What is the best Windows 7 security configuration

Hi, I want to have a very secure system and I want to know if there is something else I can add to my configuration setup:
  1. Windows 7  SP1 x64
  2. Microsoft Security Essentials
  3. Auto-update: ON
  4. Firewall: ON
  5. User Account Control (UAC): max settings & standard account
  6. Applocker
  7. DEP & SEHOP enabled
  8. Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 2.0.0.3
  • Data Execution Prevention (Opt Out);
  • Structured Exception Handling Overwrite Protection (Opt Out);
  • Address Space Layout Randomization (Opt In);
Can I add something else? Specially in windows 7 configuration. Thanks
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Answer
Answer
Hi,

Make sure your router has a built-in Firewall which most do. The Hardware Firewall
and Windows Firewall can be used simultaneously.

Here is what I use and recommend : (These are all Free versions and very effective.) 

Avast and Prevx have proven extremely reliable and compatible with everything I have
thrown at them. Microsoft Security Essentials and Prevx have also proven to be very
reliable and compatible. Use MSE and Prevx or Avast and Prevx however not all 3.

Avast Home Free - stop any shields you do not need except leave Standard, Web, and
Network running.

Prevx - Home - Free

Windows Firewall

Windows Defender (not needed if using MSE)

IE - Protected Mode

IE 8 - SmartScreen Filter ON  (IE 7 Phishing Filter)

I also have IE to always start with InPrivate Filter active if IE 8.
(You occasionally have to turn it temporarily off with the little Icon on LEFT of the + bottom
right of IE)

Two versions of Avast are available 6.x and 4.8x

Avast 6.x - Home - Free - Stop the Shields you do not use (except File, Web, Network, &
Behavior) - double click the Orange Icon in Notification Area - Real Time Shields - click the
Shield you want to stop - STOP. To stop the Orange Icon from showing an error indicator -
click the Orange Icon - Upper Right - Settings - click Status Bar - uncheck the Shields you
disabled - click OK
http://www.avast.com/free-antivirus-download

Avast 4.8x - Home - Free - stop any shields you do not need except leave Standard, Web,
and Network running. (Double Click Blue icon - details next to OK. - upper left Shields -
Terminate those you do not use.)
http://www.avast.com/free-antivirus-download#tab4

Or use Microsoft Security Essentials - Free
http://www.microsoft.com/Security_Essentials/

Prevx works well along side Avast or MSE

Prevx - Home - Free small, fast, exceptional CLOUD protection, works with other security
programs. This is a scanner only, VERY EFFECTIVE, if it finds something come back here
or use Google to see how to remove. 
http://www.prevx.com/   <-- information
http://info.prevx.com/downloadcsi.asp  <-- download

PCmag - Prevx - Editor'a Choice
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2346862,00.asp

Also get Malwarebytes - free - use as scanner only. If you ever suspect malware, and that
would be unsual with Avast and Prevx running except for an occasional low level cookie
(no big deal), UPDATE it and then run it as a scanner. I have many scanners and they
never find anything of note since I started using this setup.

http://www.malwarebytes.org/products/malwarebytes_free

======================================================================

Check with your router's maker and their forums as they usually have excellent info.

Best to use WPA/WPA2 security if available and you can hide the SSID which will help
prevent others from seeing the network (note on some older routers hiding the SSID
causes connection issues and if they find out the name it no longer helps).

General Wireless Network Security Recommendations for Home Users
http://theillustratednetwork.mvps.org/LAN/SoHoWirelessSecurity.html

Introduction to Wireless Network Security
http://netsecurity.about.com/od/hackertools/a/aa072004b.htm

10 Tips for Wireless Home Network Security
http://compnetworking.about.com/od/wirelesssecurity/tp/wifisecurity.htm

Securing your Wireless Network
http://www.practicallynetworked.com/support/wireless_secure.htm

How To Secure Your Linksys Wireless Router - Similar can be used for other routers 
http://www.pctipguys.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=57&Itemid=36

What are the different wireless network security methods?
http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/en-US/help/b385cc8a-af25-489e-a82e-decf6df26b681033.mspx#EZB

----------------------

These items that Vincenzo mentioned for XP also apply to Windows 7 however it does
provide increased security.

Vincent's Blog
http://blogs.dotnethell.it/vincent/Checking-forHelp-with-Spyware-Malware-and-Hijackware__4820.aspx

Internet Explorer 8 - Security
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/internet-explorer/default.aspx

Security checklist for Windows 7
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/Security-checklist-for-Windows-7

Windows 7 Security Enhancements
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd560691.aspx

TechNet - Security Center
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/security/default.aspx

Windows 7 Security Primer (Part 1) (see links in article to Part 2 and 3)
http://www.windowsecurity.com/articles/Windows-7-Security-Primer-Part1.html

Windows 7 Security Enhancements
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd548337(WS.10).aspx

Steve Riley discusses Windows 7 Security Features at RSA
http://www.microsoft.com/video/en/us/details/3bce5c98-ce93-46b5-9a1a-3a2914059ad1

Windows 7: Explore new and improved security features
http://www.microsoft.com/security/products/windows7.aspx

Windows 7: Security and Protection
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd571075(WS.10).aspx

A Guide to Windows 7 Security
http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/171979/a_guide_to_windows_7_security.html

Hope this helps.


Rob Brown - Microsoft MVP <- profile - Windows Expert - Consumer : Bicycle <- Mark Twain said it right.

Rob Brown - past Microsoft MVP - Windows Insider MVP 2016 - 2021
Microsoft MVP Windows and Devices for IT 2009 - 2020

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Last updated January 31, 2020 Views 1,008 Applies to: