ZoneAlarm Firewall and Antivirus has been my favorite security solution for a long time now. The main reason I like this software is because of its low memory footprint. It keeps your PC protected from intrusions and malware infections without actually interfering with the system. The antivirus engine used by them is also very efficient and can block latest malware before it does any damage to the Windows PC.
One of the features that ZoneAlarm Firewall is that it can lock the HOSTS file. By locking the HOSTS file, it prevents any malicious programs from redirecting the domains to unwanted IP addresses. This technique is sometimes used by a number of malware to redirect the popular sites to phishing, scamming or otherwise dangerous sites.
Here is how we can lock or unlock the HOSTS file on Windows easily with the help of ZoneAlarm Firewall:
- Double-click on the ZoneAlarm Firewall icon in the notification area. This will open the ZoneAlarm monitor window. In this window, click on the View Details button under the Firewall section.
- Click on the Settings displayed next to the Basic Firewall section.
- On the screen that is displayed next, you can click on the Advanced Settings button.
- In the Firewall settings, select the checkbox Lock hosts file and then click on the OK button. This will lock the HOSTS file and nobody will be able to modify it.
- If you want to make the HOSTS file changeable/editable, then you can remove the checkbox in the previous step and then click on the OK button to save the settings.
- You can now close all the windows opened through this process.
Whenever you want to manually edit the HOSTS file, you can use the above process to unlock it. After editing is complete, you can once again lock the file to prevent unwanted changes.