When I mention the term “malware” around my friends and family, I get some really strange looks. Most people are not absorbed into the tech side of protecting their PC’s and really do not care what the name of the current disease is. It is an attitude and approach similar to the government; “wait til it happens, then fix it”. Fixing a PC after a malware infection can be like the government trying to fix the economy. You try to fix it and the problem does not go away, resurfaces, and in turn progressively worsens.
When you own a computer, the user must develop the attitude of prevention and protection. If you do not heed this advice, trust me, you will be in a position where you will be trying to fix your own economy… It is important to educate yourself about the threats, before the threats educate you. Malware today has developed into a threat with such magnitude that it is predominantly the preferred avenue of attack against everyday computer users.
What is malware?
In short it is “malicious software” that installs on your PC without your consent. It is designed to compromise your privacy, steal your money & identity, AND contaminate your PC. Basically, it just shows up in one form or another. (Obvious signs can be: as a popup, a browser redirect, suspicious security software, fake security warnings, your PC consistently runs slow, etc…).
How is it delivered?
Usually through misrepresentation or trickery… You click on a link in an email or a link on a web page that misrepresents what it really is and you’ve been had. Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file sharing, software pirating sites, porn sites are also favorite launching points for malware.
How to take the byte out of malware?
Layers of protection…What this is referring to is multi-layers of protection such as your firewall and various types of security software (e. g. anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-malware, browser protection, windows updates, software updates, etc…). It is important to maintain and keep these layers of protection in place.
One layer of protection that I currently use and highly recommend to all of my friends and family, to combat the threat of malware, is a program called “Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware”. Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware is an anti-malware application that can thoroughly remove even the most advanced malware.
I use this program to manually scan my PC on a regular basis. There is a “FREE” and “PAID” version. The difference is that the realtime protection, scheduled scanning, and scheduled updating features are not activated in the “FREE” version. Performing manual routine updates and scanning is sufficient in most cases. Just the fact that you have it installed and ready to go on your PC, in the event of a malware threat, is a big plus. Most tech people, without software such as this, will look you in the eye and tell you, formatting the hard drive and doing a complete operating system rebuild is the only way they will touch your PC. Due to the complexity of malware and today’s operating systems, no one can guarantee that your PC will be completely cleaned after a malware infection. I highly recommend that you download and install this software today.
Note to my readers: This article has also been featured on the site “Tech Thoughts”, which as a blogger, is an honor and privledge. “Tech Thoughts” is a high-octane site devoted to Security and System Tools and Tips, Software Reviews, News, Views, Downloads and Links.
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