Despite the fact that there are a wide variety of different anti-virus protection available today, there are still a shockingly large number of people who spend time online without anti-virus protection on their computer. The risks are obvious-viruses and other malware are likely to rapidly infect your computer, causing the loss of files and other data and perhaps even leading to your personal information being stolen.
There are a number of people who fully believe that all that they need to do is be careful as to which websites they visit, and what they download. These people believe that they are careful enough when it comes to their browsing behavior that there is no risk at all. But this is unfortunately not true-anyone who browses the web is at risk of infection.
There are many ways in which a person can get caught out. First and foremost is when presented a link in a way that makes it look innocent. People are often aware that some links may be suspicious. But when a link is disguised or made to look very tempting, it increases the chances that the person will click it.
So too will a link that is buried in a page. When the user is busy reading something else they are more distracted, and this makes it more likely that they will click without thinking.
Viruses can even be hidden in videos or images. By simply viewing the video or the pages with the infected images on them, the virus can infect your computer. Images may not have been put there deliberately by the site owner but might be in banners that are displayed. Many of the larger sites sell advertising space to third parties, and they may use this to show infected banners to the most people possible.
So it is clear that simply being careful is not enough to keep you, your information, and your computer safe. Instead you need to be a little more proactive, and there are a number of choices for the home user.
Arguably, the best anti-virus protection is provided by the paid for anti-virus programs such as Norton and McAfee. However a home user can usually manage perfectly well with the free programs, as long as they remember to update them frequently and run full scans once a week.
AVG, Avira, Avast! and Microsoft Security Essentials are some of the biggest names in free anti-virus software. All will provide real-time protection and regular updates to ensure that all of the known viruses are protected against. When new threats are detected, new definitions are quick to be released to protect against them.
Even with a dial-up internet connection it doesn’t take long to download and install an anti-virus program. The threats are real and so catastrophic when browsing without anti-virus protection that it makes no sense to go online without it, and with such a range of prices and features available in the anti-virus software, there is something available that will suit every computer user.