November 01, 2010, 11:12 AM — Good citizens of technological America, this story is not for you.
Today we honor the louts, the Luddites, and the lazy. Everyone has a little techie vice--raise your hand if you have ever used "password" as a password--but with this outing we're digging a little deeper, calling out the really bad habits that can cause permanent damage to your high-tech psyche.
Without further ado, it's time to get our hands dirty. We present to you our 25 worst high-tech habits.
1. Avoiding Security Software
So you thought you could get by without antimalware utilities, just by being mindful of what Web links you click and what e-mail you open. How's that working out for ya? Use something--anything--to protect your PC from the bad guys, who are happy to have you as a target. You can even start with free antivirus software.
2. Failing to Back Up Your Computer
The funny thing about people who admit that they don't back up is that they always preface it by saying, "I know it's bad, but..." Listen: All hard drives crash eventually. All of them. Yours will, too. For help, see our simple guide to getting started with backup.
3. Neglecting Offsite Backup
A thief breaks into your apartment and steals your laptop. No problem: You just backed it up last night. Oh, wait, he stole your backup drive too, because it was sitting right next to the laptop. Store your data in multiple locations, with automatic backups scheduled for hard drives kept away from your PC--and make a backup plan to prepare for worst-case scenarios.
Tempting as the offer may be, put spammers out of business by ignoring their e-mail.
4. Replying to Spam