Computer viruses are here to stay, which means users need to know the best way to eradicate them the moment they attack. Like disease viruses, computer viruses evolve and get “smarter.” The many different kinds of computer viruses (such as worms, Trojans, spyware) are called malware: malicious software.
In general, security software comes with instructions for getting rid of or containing malware.
For Windows users, Microsoft provides tools that get rid of malware. Between your operating system and antivirus software, you will have the basic tools for fighting off most viruses.
Tips for Protecting Your Computer
- Every day, run a quick scan of all of your devices. But in addition, run a weekly deep scan. Either type of scan can be manually set up or set on an automatic timer (which is actually a lot better since you wont have to remember to do it).
- Your e-mail program should be set to alert you before you download any graphics or executable files. If you can, set your e-mail to display only text, and to alert you before loading any graphics or links.
- If you don’t recognize an e-mail sender, and the message includes a link, never click on the link. If the link has you curious, then visit the associated website via outside the e-mail, or, manually type the link’s web address into your browser. In fact, don’t even click on links in e-mails that are supposedly from a familiar sender. Fraudsters can make it look as though the sender is someone you know. Never mind how they do this; it happens.
You can outwit cybercriminals. You just have to be a little smarter than they are and never think, “It can’t happen to MY computer.” There’s nothing special about your computer that makes it intrinsically immune to cyber threats. You must be proactive and take measures to prevent malware attacks.
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