11 Tips to Protect Your Computer from Viruses
Computer viruses are programmed to replicate themselves and maliciously reconfigure the computer’s functionality. Some viruses destroy data and attack the operating system, thereby disabling it. Other viruses create passwords in documents making it impossible to access them.
To keep your documents and passwords safe, you must use the safest ways to keep the virus away from your computer. Using a strong antivirus will help, but the method needs more actions like secure passwords, updating, and scanning often.
Uninstall unused programs and files
Sometimes viruses do not attack your computer immediately after they find their way in. They hide and wait for an opportune time when the codes in the virus can find a favorable file or program to execute itself. If you have too many unused files and programs on your computer, you create a better environment for the viruses to execute themselves.
However, some applications are both useful and harmful to your computer. Taking an example of McAfee antivirus, it’s very helpful when you install it and does its work well.
But once its license expires, it becomes troublesome acting like a virus. This is the time when you see many users posting the message “McAfee won’t uninstall” because of frustration. You may need an expert to remove it or another application or tool that can help you uninstall it completely and not just disable it.
Update your operating system routinely
Developers of operating systems know the threat caused by viruses. They keep studying the codes of the viruses and update the operating system to help fight the viruses, although new ones keep developing. Most of the newer operating systems have an inbuilt antivirus and if you keep it up to date, it can help keep viruses away.
Choose a good antivirus
Some antiviruses are reputable and their developers keep updating them often. They study the behavior of every new virus and update the antivirus to fight it. It might be wise to review several antivirus products before you buy any.
Use complex passwords
Some viruses double as malware and can steal your passwords which compromises your data. Most computer users fear forgetting passwords and therefore create simple ones that can be guessed or easily cracked. Complex passwords are hard to crack.
Consider document backup
You may have taken every necessary precaution, but sometimes some viruses are too strong and overcome the protection applications. To avoid losing your data, consider creating a backup system. You can use an external disk like a memory card, hard disk, flash disk, online and so on.
Use genuine software
Illegal software can have malware and viruses in its codes. Some users take an original copy of the software and crack it to distribute or sell to unsuspecting users. If the security license of the software is cracked, it can no longer be safe on your computer.
Scan your computer often
Most antivirus applications run automatically in the background and fight any attacks. Some attacks may not present as a virus initially and they can escape the antivirus. They can be detected if you scan your computer often to keep it clean and safe.
Do not open suspicious links
Most people interested in stealing your data will send an email with a link to a website that will install a virus on your computer. These are phishing emails that seek to steal passwords and important data. If you are not sure about the source of the email, do not rush to open the link. Most suspicious emails are sent to the spam folder to warn you to be cautious when opening them.
Use an ad-block
Not all online ads are bad but some are malicious and are posted so that after you click on them, they lead to a phishing website. Once you are on the website, viruses can easily execute and install malware on your computer. You can avoid bad ads by installing an ad-block.
Understand when there is a threat
It might be hard to know if your computer is infected by viruses unless the infection is adverse. However, some signs will help you know if you are safe or not. Your computer can become slow to execute or some files fail to open. The system might keep warning you have a virus attack and some files can change their format.
Connect to a secure network
Anytime you connect to the internet, you login to a system that is being used by millions of other people around the world. As a result, malicious people can easily access your computer from wherever they are and steal your data. For your safety, always connect through SSL or TLS to make it harder for another person to access your system.
A virus attack can be devastating, leaving your computer slow or without important files and programs. You can lose your precious passwords and some unauthorized person can access your credit card or online wallets. Keeping yourself safe by taking precautions seriously is the best remedy. Use antivirus, keep your system updated, and always have a backup plan to ensure safety.