Protecting Your Computer from Cyber Attacks

I’m sorry if I sound like a broken record but the news is regularly alerting us to threats to steal our information, access our bank accounts or take control of our computers. So what do you do about it?

Well the most recent alert says we have two weeks to sort out our computers or we could be in trouble, it may be less than two weeks depending on when you read this. There is no need to panic but you do need to get on and do the following as soon as you can.

Don’t open attachments to files you are not expecting, especially those that end in .zip. Don’t get curious “I wonder what will happen…”, just don’t open it. Same applies to other files too if you are not expecting something. You should not be opening attachments from tax office, HMRC, couriers or people you don’t know. This is not just for this threat but generally don’t open them.

It’s these attachments that run the software that installs the things hackers need to get to you computer.

I can’t emphasise enough the need for secure passwords. Too many people have passwords that can be easily cracked. Sometimes a bit too easy. Anything that has personal information is prone. See my post about creating a more secure password.

Backup, backup, backup. I really do sound like a broken record with this one. It’s not just getting hacked but your computer breaking, getting damaged or stolen. Backup and do it often and regularly. There are plenty of options to do this automatically. You won’t regret it.

Don’t keep a file with your passwords in it on your computer.

Make sure you have done your updates for software especially Windows updates and updates for other software like your internet browsers, Adobe Flash and Adobe Reader. It is a good idea to update regardless of the news of these cyber attacks. But do make sure all your software is up to date, not just the ones mentioned, they often have important security updates. I’m going to make sure all my software is up to date based on this current threat.

Also make sure your internet security software, virus checkers etc are all up to date too.

If someone calls you to tell you there is a problem with your computer and they can help you, just hang up, this is another scam to access data on your computer. Click here to see my post on that.

You need to scan your computer for this viruses known as GameOver Zeus, GoZeus, P2PZeus and CryptoLocker. Please go this page. Get Safe Online, at the bottom of their page are a number of free tools to scan for these threats and help remove them. There is also other information on that page such as if you have been affected.

About garysch

A bit of a techno nut who likes sharing what I know about technology, especially with those who struggle with it. Also through my podcast
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