Hey everyone, welcome back! It is hard to believe that we are already eight days into the new year, the time is just going by so quickly, that being said the show must go on! Let me ask you a question, did you purchase a new computer over the holiday season, perhaps you wanted to get something faster so you can run your business more effectually, or maybe you have kids that went back to college and needed a new computer for the upcoming college years?

In today’s blog post I am going to share with you seven highly effective strategies that you can implement every day to help prevent your computer from being infected with some type of computer virus. Did you know that your computer can be infected and you may not even realize it? it is very important that you try to stay protected at all times. We see a fair amount of computers come in that are infected at O’Fallon Computers, some are smaller problems some are bigger and require more attention. I want you to understand that just because you have antivirus protection this does not mean you are protected, also understand that when you purchase a computer will find antivirus protection in your programs list, the kind is determined by the manufacturer of the computer, this is a FREE version it is not a paid version. It is just something to get you started, most programs installed typically have a 14 or 30-day free trial then after the trial expires you need to purchase the license to get the most recent updates

We encourage our customers to always buy something that is paid version as you get more features and better protection overall.  One of the most common questions we get is “What is the best antivirus program to purchase for my computer”? The answer to this question is there is no best program, the key to not getting infected with a computer virus is to have everything on the computer you need, and understanding safe browsing habits while on the internet.  We recommend purchasing Norton, you can make your purchase from the official Norton website here

Now let’s find out what you can do to keep your computer from getting infected!

1) Having all the necessary programs installed – Weather you are a home user or you have a business, be sure that you have all the necessary programs installed on your computer that you need, for example, if you deal a lot with PDF files then you would want to make sure you have Adobe reader installed, most people do some type of word processing, so you want to make sure you have Microsoft Office installed, this can cut down the risk of an infection significantly. If you have any questions feel free to give us a call, we will be more than happy to make sure you are set up for success!

2) Paid Antivirus – This has a few different components to it, as I mentioned above always make sure you use a paid version of your antivirus.  This will give you the most recent updates.  Also be sure that you are scanning your computer regularly for threats ( once a week is ideal). In the settings you can set your antivirus to run scans at a certain day or a time, so you have round-the-clock protection.  Before you scan, take a moment to update your Virus database definitions – this keeps you updated as to what’s new as far as a threat goes.  If you are using Norton, this is called “Live Update”  Check out this blog post on running Live Update.

3) Monitoring emails – This is a big one, this is where we see the biggest problem with infections.  This has two parts. I’m sure this happened to you at some point: you received an email but you never signed for anything at all.  This is very popular and a great way to get infected. If you get an email from someone that does not look trusted simply delete the email, DO NOT CLICK the link, you are at risk of too things happening the first being you don’t know where the link goes, and the second the person sending the email can track if you open the email if they see you are “active” they will continue to send you information, about whatever they are trying todo. it really is best practice if you just delete the email to avoid further complications.

4) Stop searching the Internet for programs to install – Back to the first step about having all the programs you need installed, let’s say you received an email a PDF from your child’s school, and you didn’t Adobe Reader installed, please do not go to google and type in “Download adobe reader” you could end up a bug of some sort due to bad search engine results.  Always look at the actual website address of the link (or ad in many cases) before clicking search results!

5) Bookmarking website – Now you may be asking your self how does bookmark a site keep me from getting a virus on my computer, let me explain a lot of people out of habit will simply type the web address so like www.google.com, if you take the time to bookmark your favorite sites this minimize the infection risk, I am sure at some point you have been searching for something and you got a pop up saying call Microsoft for immediate support, well that is a website and you need a domain to build a website, the “bad people” will purchase a domain that looks like the spelling of familiar domain-like Facebook, they might a domain and spell that domain faceboook with an extra “O” if you land on that page you when see the popup. Book mark your sites it really is a helpful way to stay protected.

6) Facebook chain messages – I am just going to come out and say it, these are the dumbest things ever, clicking on these can lead to so many different problems ranging from being kicked out of your account to infections on the computer, when I get these I block them, that is just what I do, I strongly encourage you to just stay away from these as a whole!

7) Remote support – The final thing I want to share with you is remote support NEVER give someone access to your computer NEVER, this is can compromise your back accounts your computer, your life a few tips to remember, Microsoft will never call you or ask you for a password, we have been seeing this happen with amazon a lot if you get an email from amazon saying you made a purchase and you did not make the purchase, report the abuse to amazon so they can help stop the attacks use this link to report items to amazon. 

If you feel that you have been infected with a virus or your computer has been compromised, please feel free to contact us, so that we can better assist you! Remember if you do fall victim to calling someone and they want to take over your computer be sure that if you give ANY Credit card information out to call the bank as soon as and take the necessary precautions as needed.

Thank you for reading! Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!

O’Fallon Computers offers virus removal in O’Fallon MO  (636) 980-6472 you can send us a message here.

 

 

 

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