Need to Know: Updating Your Computer

It seems like in today’s society, we are all about the latest and greatest. We are always trying to improve what we already have. We have magazines that tell us what styles are cool. We have commercials that tell us how we should think. We want to be cool and up to date. What can you do to update your computer?

Some systems have some ways to update your computer automatically. This will install all the right software you need to fix, scan, and keep your computer running as smooth as possible. This is a first good line of defense. You should also have anti-spyware programs, anti-virus programs and a good firewall. You should always go for the newest and greatest software available. The saying, “some things never change with time”, doesn’t apply to the cyber world. The amount of viruses is going up every year. There is an estimated 10,000 viruses to whicvh PCs are vulnerable. Spyware was introduced into the computer world around 2005. The risk of infection seems to be growing more and more every year. So having updated programs is essential to having a good defense against infection.

What are we up against? Computer viruses are something to take seriously. You may have heard of these horrible things, but not know what they are. A computer virus is defined as a computer program secretively installed on your computer for the purpose of infecting it. Many people’s computers are infected with a virus, and may not even know about it. Some common signs of infection are slow Internet connection, slow booting up, memory loss, and computer functions may not work the way they are supposed to. Computer viruses can be spread through external ports, such as USB ports, flash disks, and floppy disks.

Your computer will usually ask you to scan and fix your devices, so it can detect any possible threat. Some deadly viruses can be stored on a flash drive, and if you don’t detect and remove it, it will replicate itself and infect your computer. Viruses are also spread throughout the Internet, email, and downloads. When downloading something, always check the size of the download, if it is abnormally big, then it may contain a virus. Always save them on to your computer as opposed to just running them. This allows your computer to scan and see if the thing you downloaded is a potential threat. There are different kinds of ant-virus protection, but the most popular one has a list of all the known viruses and virus behaviors. It searches your computer for them and it cleans them all out.

You also want to update your computer to fight against spyware. Spyware is similar to a computer virus, but spyware takes partial control of your system. This allows usage of your Internet, access to your files, and even more downloading of additional spyware. AOL did a survey and found out that about 60% of people that have computers have spyware. About 90% of those people didn’t even know that they had spyware on their computer. When planning to update your system, beware of phony anti-spyware. Phony spyware can result in your computer being infected with even more spyware.

So when planning to update your computer for online safety, make sure you have all the latest and greatest programs. Make sure you have a good firewall, good anti-spyware software, and good anti-virus protection. These lines of defense might not make you invincible, but they will help.

Cite This Page

Feldman, Barbara. "Need to Know: Updating Your Computer." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 24 Mar. 2008. Web. 1 Sep. 2015. < >.

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By . Originally published March 24, 2008. Last modified March 24, 2008.