AOL is letting users test a security tool that analyses their PCs and home networks and alerts them about gaps that could leave them vulnerable to viruses, worms, spyware and other threats.
The tool, called Active Security Monitor, evaluates the security software and settings on users' PCs. Based on that, it delivers an overall security rating, along with recommendations for improvement, AOL said last week on its Beta Central site.
AOL developed Active Security Monitor because to properly protect a PC, users need to install, configure and maintain a variety of software programs, such as firewalls, antivirus and antispyware applications, and it can be complicated to keep track of all of them.
"If you don't have the right programs installed and correctly configured, your system is vulnerable to attack. This is where Active Security Monitor comes in," reads the Frequently Asked Questions web page of the Active Security Monitor beta program.
Among other things, Active Security Monitor checks antivirus and antispyware programs, firewalls, operating system updates and web browser settings.
Active Security Monitor can be downloaded for free here.
For more information on network monitoring, our sister site Techworld has a comprehensive network monitoring resource page.