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Ways to Stay Safe on the Internet

Scan for viruses and spyware weekly for best results.

 Most antivirus programs should prevent known viruses from installing if updated and configured correctly, but They can’t always remove installed viruses automatically.

 Antivirus and Antispyware software will warn you if something malicious tries to install itself. Always block installs unless you know what the program is and that you do in fact want to install it. Be aware that free downloads may install spyware without you or your anti-virus program being aware of it.

 Do not click on links in email or IM unless you know what it is and that you really want to run the target page (or program). Viruses can be installed by clicking on a web page link.

 Never open files sent by email or IM unless you know what it is and that you really want the file on your hard drive. Most viruses can be transferred as files in email and IM, or by visiting an infected or malicious web site.

Never click on pop-up ads even if they say your computer is running slow, or is infected with spyware. They will always install more and slow your system down.   Be careful with the ones that say your computer is infected, offer a free scan then want you to pay by credit card to clean your system, they might want just your credit card number. Check the company information first!

Close pop-ups by right clicking on the icon in the task bar and choosing “close”.

 Be aware that file sharing programs may allow you to download files for free, but the cost is the risk involved in allowing others to access your computer and download files from your hard drive. There are viruses that spread through file sharing programs. Even if there is no virus transferred, you will experience a slowdown as others use your memory, hard drive, and internet connection.

Although anti-virus and spyware programs are installed and protecting your system, they are not infallible. These programs cannot detect or remove threats unless the threats have been discovered, definitions written, and distributed to your computer. It is quite probably that your computer will be exposed to a virus, worm, or Trojan before protection is available and installed; so it pays to be careful.

 

 

 

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Last modified: 08/12/09