If you have a Microsoft Windows based PC system, you can protect it from viruses with a little preventative care. Follow these nine steps to protect your computer, and your data.
1. Back up your system regularly. Even with the best protection, you could still come down with a virus. However, the damage done won’t rock your world if you have adequate backups of your data. Flash drives, CDs or an external hard drive are good sources to store backup data.
2. Reinstall your system if you contract computer viruses. Keep copies of your operating system and your software together, just in case a computer virus sneaks in and you need to get up and running again quickly.
3. Use a Firewall to protect your network connection. This software blocks connects that appear suspicious from penetrating your computer. Some operating systems come with their own Firewall, or you can find your own and install it.
4. Employ anti-virus software on all of your computers. This software scans your system regularly and looks for computer viruses. If it finds them, it erases them from your computer so they can’t do any damage.
5. Update your operating system regularly. This helps ensure you have the latest security protocol on your side.
6. Avoid downloading and installing software that seems suspicious. Look at the software creator of the official distributor to find out if software is reputable.
7. Steer clear of Internet Explorer. It’s the most common browser today, and is the most likely culprit of computer viruses. Instead, try Firefox or Opera and only use Internet Explorer on websites that aren’t compatible with other browsers.
8. Limit who can access your computer. Install a password and only share it with people who you want to have access to your computer.
9. Protect your computer against spam. Email is a common way to distribute computer viruses; eliminating spam email will help protect your computer.