This process was developed to help lockdown your Windows 7 system using increased protection setting with avast! and Malwarebytes:
1) Use avast! Internet Security / Premier (also applies to avast! Endpoint Protection Plus or Suite Plus ver. 9) to add the avast! anti-spam plugin for Outlook and the avast! Firewall and apply the lockdown procedure. These settings will absolutely make avast! much more aggressive (this is how Bitdefender is configured by default). Pages with PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs) like CNET’s Download.com will no longer load. The negative to Bitdefender is you cannot turn it off: http://www.advantage77.com/2014/05/01/how-to-configure-avast-2014-for-maximum-protection/
2) Install Malwarebytes and activate (don’t forget to remove Windows Defender): http://www.malwarebytes.org/mwb-download/
3) Install Malwarebytes anti-exploit (protects the fragile weak Java engine, IE, and your browsers): http://downloads.malwarebytes.org/file/mbae
4) Virtualize the Adobe Flash Engine: http://www.advantage77.com/2014/02/22/how-to-virtualize-flash-player-in-avast-endpoint-protection-version/
5) Make FULL image backups of each system to an external USB hard disk: http://www.advantage77.com/2014/04/24/how-to-make-an-acronis-full-image-backup-with-validation-step-by-step/ NOTE: Rebranded Acronis OEM is for free if you have a Seagate or Western digital External hard disk (Note that Acronis OEM version has no scheduling feature)
6) Depending upon the user’s risk factor, use Safe Zone for online banking, and virtualize the browsing functions (history is the best predictor of the future)
7) When using public or in-secure WiFi, use avast! SecureLine VPN for going online.
8) It is also critical that certain components are always updated to current versions. Those include Acrobat, Flash, Java, and Silverlight. The avast! software updater will assist you in this process, but it is manual. However, avast! Premier will automatically install this updates unattended, and therefore affords the best protection.
9) Google Chrome has internal applets that will emulate Java and Flash, and do not have the consistent vulnerabilities inherit to their counterparts. These emulators work with most websites and applications. To make these applets functional and secure, do NOT install Java or Flash, then install Google Chrome.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Advantage Micro Corporation
“At this point in time, the Internet should be regarded as an Enemy Weapons System!”