In this day and age, it’s pretty standard to have some sort of antivirus program installed on your computer. Here at FixMeStick we use McAfee Total Protection. Having an antivirus program is a great way to make sure you’re keeping your computer safe and sound. But at the end of the day, is having a virus prevention program enough to keep you safe?
Only A Fraction of Viruses Are Ever Investigated
On a weekly basis, security companies receive roughly 17,000 malware alerts from their products. Of these 17,000, only 19% were deemed reliable, and only 4% were ever actually investigated. So on average, 40% of malware makes its way past the antivirus installed on your computer.
Although most organizations spend roughly 80% of the security budgets on these virus prevention technologies, a large portion of it goes unchecked simply due to lack of resources. Antivirus programs are programmed to scan for specific characteristics in viruses – if a virus doesn’t match the profile, it can easily slip by undetected.
As Your Virus Prevention Programs Update, So Do the Viruses
Essentially, each virus prevention program uses specific techniques and prior virus knowledge in order to properly assess the threats to your computer.
The problem with this is that although the virus prevention program is able to detect your standard threats, viruses are constantly updating and evolving to bypass these prevention techniques. Studies show that it can take up to six months for products to identify all potential malware – but remember, the longer the malware stays on your computer, the more damage it can do.
What You Can Do to Prevent Viruses (Better Safe Than Sorry)
It’s always best to have all your bases covered, and while having antivirus software is always your safest option, you can never be too safe. Here are 5 tips to make sure you’re keeping your computer safe and secure.
1. Be Careful Around Unsecure Sites
Though they may seem secure, some websites are not as legitimate as you may think. You can always tell by looking at the beginning of the web address: sites beginning with “http” are not secure, while ones beginning with “https” are. The extra S actually indicates that the site is secure. If you have to download anything, provide an email, or enable file sharing – keep your wits about you!
2. Don’t Download Anything Unless You Know What Exactly You’re Downloading
Viruses will often make their way onto your computer through downloads. Whether it be a movie from the internet, or a new app you’ve heard of – make sure that the website is legitimate and that the link itself seems authentic. Many false download links will be generic and over-exaggerated, i.e. “DOWNLOAD HERE” in big bright letters.
3. Keep Your Operating System Up To Date
Viruses will often try to exploit security holes with outdated versions of Windows and MacOS. It’s always in your best interest to keep your operating system up to date – sometimes change is for the best!
4. Antivirus Programs: Run Often, Update Often
Antivirus software isn’t perfect, but they’re your best bet in keeping your computer safe and functional. By running it often and keeping up with the updates, you’re keeping one step ahead of any potential threat to your computer.
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5. When In Doubt, FixMeStick It Out!
As stated before, a lot of antivirus programs only catch a fraction of the malware that comes through. That’s where the FixMeStick comes in! In the case that any virus makes its way through, FixMeStick is an external virus remove device so it is able to do a deep and thorough clean of your computer! And while a healthy knowledge of virus prevention is always appreciated, running a FixMeStick scan once a month is a sure fire way of keeping on top of your virus worries.
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