Protecting Your Computer from Viruses

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By John Janette Jr.

Hello. I would like to introduce myself. I am John, computer technician for Lindel Computers. I will be writing an article each month concerning technology and computing for The Milford Review. The first featured article deals with one of the most important concerns that computer users encounter every day; the dreaded computer virus.

Viruses and other malware continue to threaten computer users with sluggish performance, Internet and email problems and privacy issues. It is important to have protective tools in place before an attack because removing an infection once it has begun its damage can be difficult and costly.

First, make sure you have reliable antivirus software installed on your computer and learn how it works. Antivirus software scans files on your computer searching for certain patterns and definitions of known viruses. Once found, they are either deleted or put into a secure folder known as quarantine. Because virus authors are constantly releasing new viruses, it is important to have your antivirus updated daily. We recommend Avira Free and Avast Free. They are easy to find online and very user friendly. A google search will take you to download sites.

Second, make sure you have software that removes spyware and malware from your system. These programs have actually become a much larger problem than viruses. There are many different types that do many different things. Some examples are password stealers, pop up generators, browser redirectors, identity theft programs, and the popular trojan virus. The trojan virus is a very serious and severe virus which looks like a genuine program but will ask for a credit card number to get rid of the infection it maintains you have. Most likely the only infection the computer will have is the trojan program telling you it is infected, with the intent of using your card number for theft. They also slow down your computer, internet connections, and can crash your computer. We recommend Malewarebytes to prevent these infections. It’s free and again, a google search will find it.

Third, for web browsing, consider using Mozilla’s Firefox or Google Chrome. They have been tested for speed and security and are always at the top of the list for browsers. CNET.com did an independent test on 4 browsers for speed, security, add-ons and features with Firefox performing the best, Chrome and Safari tied for second (they share the same basic platform), and Internet Explorer came in last.

Stay informed, do your research and practice safe computing.

Please contact us concerning any comments, questions, or even any ideas you would like addressed in future articles at lindelcomputers@yahoo.com or 302-519-7000.