News you can use

Andrew Davis Tucker/Staff
Five-year-old Kierston Lindsey, of Evans, cools off as she splashes around the fountain at Brookfield Park in Augusta.


COMPUTER CARE

Tens of thousands of consumers are unwitting accomplices of illegal spammers and at the mercy of identity thieves, warns the Federal Trade Commission.

These consumers' computers have been secretly hijacked by criminals who install spam-sending software and spyware on the computers when consumers open malicious e-mail attachments or visit a malicious Web site.

After gaining access, the criminals can track consumers' Internet surfing, steal personal information, and turn the computers into spam "zombies" that are part of a "botnet" made up of thousands of home computers through which spammers route e-mails.

In a new consumer alert, "Botnets and Hackers and Spam (Oh, My!)" available at www.OnGuardOnline.gov/botnet.html, the FTC urges consumers to secure their personal information and stop assisting spammers by:

- Using up-to-date anti-virus and anti-spyware software

- Setting operating system software to install security patches automatically

- Using a firewall to protect computers from hacking attacks while online

- Disconnecting from the Internet when away from the computer

- Downloading free software only from sites they know and trust

- Checking their "sent items" file or "outgoing" mailbox for messages they did not intend to send

More information is available through OnGuard Online.gov

Source: U.S. Federal Trade Commission


TODAY

MOVIE TUESDAY: Lady and the Tramp, 10 a.m., Appleby Branch Library, 2260 Walton Way; for ages 5 and older; (706) 736-6244

AUGUSTA ROSE SOCIETY: 7:30 p.m., First Baptist Church, 3500 Walton Way; (803) 502-0252, www.augustarosesociety.org

SWAMPMOBILE: 10 a.m., Diamond Lakes Branch Library, 101 Diamond Lakes Way, Hephzibah; hands-on educational program of the Southeastern Natural Sciences Center; ages 8-12; registration required; (706) 772-2432

SPIRITUALITY & RELIGIONS GROUP: 7 p.m., Borders Books Music & Cafe, 257 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway; (706) 737-6962

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR EXERCISE: 6-7 p.m., Walton Rehabilitation Hospital; (706) 823-5294

SINGLES FELLOWSHIP: 6:30 p.m., pool, pingpong and hanging out; 7 p.m., Bible study; First Baptist Church of North Augusta, 625 Georgia Ave.; meet in the administrative building; free; (803) 279-6370

NORTH AUGUSTA NETWORKERS: 11:30 a.m., North Augusta Community Center, 495 Brookside Ave.; (803) 442-3827

ABATSU: 10 a.m., Friedman Branch Library, 1447 Jackson Road; the African cultural performing arts group, featuring music, dance and stories; for all ages; (706) 736-6758

SPEECH AND HEARING SCREENINGS: Monday-Friday by appointment; University Hospital Speech and Hearing Center, 1430 Harper St., Suite C3 or Professional Center 2, Suite 102, 4321 University Parkway, Evans; $10 for children and adults; (706) 774-5777

WEDNESDAY

ART DISPLAY: North Augusta artist Martha McClard's artwork is on display through July; The Peach House Custom Picture Framing, Art Gallery and Gift Shop, 706 Edgefield Road; (803) 202-9191

AIKEN FOXHOUNDS: 7:05 p.m., School Tools Night at the University of South Carolina Aiken's Roberto Hernandez Stadium; with the United Way of Aiken County; bring a 24-count box of crayons for free admission; (803) 648-8331

FIRE SAFETY: 10 a.m., Jeff Maxwell Branch Library, 1927 Lumpkin Road; presented by the Augusta Fire Department; (706) 793-2020

GEORGIA-CAROLINA TOASTMASTERS: Noon, The Cotton Patch, 816 Cotton Lane; (803) 593-6605

AMBASSADORS MEETING: 8 a.m., North Augusta Chamber of Commerce, 302 Georgia Ave.; (803) 279-2323

