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How to Avoid Email Viruses | Computer Safety Tips

Posted on October 19, 2015.

One of the most successful ways to distribute viruses and other malware today is through email, because it is easy, anonymous and inexpensive. To gain your trust, the attackers will disguise dangerous emails as messages from trusted sources, such as shipping companies, banks or email providers. They may also use data from compromised accounts of associates or publicly-available information to personalize the emails and make them appear more trustworthy. If any email viruses are allowed to run, they can compromise sensitive business or personal information, corrupt files, or even encrypt your files and hold them for ransom. To keep your system safe, there are several steps that can be taken to avoid email viruses.

Keep Your System Updated

Whether you use Windows, OSX or Linux, check for and install any updates at least once a week. Also, be sure to keep your web browsers, such as Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer or Safari, up to date, as well as any plug-ins, like Adobe Flash or Java. Bugs in the operating system or other software can allow email viruses attached to an email or embedded in a linked website to compromise your system.

Install Security Software

Install a reputable anitvirus program, as well as a personal firewall if you are lacking firewall protection, and keep both programs up to date. The antivirus software will compare all incoming emails and files to known threats, and quarantine them if necessary. A firewall will block communications from dangerous sites, work with your antivirus software to inspect downloaded files, and scan incoming and outgoing traffic for any threats. It is also a good idea to install a separate, reputable program to scan for adware, which can sometimes slip by antivirus software.

Use Software Wisely

Never download an email attachment, unless you verify it with the sender first, and never click on a link in an email. Finally, do not let plug-ins in web browsers play content automatically.

By updating regularly and remaining vigilant, you can avoid email viruses and protect your sensitive information.  If you have any questions or need to have an email virus removed from your system, then contact Computer Solutions of Freehold today at 732-333-8275.