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Virus and Malware Protection Requires Vigilance

The numbers are grim when it comes to the ability of antivirus and malware software to protect your computer from an invasion. Keeping a close eye on your computer is a huge help.

Let’s start with the bad news. I was astonished to learn that the four major antivirus engines used to combat viruses combine can only detect 40% of the viruses floating around. If you want to take some consolation, it’s a higher success rate than this past year’s flu vaccine, but it’s not comforting. It’s the same with antimalware protection. Quite simply, the antivirus and antimalware software developers can’t keep up with the volume of viruses and malware that’s produced every day.

If you know or believe your computer is infected by a virus or malware, disconnect it from your network or the Internet or shut down the computer and call us – 973-433-6676. IT professionals know which tools to use and where to use them to find and remove them. The tools are Microsoft tools, and they are free, but, again, it’s a matter knowing how to use them and being able to verify that a computer is totally disinfected.

If you have an infected server and no back-up in place, we’ll try to clean the server. With a computer, it’s easier to isolate the infection and – if needed – rebuild it, which means wipe it clean and reinstall the operating system, application software and data files. If you are using cloud-based applications and data files, the chances of an infection are greatly reduced because the hosting companies constantly update the software.

While the numbers may seem to be stacked against you, you can take steps to protect yourself. First, install, update and use your antivirus and antimalware software. Those programs will pick off the more numerous “easy-to-detect” viruses and malware.

Second, be very careful about the websites you visit and the networks you allow to connect to your computer. Only go to trusted sites and only connect with trusted networks. Of course, there’s a caveat here. Sometimes, your antivirus software may flag a network or computer trying to connect, and it may be a false positive. If it looks like something that’s OK, it’s most likely a network driver update.

Contact us – 973-433-6676 or email – if you have any questions about anything having to do with viruses or malware on your computer or server. It’s a dangerous world out there, but it’s more than survivable with good judgment and common sense.