3 Important Computer Security Tools To Help Keep You Safe

What are 3 important computer security tools? Could it be that easy?

Computer security in the early 21st century, to say the least, is challenging. We currently are dealing with new types of malware that surpass the traditional viruses we were just getting used to dealing with.

FreeImages.com/Con Mani

What is malware, you may ask...Well it is an umbrella term that covers a variety of malicious software including but not limited to: Trojans, spyware, worms, adware, ransomware, exploit kits, and viruses.

I've spent unknown hours researching the latest trends in malware and how to prevent its damage. I have customers everyday asking what to use and how to avoid all the gunk. All I have been able to tell them is: “I'm working on answers but for now make sure everything you can't afford to lose is backed up redundantly and you are using unique & random passwords.”

I now have some advice for improving computer safety -

3 Important Computer Security Tools:

  • a quality anti-virus program
  • a quality anti-malware program
  • good old-fashioned common sense

A quality anti-virus program is one that has been tested by trusted, independent IT security specialists. The AV-Test Institute is one that I use a lot. They do extensive research on anti-virus programs and how they perform on the different operating systems including Mac and mobile. **Also, look for an anti-virus program that manages its own updates and scans.

Look for a quality anti-malware program that not only detects malware on your system, but also removes it and cleans up any residual damage that was created. You will want a program that does a good job of blocking malicious websites and offers real time protection for those zero-day threats that are always lurking. Choose an anti-malware program that is lightweight and works well with your chosen anti-virus. We recommend Malwarebytes Anti-Malware / Anti-Spyware. It works well with Microsoft Defender to protect your system from the latest threats. An excellent product to add would be an anti-exploit program. This will block most of the drive-by hits before you even know what's happening.

Anti-Malware/Anti-Spyware. Detects and eliminates malware your antivirus will miss.

If you sign up for Malwarebytes Anti-Malware using this link, you will have the best anti-malware protection available and we will receive a small commission that will help support this website. Thank you in advance.

Ruh roh raggy.... My son, daughter, dog, etc. downloaded a malicious app and now my computer is all locked up!

Ok, here is where the good old-fashioned common sense arrives to save the day....

  • Make sure all of the software including plug-ins, add-ons, and applications you have on your computer are up to date. The hackers look for vulnerabilities in these places in order to launch their exploit kits.
  • Use unique, random, and long passwords for each device and software login. Never use the same one twice. If you share the same password between your email and online banking accounts, they will both be vulnerable in the instance of an attack.
  • Watch out for phishing attacks. These are emails that look to be from a trusted company but are actually embedded with malicious links and downloads.
  • Never use open, public WiFi. And make sure that your WiFi router is password protected with a difficult, unique password. Don't spell anything out or use dates. Choose random letters, numbers and symbols. Make the password at least 10 digits long, if possible.
  • Don't trust The Cloud with sensitive data.
  • And, back to password settings, make sure that you take advantage of two-factor authentication if it is offered. If you have to use password recovery questions, don't use obvious answers. Most anyone can find out what your mother's maiden name was with less than 10 to 20 minutes Internet research time. Make up silly answers, but make sure you write them down because you won't remember them.

Follow these 3 important computer security tools and soon you will have many of those hackers scratching their heads and saying: “I would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn't for you meddling kids.”

Clearly I spent way too much time as a child watching Scooby Doo.

Return to Security

Return to HOME