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This is a repost of our very first blog, back in August of 2010.  In general, not much has changed in the Malware world- it’s still out there, and you still need to protect yourself.  If anything, its coders have gotten sneakier, so our tools have also changed, to keep up with the threats.  We no longer recommend Norton Anti-Virus, as they have radically changed their product, so now we recommend Bitdefender (see our blog from Nov 12, 2014 for details.)  Additionally, we usually use Microsoft Security Essentials as free, temporary protection for our clients, until a more robust, paid version is installed.

 

Here is the original post, as published back-when …..

 
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Malware is comprised of the words “malicious” and “software”. Malware is used to describe all different kinds of harmful software such as Trojans, viruses and Spyware.

What does Malware do?

Malware can do several different things. Malware can send out advertisement email (SPAM), steal passwords as well as identity theft. Malware is constantly evolving but the following six items tend to be the most common ways that Malware works:

  1. Stealing your personal information (including address books)
  2. Pop-Up ads while on regular websites
  3. Advertising emails (Junk email)
  4. Malware can slow down your connection or the speed at which your system runs.
  5. Malware can take over your browser and redirect you to a fake web page.
  6. Malware will ultimately cause your system to crash.

 

How to protect your system from Malware:

There are a few ways to protect your system against Malware. As far as software for purchase, Frankenstein recommends Norton’s Anti-virus Software. As a free software alternative, FCN recommends AVG Anti-virus Free.  These software products can help protect your system, however they are not guaranteed to protect against all malware issues.

Another recommendation for protecting against Malware is to not open e-mails when you’re not familiar with the sender’s email address.  An additional way to help protect your system is to stay away from un-trusted websites.