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Open It Online – Before You Open It, Make Sure It’s Safe

Dian Zain

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Although the emergence of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) is impacting lives positively, it comes with a few drawbacks. A typical threat of the 4IR is the rise of malware. There are two reasons for the rise:

First, with over 4 billion internet consumers, the bad guys (criminal societies) see a business opportunity in spreading malware. Secondly, more people are learning computer programming and testing system vulnerabilities on others computers and websites than in the past.

However, this should not be a cause for an alarm. Instead, use the information from this article to stay safe. Most programmers and institutions are doing everything to curb malware before it affects you. Here’s the snippet:

The 3 simple ways to stay safe online, in chronological order, are understanding the basics of malware, befriending your search engine, and installing the right software. Read on to find out the nitty gritty of enjoying privacy and security you need while using the trending technology.

Understand the Basics of Malware

You should grab 2 concepts under the basics of malware. First, who and why are hackers in dire need of access to your computer files? Lastly, how do common types of malware behave?

Simply put, malicious software (malware) is a computer program designed to damage data in a computer to access a network.

The program becomes malware if it is run with an ill motive. For example, the malware enables the hacker to access sensitive accounts relating to banks and other certificates, or force you to undertake criminal activities on behalf of the attacker.

 

On the other hand, keystroking to monitor employees may be harmless and the software used may not be referred to as malware. To understand better, let’s dive into the types of malware.

There are 6 main types of malware. Some of the types may share traits of the other. Here’s the simple differentiation of the types of malware.

 

Viruses are malware that gets into files of your computer and (like part of a compound) run when the files perform a task. Worms, on the other hand, force your files to perform a program.

 

Trojans are malware that waits for the victim (you, the computer use) to initiate it. Mostly, they come in online warnings that seem to care about your system.

 

Such warnings may be, “Your PC is infected with a virus! Click here to clean the virus!!” Clicking the links grant the hackers permission to control your file system.

 

Ransomware aims to encrypt your file system and hold you hostage. The hacker forces you to pay a sum of money not to destroy your most important documents.

 

Ransomware may be a virus or a trojan and the attacker may use social engineering to access your network. Adware is malware embedded in online ads.

 

Finally, spyware is malware intended to a keystroke or photo-capture your activities to see what you do at a particular time.

 

Remedy?

Befriend Google

Now that you understand how malware works, let’s find a solution to staying safe. Most search engines, like Google, educate you on malware forms as they frequently take various forms. They do more in addition to striving to educate their users.

For example, the Google Safe Browsing program warns you of suspicious links and websites before you click them. The Google Transparency Report lets you stay safe with emails, from adware and many forms of malware. To propel your security, here’s the more exciting part:

Use Anti-Malware

Being vigilant to links you open online may be a daunting task. Worse yet, tracking articles by Google’s Safe Browsing may be impossible or time-consuming.

This calls for anti-malware, a software that scans, sandboxes, destroys, and (mostly) backups up your files in the cloud. Besides using the cloud for business infrastructure, the cloud is a safe store for your sensitive files, in case of a malware attack.

There is a chunk of great anti-malware with typical qualities. For example, read more about Kaspersky to find out why you may or never use it afterward.

Conclusion

The increase and dynamism of malware pose risks to your computer. Although many tech firms like Microsoft work hard to curb cyberattacks, their efforts are futile if you don’t share a role in the equation.

First, understand the technological and psychological behavior in malware development and spread. Secondly, adhere to warnings by your search engine. Lastly, use a typical anti-malware for peace of mind, and improved online security.

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