Anti-Virus 101

One. Don’t open attachments from people you don’t know. Most folks seem to know this one by now, but let’s call it a friendly reminder. Opening unknown attachments could be likened to sleeping with random strangers — you will get some kind of infection. It’s only a matter of when.

Two. Find something other than porn to occupy your time. Seriously. That’s where infections come from. (Yeah, I just did that.)

Three. Never, ever, ever click a popup ad that claims to be helping you with a computer problem. “Virus Detected Scan Nao!!!” Um, no. Just don’t. Call a pro, or call your local geeky teenager.

Four. Don’t rely on anti-virus software to save you from yourself. No A/V software can protect you if you don’t abide by the other rules!

Five. Beware of random media players that want to install themselves on your system so you can view some sort of content. There’s no legitimate content on the internet that can’t be viewed with your system’s default player (Windows Media Player, Totem, Xine, and whatever Apple uses…), or a good aftermarket player like VLC. Video on the web is rapidly going to HTML5, which doesn’t require a desktop application at all, but plays right in your browser natively.

Six. Keep your software up to date. Not just your anti-virus software, but all of it. This is how your software vendor patches vulnerabilities to keep you safe.

That’s all for now!