How to protect your computer from dangerous viruses - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

How to protect your computer from dangerous viruses

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By Jeff Rossen and Lindsey Bomnin, TODAY

This week HBO revealed it had been the victim of a cyberattack compromising proprietary information. Earlier this year, a worldwide cyberattack hit more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries, threatening to delete peoples' files unless they paid hackers a ransom.

Would you know if there was a virus hidden inside your computer? "Most of the time [when] people install programs, they don't even realize but they come with a lot of other programs that are spying on you, that are monitoring your activities," said Yoav Erez, owner of SpeedGeek, a reputable computer care company. "You can also get it from emails, clicking on a link that you don't know."

Working with Rossen Reports, a group of volunteers handed their computers over to SpeedGeek for a free system scan. The results were revealing: "We found malware on basically half of the computers you brought us," Erez told TODAY national investigative correspondent Jeff Rossen.

To avoid malware and viruses on your computer, follow these tips:

  • Never click on pop-up ads
  • Never open email attachments from people you don't know
  • Back up all your files on an external drive

You should also always make sure to install updates to your computer's operating system: Often they protect you from getting viruses in the first place. Above, Rossen demonstrates step by step how to do it.

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