Miles Associates LLC

Jim Miles – IT & IT Security Consultant – Web Sites for Growing Organizations

You practice safe computing, so why do you still see malware?

…just being connected to the internet and using email or doing some web browsing especially if you do image searches is likely to expose you to this darker side of computing. Second, a number of these pieces of malware point to people becoming exposed to not infected by malware by visiting trusted web sites…

There are a few things you can do to mitigate these risks on any computer:

  • Keep your computer up to date with the latest security patches.

  • Delete email with dodgy-looking content or attachments immediately.

  • View email as plain text whenever possible. Keep Javascript, Flash, and preview features disabled.

  • Maintain your downloads folder. Go through it at the end of each session and throw out what you don’t need to keep. Move the rest of the contents to somewhere that makes sense on your computer.

  • Keep Flash, Java and JavaScript disabled in your web browser, except for sites that really need it.

  • Keep Flash, Java and JavaScript disabled in your PDF vieweras well, except for documents that really need it.

  • Use an up-to-date computer security package. If you don’t keep active scanning enabled for your computer (speed reasons, conflicts, etc), at least configure the software to scan any new content that arrives via email or shows up in your Downlaods folder.

  • Purge your caches from time to time — the simplest way to do this is often to reboot your computer. Email programs often give you the option to “rebuild archive” or “update database”, or sometimes to purge caches. Web browsers usually allow you to purge the caches manually as well, and often let you automatically purge them when you exit your browser.

Most of these suggestions can be done once, or set up and automated (like updating software). The rest are fairly easy work flow habits that will not only keep you away from many malware headaches, but will also often clean up clutter and recover disk space you didn’t know you were missing on your computer.

If nothing else, make a pledge to try for a week. For most, the benefits will significantly outweigh the inconveniences.

via You practice safe computing, so why do you still see malware? | Naked Security.

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