idea because if there is a fire or flood in one office, there might not be one in the other one.
For creating back-ups automatically, computer programmes can be used as they give the opportunity to create a backup file that ends in .BAK, which the person would be able to recognise as a backup. When a document is saved, the old version of the document is not lost, but only renamed by replacing the ending of the old version from .DOC to .BAK, which ensures that if the old version of the document gets misplaced, then the back-up file can be used instead.
Another automatic back-up facility is when the program is set to do an automatic save every few minutes. This means that if the user has not saved the document for a while, the computer would save it automatically according to the timer it is put on. If in the event of a power failure, only the work done since the last automatic save would be lost.
Task 17.4: - You are a systems manager in a large multinational company with branches worldwide. You receive information from Microsoft about a new, extremely dangerous virus. What actions should you take to try to prevent the virus from affecting your system?
In order to prevent the extremely harmful virus from affecting my system, I should take the following precautions. I should: -
- Use anti-virus software, which can detect and remove all known viruses. This needs to be updated regularly so that newly developed viruses can be accounted for.
- Avoid using unregistered software, which is distributed in magazines, unless I am sure about the origin. This would ensure any unwanted viruses from spreading into my system.
- Write-protect all my programmes so that viruses cannot change them in any way.
- Make regular back=up files. This is to ensure that if a virus does wipe out or erase the data stored, the files can be recovered.
- Never open a file attachment in an email without scanning for viruses first, whether it would be from someone I know or not.
- Not download software from bulletin boards unless I am confident that it came from a reliable origin.
- Make sure that all computer users are aware of the dangers of viruses and also about different ways to prevent the system from being affected.
Task: - 10 revision multiple-choice questions.
- To provide a security watch on an organisation’s premises, the company can install CCTV.
- To prevent unauthorised entry to computer rooms a keypad could be fitted to the door.
- Marking equipment with an ultra-violet pen helps to trace stolen equipment back to the owner.
- A back-up of data stored in a computer can be made using a magnetic tape streamer.
- An automatic back-up file will have a name ending with .bak.
- A harmful program that copies itself onto your computer without you intending it to is a virus.
- To make sure that viruses cannot change them, all software programmes should be write-protected.
- One way to transmit viruses is by the use of floppy disks that are infected.
- A hacker is someone who gains unauthorised access to data held in a computer system.
- To protect sensitive data, files can be encrypted so that the data is scrambled and unreadable.