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How to protect yourself against ransomware

Protect your computer with strong security software and keep it updated. Make sure to find a solution which integrates anti-virus, anti-spyware, firewall, anti-spam, anti-phishing, and provides protection from Trojans, hackers and spyware.

  1. Use a security-conscious Internet service provider (ISP) that implements strong anti-spam and anti-phishing procedures.

  2. Enable automatic Windows updates or download Microsoft updates regularly to keep your operating system patched against known vulnerabilities. Install patches from other software manufacturers as soon as they are distributed. A fully patched computer behind a firewall is the best defense against malware installation.

  3. Use extreme caution when opening attachments. Configure your anti-virus software to automatically scan all email and instant message attachments. Make sure your email program or app doesn't automatically open attachments or render graphics and ensure the preview pane is turned off. This will prevent macros from executing. Never open unsolicited business emails, or attachments that you are not expecting - even from people you know.

  4. Be careful when engaging in peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing. Malware sit within file sharing programs waiting to be downloaded. Use the same precautions when downloading shared files that you do for email. Anti-virus software and a good firewall will protect your system from malicious files.

  5. Download the latest version of your browser to ensure that it is also fully updated and utilized the latest technologies to identify and filter out phishing sites that can install malware.

  6. Use security precautions for your mobile phones, tablets and other wi-fi devices.

  7. Be certain a web site is legitimate before you go there.

  8. Back up your files regularly and store the backups on an external hard drive which is not constantly connected to your computer or by using a secure cloud-based virtual service.

Robust malware protection specifically guards your finances. These tools safeguard your account information, and can also provide password-management tools so that frustration over forgotten passwords does not lead you to skip over this essential component of protection.

No protection is absolute but a combination of personal awareness and well-designed protective tools will make your computer as safe as it can be.

Contact us for more information.


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