I would hope that everyone on Orchid has had the sense to install
and use good anti-virus software and preferably a firewall too.
Here are a couple of other things you can do to help keep the
unwanted at bay:
Download some free spyware from the internet (Ad-Aware is a good
one) and run it regularly. This will identify any data miners on your
machine and allow you to get rid of them. The reference file is
updated regularly, and you can download the latest version whenever
Check how you have your cookie permissions set up.
'First-party' cookies are generally OK, as they are the ones that
the website you are looking at puts onto your machine, usually to
keep track of things like your name when you are shopping on the
Internet. Some shopping sites will not work if you do not allow First
'Third-party' cookies are usually a no-no. This is how a great many
data miners get on to your machine. Either block them completely, or
ask to be prompted when they appear. At that point you can allow the
cookie, block it or opt to block all cookies from the originator.
This is what I do with third-party cookies, and the number that
appear decreased rapidly from the day I started.
'Persistent' cookies are ones that stay on your machine even after
you have left the site. These are generally the ones that hold
personal such as your name and address, your email
address etc. which is you enter when registering with a
site, or when you make a purchase. It is up to you whether you let
them stay, but don't allow persistent cookies if you are
uncomfortable with the idea.
'Session' cookies (sometimes not referred to as cookies) are
transitory. When you enter a website, you are starting s new
'session' for that site. Session cookies are used to pass information
between pages as long as you are on the site. When you leave the
site, they disappear. As a rule you should allow Session cookies, as
they are widely used and are not actually held on your machine, but
on the web server along with the site itself.
I hope this has been of help to some of you