Excellent article I came across on securing Windows XP machines:

There are a few items I'd change [namely the anti-spyware software used (Ad-Aware isn't as effective as it used to be)], but overall, it's a very fine piece detailing the steps a user can take towards online security.

One ironic thing to me, 6 pages of somewhat lengthy steps shown... Man that's a lot of stuff you may want to do to be secure! Shows me something's inherently wrong - Windows, and it's default settings, are too weak at protecting the average user -AND- and hackers / bad guys are enjoying WAY TOO MUCH FREEDOM romping about the globe doing bad deeds.