PC security: 7 Tips to better protect your PC from attacks

PC security: 7 Tips το protect your PC from attacks

With the following 7 advices, you can increase your PC security and protect your system better from attacks.

1. Firewall

The firewall is a basic defence mechanism for any computer, Smartphone, Router, etc. The firewall can be considered as a wall between your computer and the public network (www), which identifies potential risks (for example, hacker attack, worms) and blocks them. In order for its efficiency to be improved, the firewall should be regularly updated, so it can detect new dangers. Every PC has a firewall installed, however make sure if it is activated and updated.

2. Antivirus Program

Each computer should absolutely have an antivirus program installed. An antivirus program, just like a firewall, have as a goal to protect your computer from attacks, however, the approach that they both use is different. The antivirus program scans “new files” that have been loaded or opened on your computer (for example, e-mails, banners). The antivirus is activated when it is detected that your computer has been infected by malware, and then the malware goes into quarantine and then erased [1].

3. Updates

It should be clear to everyone that in order for you to always have the best PC security on your computer, you should regularly update your software. It is highly unlikely, no matter which software package you use, that it will initially operate without errors or problems. The update packages include not only “beauty changes“ or software extensions, but they correct also the “programming gaps“, which could set the security of your system at risk.

4. Add-on for blocking advertisements

For internet browsers, like Google Chrome or Firefox, there is the possibility for you to install free add-ons. One that is really useful is the add-on: AdBlock. This add-on blocks the unwanted advertisements (banner ads, pop-ups, etc.) on the internet very successfully. Apart from the fact that you can use it in order to surf on the internet free of advertisements, it can also be used for blocking many threats, so your system can become through that way a little bit safer.

5. Foreign networks

It doesn`t matter how good your antivirus program or your firewall is, if you sign in with your PC or cell phone in foreign networks, you automatically put your device in great danger. Every network that is not under your name is considered foreign. Networks, such as public networks or Hotspots in cafes, parks or airports should be always considered dangerous. An attack, for example, can be made here if an attacker uses the so called sniffer-programs. The sniffer-programs can be obtained free and legally (for example, the network administrators are using them). However, the worst thing is that such applications cannot be detected as viruses, because the only thing that these programs do is to monitor the movement of all the data that users of a WLAN network have and if necessary to save this information. If for example you want to sign in – in a network like that – in your account, then an attacker can easily obtain the username and the password that you are using. Unfortunately, in such cases the antivirus programs and the firewall are totally useless. In order for you to eliminate this kind of danger, you should use, when you sign in in foreign networks, antivirus programs with VPN access (Virtual Private Network). Nowadays there are plenty antivirus programs that offer that choice for free. The advantage of the VPN access is that all your data movement is encrypted from the antivirus and so, the attacker receives only incomprehensible characters that are totally useless.

6. Password manager program

Ideally you would use for every account (e-mail, social media, etc.) one secure password which you would update regularly. In reality though you probably don`t do that. If you use always the same or maximum 1 or 2 passwords, then you are in great danger. In fact, it is not necessary for you to make a mistake, but it is enough when someone hacks only one of the accounts that you have. If you really use always the same access data, then a hacker will have the access data for all your accounts! In order to avoid this kind of trouble, you should use one password manager. The password manager handles the access data for all your accounts by memorizing and encrypting every username and password. At the same time, this program gives you the possibility to create safe passwords. The use of that program is mostly straightforward. For each and every one of your accounts you should, only the first time, accept the storage of every password you have. So, now you will only have to remember 1 password, the manager password, which will be asked – when you start the program – to be confirmed, so you can use your password manager for all your accounts. For that it would be wise to use a particularly safe password which you can also memorise. How you can create a safe password, you can read about it here. The password manager can also be installed as an add-on for your browser (chrome, Mozilla, etc.), and one example is the free add-on: LastPass.

7. Back Up

If everything has gone wrong, I hope you have a back up of your system. It is recommended that you make regularly backups of your system (e.g. weekly). It is essential to use an external medium (hard drive, DVD, cloud) or backup, since the backups can otherwise be threatened by themselves. How you can create a backup, you can for example read the following:

 

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