What Is The Best Way To Prevent Viruses
As a computer repair shop, I've seen a fair share of viruses. And when I thought about the best way to protect yourself from malware and viruses in general, the answer was pretty one-sided. So what is the best way to prevent viruses? Common sense.
More than anything else, the best way to protect yourself online is by using common sense. Be careful what you’re clicking on, what attachments you’re opening, what you’re downloading, and who you’re trusting. Common sense is a really ambiguous term though, so here are some specific tips to help you out.
Browse with caution
Browsing with caution doesn’t necessarily mean being afraid to open up Yahoo or CNBC, but if you think a website or email looks sketchy or out-of-place, maybe skip it. Phishing can take many forms: a Nigerian prince asking for money is obviously a ploy, but “Well’s Fargo” sending you an email saying you need to verify your information in the next 24 hours or they’ll close your account isn’t quite as obvious. When in doubt, look for signs to verify the email is legitimate, like a phone number or contact information at the bottom of the email and verify that it matches with Wells Fargo’s actual number.
Make sure you’re on the right website
Take a quick look at a website’s domain to make sure you’re on the correct site before you give personal information or download anything. If you’re going to download Microsoft Office, make sure you’re on Microsoft.com, not Microsftoff.com. It’s a small detail, but that’s exactly how people get malicious software.
Check for an SSL certificate
Another security measure on websites is having an SSL Certificate (Secure Sockets Layer). That’s the little lock next to the website’s name:
It essentially just means that any information sent to or from that website will be encrypted and so much harder to use for any 3rd party. TECCS Computer Repairs is looking at making this change, however any communication sent to us online is still secure.
Don’t click sketchy ads
If you’re going to websites to illegally stream your favorite shows or sports, you should probably be cautious, use an adblocker, and don’t click the ads you DO see on the page. But if you’re the type of person to go to those websites, you probably know that already.
When all else fails: use your common sense. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
Even more protection: monthly Malware Scans
If you really want to double down and cover all of your bases, you can use a malware scanner once a month (or once every few months) to make sure that you haven’t picked up any malicious software. Malwarebytes has developed a good reputation for routine malware scanning, and they have both free and paid versions.
If you go with a scanner that is manually controlled – which we would recommend since you are already running Windows Defender in the background – just remember to use it. It’s not helping you if the icon is just sitting on your desktop. Make sure to run it now and then!
Use an internet security package that is kept up to date
This will help protect you from known threats out there aswell as have real-time scanning.
These suggestions are for the average user for their personal computer. Large and medium businesses are obviously at more risk and will need more layers of protection for their network, because they have more to lose and attackers have more to gain. Browse with common sense and stick with the basics.
Worst case scenario: a virus removal from a computer repair shop just like ours is always an option. If that doesn’t do the trick, a system reinstall will cure your sick computer and have it back up to speed in no time.