Blog Entry 7: Internet Security & Malware

I’ll admit; I’m a big fan of the World Wide Web, specifically the Internet of today. These days, it’s become so easy to find information that, just half a decade ago, would have been worth quite a sum of money. (Or my big toe.) Not to mention that communication with far flung regions have been made so convenient, contributing to the metropolitanization of Internet users

Sure, there are a few annoyances here and there, but I can usually deal with it. Well, most of it anyway. Because if there’s one thing that I really hate about the internet, it’s malware.

Short for “malicious software”, malware, according to Wikipedia, is software used or created to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, or gain access to private computer systems. It includes computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, spyware, adware and other malicious programs, and has led to the increased use of protective software types like firewalls, antivirus and anti-malware.

According to Apartment Therapy, there are 7 ways to avoid malware, namely:

  1. Developing Good Web-Browsing Habits: Avoid clicking on links you don’t trust, don’t install software unless you’ve specifically requested for it, close a pop-up using keyboard shortcuts (Alt+F4 for PC) instead of clicking it
  2. Watching Out for Emails: Never click on spam, pay attention to even emails from trusted sources, watch out for irregularity from regular contacts
  3. Being Careful of What You’re Installing: Note what you’re clicking “Yes”, “Ok” or “Next” for, ensure no additional software is added to your computer
  4. Keeping Your Software Updated: Official updates for browsers and operating systems will often fix security loopholes or bugs in earlier versions
  5. Use a Legitimate Antivirus Software: Ensure that the antivirus is from a trusted source, keep it turned on and updated, and schedule regular scans
  6. Set Up a Firewall: Depending on the setting, firewalls will note all attempts to access your computer and make you aware
  7. Don’t Share Files: Such as illegally downloaded music and videos. This includes files from flash drives, which may not necessarily be safe
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