The freedom of the Internet and web works both ways. The same technology lets you explore web sites on the other side of the world allows anyone in the world to attack your system and steal from you.
In the real world people choose where to go and can avoid areas where the "criminal element" tend to hang out, or if in a less reputable neighborhood one can always be aware of the surroundings. On the Internet it isn't quite as intuitive, but there are steps that should be taken.
First everyone must take responsibility for them selves. Just like when we lock our doors and put safety belts on in the car.
As stated before hardware firewalls, software firewalls, and anti malware software should be installed and kept updated.
Mcafee Site Adviser works on both Internet Explorer and Firefox and can provide a warning when you wander into a "bad" site, and better yet will post warning on Google search listings to warn you prior to an actual visit.
Stay tuned for the next Cup Of Cocoa post about "sand boxing" to help contain malware. Until next time remember:
In view of all the deadly computer viruses that have been spreading lately, Weekend Update would like to remind you: when you link up to another computer, you're linking up to every computer that that computer has ever linked up to.
— Dennis Miller