Here at MacD IT Ltd we see a lot of virus and even more commonly now malware attacks on PCs and laptops. When connected to a company network this can cause major issues to the business.
One of the most recent and malicious attacks is Ransomware which infects your PC / laptop and any mapped drives you have on a server are infected and data is encrypted. If the Ransomware fully encrypts the data on the mapped drives you have 2 options, pay the Ransomware or restore the data from a backup. This is a very serious threat which we have dealt with on a number of occasions.
Below we have made a basic list of good security practice for any Windows user either at home or on a business network.
1. Have an up-to-date antivirus running on your system.
2. Leave UAC enabled, this is a feature built into Windows 8 onwards.
3. Leave Windows firewall enabled or use a third party firewall.
4. Allow Windows to install updates automatically so they don’t get forgotten about.
5. Be very vigilant about software you download and run. Always research it properly as many free programs contain harmful malware.
6. Avoid pirated and cracked software. The distributor could have written malware code in to the .exe file which can infect your computer.
7. Be aware of phishing emails. Emails claiming to be your bank or HMRC asking for information. A few common ones are flight tickets delays in the summer months, people panic and click the email thinking there is a problem with their holiday. Another common one is UPS emails at Christmas when we are all getting parcels delivered and an email comes in claiming the delivery is late with click here to track and it infects your PC. Always double check the email before opening and if it is a fake email and you have opened it delete it then run a virus and malware scan. If in any doubt seek help.
8. Passwords - don’t use the same password everywhere because if a web site is compromised and finds your login details they could try the same password to get in to your email account and if it’s the same password then your emails have been compromised. Also try and use secure passwords! A reasonable length for a password is 8 -12 characters containing upper and lower case characters numbers and symbols.
This is not a definitive list just a basic guide to keep users safe. If you found this article interesting and would like to see more please drop us a suggestion and we can publish more article on things that you would find of use.