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How to Protect Your Computer from Viruses

A computer virus is a software program created to invade your computer for the purpose of corrupting, encrypting or deleting files, folders and other data while also causing havoc with your operating system. A virus can be triggered simply by inadvertently opening an infected attachment from an email; downloading a corrupted file or harmful program from the Internet; or by visiting infected websites.

The first computer virus surfaced in the early 1970s. This early version was known as the “Creeper Virus.” A system that was infected with this virus would display the message “I’m the creeper; catch me if you can.” Hundreds of thousands of computer viruses have been created since then, and new ones are circulating every day.

The best way to protect your computer is to use an antivirus program to shield and scan your system for suspicious activity. HB Computers recommends using AVG, Malwarebytes and Adblock on your browser. They are free, and they work pretty well with Windows. Please note that Although Macs are less susceptible to viruses, they are still vulnerable to attacks.

In addition to protecting your computer with antivirus programs that are updated, we recommend that you follow the following basic precautionary practices.

  • Backup your data routinely.
  • Always think twice before opening email attachments or uploading disks unless they are from a trusted source.
  • Install a Firewall to prevent hackers from stealing personal information and causing other problems. Enable Windows Firewall and don’t disable it.
  • Be cautious before opening messages with subject lines like “Check this out” or attachments that use unfamiliar extensions like .vbs, .js, or even .exc. Safer extensions are .doc, .exe, .com, .xls, or .ppt.
  • Don’t click on Desktop icons that are suspicious.
  • Be careful on the Internet. Avoid pop-ups and free downloads. Viruses often hang out on gaming, gambling and social sites.
  • Scan Flash Drives and External Drives before opening them. Schedule monthly virus scans, and be sure to scan at other times if your system is running more slowly than usual or is acting unusual in any other way.
  • If your computer is clearly infected, shut it down and call us at 714-969-3001 for professional help in cleaning up the virus.

New viruses are created every day. Using safe Internet practices along with the latest in anti-virus protection is the only way to avoid costly and frustrating virus and malware problems that threaten the security of your data.

HB Computers can identify existing risks in your computer system and make recommendations for greater security. Call us today at 714-969-3001. We will offer you the very best price.