Let's face it: the last thing your
computer needs is a virus. Viruses are nasty programs
designed to damage computers and networks. A virus may cause odd messages
to appear on screens, spread itself by sending unintended emails
to your email contacts, damage your data, or
worse. Whatever the case, a virus is never a welcome surprise.
The Internet is a particularly dangerous tool for
those who create viruses, as it provides them with access to so many
computers, opening a whole new world of trouble.
Most viruses spread when users
infected floppy discs, unknowingly run infected programs or open email
attachments. If you download software (or just open attachments from
friends, relatives, or
business associates), there's a chance you'll bring home one of these digital bugs.
Still, it's fairly easy to protect your computer and valuable info from viruses. You'll just need to
consistently do a couple of things:
1) Never open, view or run an unexpected email
attachment, even if it's from someone you know. If you receive an
unexpected attachment from a stranger, delete it. If you receive one
from someone you know, but can't tell for certain that they intended
to send it to you (i.e. does the email contain personal references?),
contact them via email or directly to verify that they really intended to send the
2) Install a quality anti-virus program and
regularly update it. There are excellent virus protection
programs available that scan your hard drive and incoming email for viruses and delete them.
Two of the best known are Norton Anti-Virus and McAfee Antivirus. Both offer regular updates to handle newly discovered viruses
and warning customers of suspected Hoax’s on the Internet. Read more
about Virus Protection here.