Computers aren’t immune to virus effects. They can get infected with malware (malicious software) that slows down your activity, infiltrates your system and can seriously hinder your online activity.
So what do you do? If you’re not an IT specialist, it’s tough to know if you’re doing a good job taking care of your laptop or PC. Fortunately, most Internet providers, and some freestanding companies, offer tons of options to help protect your computer from harmful virus effects.
Ways to protect your computer from virus effects
You can do some seriously simple things to combat the effects of a virus. But first, it’s important to answer the question, “where do viruses come from?”
A lot of viruses and malware pop up in emails – clinking on a link in an email could launch a virus that infects your computer. Since suspicious emails are one of the most common examples of viruses, it’s always smart to never open an email that you aren’t 100% sure of its origin.
To help keep your inbox – and your conscious clear – you can use these tools:
- Firewall. A firewall is kind of what it sounds like – a virtual wall that prevents malware from getting through to your computer – and accessing your information.
- Anti-virus protection. This type of software identifies viruses when they hit your computer, and subsequently attempts to remove them before you see any kind of virus effects.
- Parental controls. If you have kids at home, the last thing you want is for them to click on something that they don’t know what it is. With parental controls, you can block certain types of sites, specific sites and even prohibit Internet use during certain times of the day.
- Backup cloud services. Sometimes even with the right defenses, viruses filter through. The best thing you can do in that situation? Make sure any information that’s important to you is stored somewhere safe – like a cloud service (Dropbox, Google Drive).
So how do you get these tools to protect against virus effects? Most Internet providers offer their own security suites and security bundles. Call your Internet provider, and they can tell you what your options are. The good news? Because you already have their Internet service, you can usually get security services at a reduced rate.