When it comes to computer security, the first thing you must do is to protect your computer from Internet threats. Internet threats are on a rise and if you’re not aware of safe Internet practices, your computer might be affected by trojan horses, keyloggers and other malware in no time.
There are several software present on the Internet that claim to be clean and safe to use program/game, but in reality comprises the security of your system. Therefore it’s important not just to use Internet with more caution but also regularly check your computer for malware, spyware and viruses.
First I’ll talk about Internet practices that you should follow.
Visit trustworthy sites only
Search engines can sometimes lead you to a website that hosts malware. If you visit that website, your computer could get affected. There’s a simple fix though, either use Chrome browser or install WoT (Web of Trust) add-on to Firefox. WoT would display trustworthiness of a website in the search results and Chrome by default warns you if you visit a website that either hosts malware or has a history of hosting malware.
Install from real sources
Free software is great but not all free softwares/games are good for your computer’s health. They may seem like an innocent computer program but could install malware on your system. If you want free software, you can use CNET downloads or Filehippo.
Avoid pirated content
Websites hosting pirated content can’t make revenue online advertising because most advertising networks don’t support piracy, hence they are forced to switch to revenue models where you pay by giving advertisers access to your computer. You may find “Download Now” or “Get faster download speeds” displayed on several free music sites, if you’d install any of this software, it would compromise your computer.
Now that you know how you can prevent your computer from getting affected, here how to remove viruses if your computer has any.
Get a new operating system
If you have an old school OS like Windows XP, you should spend some bucks to get Windows 7 or Windows 8. We generally decide to buy a new operating system based on its face value i.e. Whether it looks good, but that’s not the only use of an operating system. Microsoft’s Windows 7 and 8 operating system have features like Address Space Layout Randomization and Data Execution Prevention, which prevents unauthorized scripts from writing to system files.
Install OS updates
Worst viruses are those that gain access to your computer’s root directory, because they can make your computer non-functional and delete important information. Since OS companies know the importance to securing system files from external threats, they continuously release updates. You shouldn’t put off updating your OS to some other day — whenever there’s an update available, install it.
Get an antivirus software
Antivirus software combined with the Internet Security suite can protect your computer from majority of threats. Although no antivirus program guarantees total protection, there is no reason why you shouldn’t install one. Antivirus software adds a layer of protection between your computer and the world and in several cases it has proved to be beneficial.
Get a free online virus scan to check if your computer is at risk.