How to avoid Computer Viruses on your Windows PC?

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How to avoid Computer Viruses on your Windows PC?

Guide on avoiding computer Viruses on your Windows PC

So have you experienced your computer slowing down or recurring shortcuts or popups when plugged in? This may be because of the viruses. So how to save yourself from viruses in your PC?
Here are few tips..

1. Never click on a link or attachment in an email that you are not positive that it's from a trusted source. If you think the e-mail looks suspicious, it may probably be. It never hurts to send an email to verify that it is legitimate.
If you use an email retrieving program, disable the image previews option. Email applications like Outlook, Thunderbird, and others often automatically load attachments for your convenience, but this takes away your ability to decide whether a file is safe to open or not. Check your preferences to disable these settings.

2. Beware of files that have double extension such as .txt.vb or .jpg.exe. As a default setting, Windows often hides common file extensions (normally), meaning that a program like Paint.exe will appear to you as simply Paint. Double extensions exploit this. They hide the second and dangerous extension and reassure you with the first, the safe extension – which is utterly meaningless to your computer. Your system recognises only the extension to the extreme right and runs the file as such. If a common file type whose extension you never see normally suddenly becomes visible for no apparent reason, right-click on it, select Properties, and look for the complete file name with extension. You may be surprised to find out what kind of extension it really has.
To make your file extensions visible, find Folder Options in your Control Panel. Under the View tab, scroll down to Hide Extensions for Known File Types and make sure it is unselected. This way you can ensure before opening any program.

3. Use USB drives with caution. Plugging someone else’s USB drive into your computer (or plugging your own into a computer at, say, an internet cafĂ©/college) can spread an infection via the drive itself, not the file you’re actually trying to share. Whenever possible, try transferring files via email to keep potentially infected hardware out of the equation. Also, check out any shortcuts available when you plug external hardware.

4. Beware of internet pop-ups. The real danger is that some pop-ups are designed to look like they’ve originated from your computer, which makes you click on it. If you see a pop-up that looks like Windows (or another trusted program’s) anti-virus software but warns you of a problem that needs to be fixed with an extreme level of urgency, it may be a scam. (To be sure, simply close the warning, then open that anti-virus software from your computer to see if the warning is still mentioned.) Other programs report false errors and then offer to fix them if you purchase their software. If you see a new type of anti-virus pop-up that you have not seen before, or if it appears to be from an anti-virus program that you did not install, it is fake. Close the pop-up, update your anti-virus program, and run a full scan. Many of these browser-related apps keep some temporary files on your computer and can store a virus there. To avoid this risk, make sure you clear your browser’s cache regularly.
To clear cache Goto Start - Run - type "temp" and click enter. Delete all the files in the temp folder.

5. Beware of unusual emails from companies you do business with. If you receive an email from a company that you otherwise trust requesting information or recommending that you run a particular file, log into your account on that company’s page and see if there’s a notification there as well. Some scammers will get your trust by copying legitimate businesses’ email styles and using a similar-sounding reply-to address to lower your guard.
Note that good businesses will never request sensitive information, transaction details via email, which is one of the least secure ways of communicating.

6. Install an anti-virus program. Paid versions include Norton, McAfee, F-Secure, and Sophos. Free versions include AVG, Avast, Comodo, BitDefender, and Avira AntiVir. You can download the free versions from their official sites. Make sure you keep your virus definitions updated. Run a full system scan/quick scan weekly.

7. Install an anti-spyware program. Ad-Aware SE, Windows Defender, Malwarebytes, and Spybot Search and Destroy operate against internet malware and spyware that anti-virus programs overlook. Just like anti-virus software, keep it updated and do a full system scan weekly. You can also download Malware bytes, hitman, for free from the web which helps you remove malware from your PC.

8. Use a firewall. Make sure your Windows Firewall is turned on (run a search for Windows Security Center on your computer to configure). You can also install a trustworthy firewall program to help block unwanted internet traffic. Windows firewall is mostly preferred.
Note: You should not run two firewalls at the same time, as this will cause errors and can actually make your computer more vulnerable. If you’ve purchased or downloaded another firewall, make sure to disable Windows Firewall.

9. Set up your Windows Update to automatically download patches and upgrades. This will allow your computer to automatically download any updates to both Windows and Internet Explorer. These updates will fix security problems and block many spyware programs and viruses. Note that viruses sometimes piggyback onto trusted updates to infect your computer; however, this is much more typical of outdated updates, as they are less closely monitored. Therefore, it’s best to keep your updates as current as possible.

10. Consider switching to a different web browser. Some web browsers are more customizable than others like tor, mozilla etc., allowing you more control over pop-ups, ads, tracking, and other concerns that all of us face on the internet. Firefox, for example, has a large array of privacy- and security-related add-ons that will allow you to reclaim control over your web experience. Additionally, you can use ad blocker extensions on your browser to avoid annoying ads.

11. Google it. When in doubt about an email, file, warning, email address, advertisement, or anything else that seems suspect, do an online search to see what other people are saying. Throw in the word “scam” to weed out results that may have been placed there by the very people who are trying to cheat you.

We hope this article helped you. If you have any questions feel free to comment down.
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