Getting a virus can devastate your entire computer system and all of your data could be lost, corrupted, or hacked. Therefore, you need to take steps to protect your computer from viruses that can be acquired through simply surfing the Internet, getting downloads, opening emails, etc., whether you use a Windows PC or a Mac.
But how can you effectively go about protecting your computer from all of the viruses that are out there and the many new ones that come onto the scene every day? Continue reading for a few tips.
Use a Firewall At All Times
One of the first and easiest steps that you can take to protect your computer is installing a firewall, which is basically a piece of software or hardware that will help block hackers from getting into your system and its data. Your computer's operating system may even have a firewall already built in, so all you have to do is turn it on and keep it updated.
In order to understand how a firewall can protect your computer, you have to understand how hackers operate. Basically, they send out what are known as pings to thousands of random computers, awaiting a response. While a firewall will keep your computer from providing a response to these hackers, failing to have one in place will make you more vulnerable to hackers.
Don't Open Emails or Attachments You Don't Recognise
Email attachments can contain viruses that automatically get downloaded onto your system, so make sure you only open emails from people you trust. You also shouldn't click on any links in emails you receive unless you know for certain that they are safe. It's a good idea to mouse over the link to see where it will take you before actually clicking on it. Beware, too, that if your friend gets a virus, it may send out emails automatically, so if you get any suspicious looking emails, it's best to inform the sender.
Install Anti-Virus and Anti-Spyware
The right anti-virus software could also protect your computer from a variety of viruses that could slow your computer down or destroy your data. These viruses can even let spammers send emails to you more easily. The software works by regularly scanning your system for threats and removing them as they are found. Just make sure you keep it updated so all current viruses can be recognised.
Anti-spyware software will also monitor your computer for any activities that are attempting to collect your personal information while you are surfing websites. If your computer suddenly gets a lot of pop-up ads, this is a sign you have spyware on your system. Some anti-virus programs will detect spyware too.
If your computer does become infected with a virus, anti-virus software could remove it, or you may need to completely reformat your system to clear everything off. Make sure you always keep a backup of all of your files, but if you lose anything, don't lose hope, as there are products like those at starxsoft.com that can help you retrieve them.