Ever since the internet became a part of our daily lives, virus developers have unleashed their creations on an unsuspecting public. Even with substantial inroads being made in the field of cybersecurity, virus developers are continually stepping up their game and finding ways to work around assorted security apparatuses. Although viruses vary in terms of severity, no one relishes being hit with one. Fortunately, avoiding computer viruses isn’t nearly as daunting as many people think. A little bit of effort on your part can go a long way in providing you with a virus-free online experience.
Invest in Reliable Anti-Virus Software
Reliable anti-virus software can be an invaluable ally in the quest to purge to computer viruses. The right anti-virus program will act as a buffer against a wide assortment of cyber threats and prove useful in removing any viruses that have already taken hold of your computer. Of course, for maximum effectiveness, all anti-virus programs must be kept up to date. This means installing updates as they become available instead of tucking them away for installation at a later time.
When shopping around for the right anti-virus software, take the time to do your homework. In addition to doing online research into various programs, make sure that consumer reviews factor into your decision. While it’s true that nearly every program is going to have a few unfavorable reviews, you should move on to another program if the bad reviews significantly outnumber the good ones.
Install Operating System (OS) Updates as They Become Available
Most of us are guilty of putting operating system updates on the backburner. After all, installing OS updates is cumbersome and somewhat time-consuming. Worse yet, the installation process often inhibits any other online activities in which we’re currently engaged. Furthermore, the installation process typically ends with a forced reboot and depending on the age and general condition of your computer, this is liable to take a while.
However, even if many OS updates don’t provide any noticeable perks, a sizable percentage of them include essential security updates. These updates are often created in response to newly-developed viruses, malware, and other cyber threats. So in failing to install them in a timely manner, you’re opening your computer up to all modes of attack. The longer a system update remains on the backburner, the longer your computer remains exposed. Cumbersome though it may be, installing operating system updates as they become available can dramatically reduce the risk of virus infection and be a boon to your online security. So the next time you are presented with a new system update, don’t hesitate to install it.
Install Virus-Blocking Browser Plug-ins
No matter which browser you prefer, you should be able to find a convenient assortment of virus-blocking plug-ins. In addition to preventing browsers from opening pages that contain suspicious scripts, many of these plug-ins will warn you whenever virus activity is detected. In order to get the most out of these plug-ins, you’ll need to update as necessary and always be running the latest version of your preferred browser.
Be Discerning About What You Install
Freeware programs have long been a popular vehicle for virus propagation. As such, you’d be wise to exercise caution when installing programs from unfamiliar sites or sources. The next time you’re tempted to install a program from a questionable source, weigh the risk against the benefit. Odds are dealing with a nasty virus isn’t worth whatever you stand to gain from installing the program in question. By the same token, avoid clicking on links and attachments found in emails from unfamiliar parties. Even if an email appears to be from a friend, family member or coworker, make sure to carefully review the actual message before trusting any corresponding links or attachments.
Computer viruses have plagued internet users for decades. Even when much of the world had yet to make online activity a part of their daily lives, virus developers were hatching assorted schemes and spreading their heinous wares. Now that many of us live a fair portion of our lives online, there’s little wonder as to why virus developers and other cybercriminals have become more active than ever. To them, every internet user represents a potential target, so it behooves security-conscious individuals to remain on guard. In the fight against computer viruses, the previously discussed pointers will do you a world of good.