• SumoMe

So, you have a computer, that’s great news!!

Are you safe?

That’s not so easy to answer, especially if you are new to computing.  There are steps that you can take to make your information safer and that can protect you.  I would like to suggest some free applications that you can download and just because they are free, does not make them any less efficient.  In fact, in the past, there have been reviews that have included free apps against the paid ones, and, they have been even MORE efficient that the paid for ones!!

Incredible!!

Have a look through some old copies of computer magazines that do reviews, you will be pleasantly surprised!!

Firstly, the first thing I would recommend, if you don’t already, and that is to have an Anti-virus program.  Computer viruses, unfortunately, are quite prevalent with new ones being developed and released on a daily basis.  But, before I go any further, don’t panic!!  If you keep your AV program up to date, you should be OK.  Don’t worry about what the media say, they love to “over” emphasise things.  It is great business for computer shops when people take them to be checked and you’re already perfectly covered!!

A couple of free ones are AVG and Avast, both can be downloaded from Download.com and all you have to do is type either of the names “AVG free” or “Avast free”  in the search box.  Each come with more bells and whistles that you can pay for if you wish, but, the free version, if finances are tight, are more than adequate.  My personal experience has been with AVG.  It doesn’t slow your computer down and it also checks for malicious websites.  I have installed Avast for friends who prefer that one.  So either are good to have.

Each of them are easy to install, simply save them to your desktop so that they are easy to find.  I would advise choosing the default choices unless you have more detailed knowledge.  This is a big step in the right direction to protect your computer if you have no protection at all.  I would also advise letting them do a complete scan.  It can take some time, but, you should be able to use your computer while it runs in the background.   They will report any issues and usually fix them automatically.  If they can’t, they can take you to a web page for further help, or, take it to a computer professional who will be able to help further.

I also recomment that you have a firewall.  A firewall will help to stop unauthorised access to your computer.  They can usually be found built into most modern wireless routers and you can also use the one that comes with Windows as a backup.  If you don’t have a router, and, are only using a modem, a free firewall such as Zonealarm is a good start.  It is very easy to install and, again, you can find it at Download.com and typing it into the search.

So, with an Anti-virus program and a firewall, your security is greatly enhanced.

One other quick tip is to have a password setup for when you start up your computer.  When you get a new one, it is always much better to set one up during the initial installation of your personal information.  Otherwise, if you know a good competent computer engineer, they will be able set it up for you within 10 minutes or less!!

If in any doubt, or, you are not sure, please seek professional help from someone who is qualified.  Go on the recommendation of friends for a shop that does great computer support.  Build up a good customer relationship with them, you may get a great deal on your next upgrade!!

 

Filed under: Malcolm CharlawRecommended

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