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How To Tighten Up Windows Security

October 25th, 2012 by - 6,930 views

In the previous Security article from GoGrid, we outlined 5 Steps to enhance your security on Microsoft Windows. This article walks you through some of these steps.

vault

Step 1: Patch your system

The following steps apply to Microsoft Windows 2008 OS and Microsoft applications:

  1. Select the Start button
  2. Type “windows update” in the search area and press the Enter button.
    windows-update
  3. You should see the following screen:
    updates-available
  4. Select the Check for Updates option, which will connect to Microsoft to determine if your system requires security updates.
    check-for-updates
  5. Install security updates by pressing the Install updates button.
    Note: You may need to reboot your system immediately after you’ve applied the security updates.
    install-updates

Step 2: Rename the administrator account

The following steps apply to Microsoft Windows 2008:

  1. Select the Start button
  2. Type “lusrmgr.msc” in the Search area and press the Enter button.
    user-manager-launch
  3. You should see the following screen:
    user-manager
  4. Select the Users option.
    select-users
  5. Now select the Administrator account, press the right button on your mouse, and select the Rename option.
  6. When you rename the administrator account, choose a non-dictionary account name such as “4rfv%TGB,” and then press the Enter button.

Step 3: Change your Windows default administrator account password

  1. While still on the Local Users screen, select the renamed administrator account, press the right button on your mouse, and select Set Password.
  2. Enter a new password that is:
    1. At least 12 characters long
    2. A combination of alphanumeric characters, upper and lowercase letters, and non-alphabetic symbols such as @# %.
  3. Congratulations, you’re finished! Close your Local Users screen.

As an ongoing effort to make cloud computing safer and better, GoGrid will be providing several primers on security. Previous article: “Security Basics: 5 Steps to Tighten Security for Microsoft Windows.”

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Mario Duarte

Director of Security at GoGrid
Mario is GoGrid's Director of Security responsible for all security-related activities. He has 14 years of experience as a security professional working in the retail, health care, and financial sectors. He has built and managed security teams, developed and implemented security programs, and managed PCI and HIPAA compliance initiatives for medium and large organizations.

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