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How To Secure Your Computer

The year 2017 has been marred by cybersecurity threats, one of which that caught the attention of the whole world is the WannaCry ransomware.What is a ransomware? A Ransomware is a kind of malicious code that infects a device and encrypts its data, rendering it unusable.

The only way for the user to retrieve the files is to pay a ransom in a form of BitCoin currency transaction to receive the decryption key. Though the effects of the ransomware were immediately thwarted, it proved a point that all legacy systems and even the latest OS are vulnerable.
Upgrading the whole system is the most logical solution to protect your data. However, this is not totally applicable to regular users like us. Not unless if the upgrade will not incur any fee. Unfortunately, this is not the case with today's software set up. So How can we still protect our files without shedding a buck? You can follow my recommendations below.
  • Keep your Operating System Up to Date.
  • Install an Antivirus Software
  • Install a Firewall
  • Install an AntiSpyware Software
I know, you might be thinking why should I install applications that are already provided with the OS? Well, there is a huge difference especially in the capability of installing dedicated software. The perfect analogy will be the comparison of the best Phone Camera and the best DSLR camera. Now that you have a list of what to install the next question is what kind of capability should I be looking?

Here is the rundown.

Antivirus Software
    • Make sure that it has an On-Access Control Feature. Meaning, it will perform a scan when the user opens a file.
    • It has a feature to scan all files regardless if it is just a text or document file. Some Antivirus software is only scanning the files that are commonly used by the viruses to attach themselves. This leaves a vulnerability since virus coders are also upgrading their virus implementation.
AntiSpyware Software
    • Preferably the same implementation as the Antivirus software.
    • Make sure to regularly scan the system  for added security.
Firewall Software
    • The primary feature of a firewall is to be able to detect all incoming and outgoing requests from applications installed in your system. Make sure that the firewall you are going to install has a feature to prompt every application requests, allowing you to accept or deny the said request. This way, you can flag and be able to discern if a request is coming from your legit software or not.
    • One nice feature to have is port controlling. The firewall must be able to open, block or reroute/forward a port.
Operating System Software
    • Keep your OS up to date by installing critical security updates. Be very careful when upgrading though, since some updates may cause incompatibility issues with your OS, Hardware or even your installed applications! Implement a semi-automatic update so that the OS will download the updates but it will be your choice to install them. This method is effective in avoiding the scenario mentioned above.

By following these steps, I am confident that you will be able to harden the security of your computer and be able to protect your file from loss because of virus infection. A reminder though, that these software applications can only do so much. At the end of the day, the user itself is the best security implementation.

Think before you click. Your Life In Perspective.

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