In the latest instalment of Ask CyberGuru, we are asked, “How can I prevent viruses on my computer?”. As the saying goes, prevention is better than the cure, so here we provide three tips on how you can prevent viruses on your computer.
During the installation of computer software, some software manufacturers are bundling another company’s software with their own. Examples of this include Adobe Reader and Apple QuickTime, which also attempt to install additional programs and toolbars if you go through the installation without looking through the prompts that are automatically selected. If you are not careful, you may find you have installed unnecessary programs on your computer. These are referred to as “potentially unwanted programs”.
Our first example of a potentially unwanted program is the installation of Google Chrome and Google Toolbar when you is Adobe Reader. These programs selected by default when you first download and install Adobe Reader. Whilst you may appreciate a second (or third) internet browser on your computer, it is often the case you may not know that it has downloaded and installed until you complete the first installation. A secondary browser is not always a bad thing (as noted from our recent blog post about Norton and Internet Explorer), however an internet browser toolbar can be. They can slow down the performance of a computer dramatically and can also present issues with privacy and security.
Whilst websites are increasingly popular, on occasion where we receive a business card or brochure, the organisation advertising is using an email address supplied by their internet service provider or a free email address provider, such as Gmail or Outlook.com. Not only do these not look unprofessional, they can also present a number of risks to your business. We provide five reasons for using commercial email hosting in your organisation.
What’s worse than no password? A default or generic password on your modem/router. Many manufacturers and internet service providers set up modem/routers with administrative access passwords with default usernames and passwords. These are not very safe when modem/routers by that manufacturers and internet service provider often use the same details!
Whilst this makes the ability for configuring modem/router simple, it can also result in users who have access to your network to be able to perform changes on the modem/router if they know the correct details. With those details, they can see and change important details, effectively blocking you from access to your own modem/router, and could even possibly change your wireless’ password!