General

Analyze Suspicious Files, Executables, and Websites

VirusTotal is a free service that analyzes suspicious files and URLs and facilitates the quick detection of viruses, worms, trojans, and all kinds of malware.

Proactive Anti-Virus Software

Having a proactive anti-virus software will automatically detect malicious actions or unnwarranted downloads.

Actively Use HTTPS

Only visit reputable sites and use secure sites with HTTPS addresses for purchasing. It is best to get files from reputable sites, such as vendor websites, directly, and if possible, using HTTPS and an ad-blocker to avoid malvertizing.

Keep Software Up-to-Date

Keeping software up-to-date not only enhances user experience but also addresses any security vulnerability.

Comprehending Files

Disable “Hide extensions for known file types” in Windows File Explorer. Be suspicious of any files ending in .exe (executable file) or with double endings such as .mp3.exe. Be suspicious on content being downloaded that appears to be smaller in size than expected (example: an HD 2 hour movie as 10MB in size).

Consider also disabling Hide extensions for known file types.

Be Cautious Of Unfamiliar Sites

Malware inducing sites may infect a machine with a virus at any click, especially if you’re using outdated software (also known as a drive-by). Avoid clicking links that direct to an IP Address (example: 69.11.123.456)

Refrain From Altering System Files

Do not alter or otherwise edit system files without understanding or knowing the changes it will incur. Never take a registry edit from an unknown source.

Software Selection

Understand and install software that you only need. Uninstalling unnecessary software such as toolbars and pre-installed software (software that come in an already built computer) can improve your performance and security. Take the time to read through the setup process and uncheck anything that you don’t need to install, including toolbars, home page changes, search engine changes, etc. Go through the advanced process of installment if you have the oppurtunity. Avoid toolbars and download managers.

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