There are steps you can take to stop malware

There are things you can to to minimize the threat of malware infections.

Prior to visiting any unknown website, use to scan the site. We will correlate multiple factors to assess the risk of threats on the site. Threats assessed include embedded links to malicious sites, malware, viruses, worms, trojans, adware, spyware and phishing attacks. We are free to use.

We also recommend keeping your system patched, whether it is a Windows or Mac based device. If you don't, you are almost asking for trouble.

You also need to understand how malware works, including how it can get into your own system.

Here is how MicroSoft puts it:

Malware authors use several common tricks to install their malicious software on your PC. Understanding the most common ways they do this can help you stay protected.

Email – Malware often arrives on your PC in an email attachment. You should never open an attachment from someone you don’t know or if an email looks suspicious. Instant messages and requests for file transfers can also spread malware.

Websites – Never open links to webpages that you don’t recognize or that are sent from people you don’t know. Malicious websites can install malware on your PC when you visit them. Use caution – If you view a website that doesn’t look quite right, or unexpected things happen when you visit, close your browser, download the latest updates for your security software and run a quick scan on your PC.

Pirated software – Malware is often bundled together with pirated software. When you install the pirated software you may also install malware. You can find more information on the Protect your PC from pirated software page.

Social engineering – Malware authors often try and trick you into doing what they want. This can be clicking or opening a file because it looks legitimate, paying money to unlock your PC or visiting a malicious webpage. These deceptive appeals are known as social engineering.

Passwords – Attackers may try to guess your Windows account or other passwords. This is why you should always use a password that can’t be guessed easily. A strong password has at least eight characters and includes letters, numbers, and symbols. There is more information on the Create strong passwords page.

USB flash drives and other removable drives – Some types of malware, such as worms, can spread by copying themselves to any USB flash drives or other removable drives that are connected to your computer. Always be careful when sharing removable drives, and make sure you scan them. We have instructions on how to scan USB flash drives on our help page.

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