Run Virus Protection
If you regularly use the internet on your computer, it’s incredibly important that you run antivirus and antispyware software on a regular schedule. These malware programs can sneak in when you’re not looking and cause all sorts of problems, so it’s crucial that you catch them and remove them as soon as possible. Prevention is the best protection against viruses, however, as once they’ve infiltrated your computer they can be tricky to find and remove.
If you do find a virus on your computer, you may be able to remove it with a specialized program, known as a MRT (malicious software removal tool). If it’s an especially nasty virus that shuts down your system or edits your files, you may have to take your computer to a repair shop to have it removed.
Keep a Firewall Active
Another easy way to protect your computer is to keep a firewall turned on and active. Windows Firewall comes standard with every Windows PC, and is an easy way to block malicious attacks from viruses, software, and network hackers.
Avoid Clicking Unfamiliar Links
One of the easiest computer security tips to follow is to avoid clicking unsolicited links in emails. If you don’t know the sender of the email, if it comes from an unfamiliar address, or if something simply doesn’t look “right” about it, don’t click the link. Instead, try running a search on the company, the email title, or copy and paste the text of the link into your search box. The search results should give you a clue as to whether the link is a valid one or a scam.
Avoid Downloading Bundled Software
Freeware, shareware, and other bundled software programs often come with spyware packages included. To protect your computer and your privacy, read all user agreements carefully as you install the programs. The user agreement will clearly explain what software is bundled with the program, as well as what information it collects. Don’t consent to give away your private information – no free font or graphic is worth it.
The easiest free computer maintenance tip to follow is to stay alert and informed. Education is your best defense against malicious software, viruses, and hackers.