Viruses are used by hackers and other intruders to try to compromise the security level of your computer system so that it is easier to gain access to your computer’s files. Some viruses are just intended to eat away at your system rendering your computer useless over time, while other viruses are used as tools to steal information including identity theft. Some viruses are easy to avoid while others are much more difficult to detect. Protecting your computer against viruses is necessary if you want to avoid costly repairs and the invasion of privacy. Here are some tips to keep in mind to protect your computer from viruses:
Anti-virus software — Anti-virus software is easy to obtain and an absolute must when it comes to security features. Anti-virus software is often available for download free of charge and updates are usually also available free of charge. Anti-virus software is great for protecting against those viruses that you may never have seen coming. In today’s world of technological geniuses it would be impossible to be aware of every possible computer virus in all of their forms. Fortunately with anti-virus software you can relax a little and focus more on avoiding the more obvious viruses.
Don’t open unfamiliar e-mails — One of the most popular methods of distributing viruses is via e-mail. E-mails from senders that you are unfamiliar with that have enticing subjects lines such as “you are a winner” or “claim your prize” are some of the most popular virus distribution methods out there. Following a simple rule is all that it takes to avoid these types of viruses; don’t open unfamiliar e-mails. Avoid being tricked into opening a message and allowing a virus to attack your computer. If you have anti-virus software there is a good chance that you will even get a warning box telling you that a message like this could be unsafe and to proceed with caution. Do not ignore these warnings and be smart about controlling your curiosity.
Avoid downloading programs from unfamiliar sites — Opening an e-mail from an unknown sender may be an easy mistake to make if you do not know about the warning signs of a potential virus. But if you download programs from unfamiliar sites or websites with ill repute, you may be asking for a virus. Where other methods by hackers involve trying to get the virus to you, this method leads you straight to the virus and before you know it you can become an unwilling participant in the implantation of a virus on your own computer. Again, use caution and do not ignore the warning messages that you will likely receive before downloading anything online.
Don’t keep sensitive info on your computer — Although it is not the most common scenario, sometimes individuals are targeted by those wanting to implant a virus because of the type of information that is known to be on their computer. Businesses and individuals with computers used for the handling of large amounts of money or sensitive information are just some examples of probable targets. Simply finding alternate methods for information storage in locations other than on your computer can protect you not only from the devastating effects of a virus but it can help to deter the potential for an attack.
Firewall — Firewalls and anti-virus software work hand-in-hand to ensure that your computer’s level of security remains as strong as possible. Like anti-virus software, firewall protection and updates are available for download for free so there is no excuse for not having at least a basic level of protection. Protecting your computer from viruses will take some work, but any victim of a virus will tell you that it is well worth the effort to avoid getting a computer virus.