How To Prevent Browser Attacks

It’s every computer users’ worst fear – you’re cruising along on the internet, minding your own business, when suddenly you become the victim of one of the millions of browser attacks that happens every year. Luckily, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself from browser and hacker attacks, using simple (and free) computer maintenance tips.

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image courtesy of flickr user: Don Hankins

Keep Your Browser Up to Date

No matter the web browser you choose, it’s absolutely crucial that you keep it updated. Each time a new series of browser attacks emerges, developers begin work patching up security holes in the software. Each new release is more secure than the last, making continuous upgrades your best defense against browser attacks.

This advice also applies to any plugins or enhancements you’re running in addition to your browser. First, be sure that they’re made by reputable programmers and were downloaded from the browser’s main website. Unknown plugins or extensions could contain malware, spyware, or redirect programs that could be stealing login information, passwords, or financial information directly from your browser. These Man in the Browser attacks are becoming more popular and more damaging than ever, and prevention is your best defense.

Run Protective Software

For regular protection against viruses, spyware, and malware, consider installing protective software, such as Windows Firewall. You may also want to install a specialized antivirus or antispyware program, if you struggle with either of these types of software. Scan your computer regularly to remove harmful programs, unwanted files, and other potentially dangerous elements.

Research Before You Download

When you’re online, research free software and programs carefully before downloading them. Often, developers package attractive free offers along with spyware programs to make them seem more enticing. So, while you may receive a program to print free coupons, play a hot new game on your favorite social networking site, or add smilies to your email account, you’re also allowing the software to spy on where you go and what you do online.

Read license terms and agreements carefully before you download any software, and if you’re in doubt, plug the name of the program into your favorite search engine. A few seconds of research could save you hours of heartache.

Spyware, viruses, and other malware are extremely malicious. These types of software can harvest your financial information, access your passwords, download files to your computer, and more. The best defense is a good offense, so make sure you’re well prepared by preventing browser attacks before they start.

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