THURSDAY

IMPERIAL THEATRE: Purple Rain; $2; happy hour 7 p.m., movie at 8 p.m.; Imperial Theatre, 745 Broad St.; imperialtheatre.com

MOVIE THURSDAY: Berenstain Bears Team Up, 10 a.m., Appleby Branch Library, 2260 Walton Way; ages 3-4; (706) 736-6244

SUPERHERO COLLAGE: 2 p.m., Diamond Lakes Branch Library, 101 Diamond Lakes Way, Hephzibah; create a collage using superhero comics; for teens; registration required; (706) 772-2432

MUSIC IN THE PARK: 7 p.m., Montana Skies will perform; Maude Edenfield Park, 400 Buena Vista Ave.; free; (803) 442-7588

FRENCH CLUB: 7 p.m., Borders Books Music & Cafe, 257 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway; (706) 737-6962

JOINT EFFORTS: 11-11:45 a.m., Augusta Orthopedic Clinic, 1521 Anthony Road; seminar on hip and knee pain, with tips for treatment, medicine, food, exercise; (706) 481-7604

FRIDAY

AUGUSTA SOUTHERN NATIONALS: 8 a.m. gates open, 9 a.m. races begin Friday-Sunday; Augusta Riverfront Marina; advance tickets: $15 for Saturday or Sunday, $18 for Saturday and Sunday; tickets at gate $25 each day; Friday, free admission; Patron Pass, $50, includes admission during the race to the air-conditioned Riverfront Pavilion, which has a bar and souvenir table; coolers, food and drinks cannot be brought on site; benefits local chapter of the Georgia Special Olympics; www.tixonline.com.

MIDNIGHT MAGIC COSTUME PARTY: 9 p.m., Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 1336 Augusta West Parkway; celebrating the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, on sale at midnight; prizes, photo opportunities, trivia, face painting and a potions demonstration by the Augusta State University chemistry department; (706) 860-2310

GRAND HALLOWS BALL: At about 9 p.m., Borders, 257 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway; final Harry Potter novel available (while supplies last) at midnight; Potter spelling bee, Great Snape Debate, dress in ball attire or as your favorite character for costume contest; (706) 737-6962

POTTER RELEASE PARTY: 9 p.m., Books-A-Million, 2834 Washington Road; face painting, wand making, costume contest, trivia; book on sale at midnight; (706) 481-9090

LUCKY STIFF: Dinner 7 p.m., show 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday and July 26-28; Fort Gordon Dinner Theatre, Third Avenue, Building 32100, Fort Gordon; www.fortgordon.com/theatre

JENNIFER BRANTLEY AND BAND: Still Water Tap Room, 974 Broad St.; (706) 826-9857

MOVIES UNDER THE STARS: Ice Age, Gates open at 6:30 p.m., movies start at dusk; Columbia County Amphitheater, 7022 Evans Town Center Blvd., Evans; $1 admission, benefits Medical College of Georgia Children's Medical Center; (706) 721-4004, www.mcghealth.org/kids

SATURDAY

CSRA ELECTRONICS RECYCLING DAY: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Fort Discovery, 1 Seventh St.; unacceptable items include TVs, electric ovens, microwave; (706) 821-0224

COMMUNITY PICNIC: Noon to 4 p.m., Dyess Park, 902 James Brown Blvd; food, drinks, games, door prizes, and live entertainment; attendees are urged to bring a school supply; www.augustamochasisters.com

FUN WITH ART: 2 p.m., 1927 Jeff Maxwell Branch Library, Lumpkin Road; bring colored markers and pencils; ages 10-16; registration required; (706) 793-2020

SUNDAY

CANDLELIGHT JAZZ SERIES: Bert Ligon Piano Trio, 8-9:30 p.m., Eighth Street bulkhead at Riverwalk Augusta; $6; (706) 821-1754

PATRICK BLANCHARD: 2 p.m., Morris Museum of Art, 1 10th St.; part of the Southern Roots Music Series; refreshments and conversation with the artist afterward; free; (706) 724-7501