Crucial personal computer security (antivirus, anti-malware, patching)

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I felt it necessary to have this blog as I have run into a few family and friends who didn’t practice these rules.  These are essential rules you simply must follow (on your desktops/laptops and also your phones and other devices), or you will regret it.

1 – PATCH.
Always patch your Windows software using Windows Update.  Also, pick the “all Microsoft products” so your Office and other MS apps are patched.  And, just select auto-patch if you aren’t going to be actively doing it.  There are simply too many vulnerabilities and fixes to ignore this – you must patch.  Of course, you need to be on a recent and supported version of Windows.  I’d recommend Windows 10 and to just jump in and learn it – for the very sake of staying current for security reasons.  If you are not on a current version of windows, buy a new computer – they are no longer too expensive to just replace.  Stay current.

2 – ANTI-VIRUS  http://www.avg.com/ww-en/homepage
You must run a current, good anti-virus product that also auto-updates itself.  I really like AVG and they offer a nice free package.  I also use Symantec for one of my computers as I like the general strategy of using different anti-virus products on my systems – which, in theory, offer me better coverage as that means all my data is scanned by at least two different products.

For my Android phones, I use Avast Mobile Security.

3 – ANTI-MALWARE http://www.malwarebytes.org/
In addition to anti-virus, you should be running an anti-malware product.  It covers things anti-virus does not and you will be surprised how much malware you might already have.  So download the free version (and consider buying the pro) of MalwareBytes.  It is really, really good!  Again, keep it fully updated. I also use it on my Android mobile phones.

Follow those rules and your computer life will be better than if you don’t, no doubt about it.  Once you have that covered, take the next step and remove ads and spyware.