Did you know that there has been an increase of 87% in malware infections over the last ten years? This is a real concerning issue that every user should take note of. Being infected by malware can cause even your most important details to be leaked and sent to hackers, such as your bank accounts and credit details. Then some viruses slowly destroy your software until it is rendered useless, and you have no choice but to send it to a computer repair shop because that’s the only way it can get fixed. To prevent all that trouble, here is a guide that can help you.
Here are few ways on how to protect your gaming PC from getting any malware and viruses:
Keep your operating system constantly updated.
It is essential to download the recommended updates for your unit’s operating system to protect your gaming PC. These patches and updates aren’t released just to keep your software feeling brand new with its latest features. These updates also include security patches to fix bugs and loopholes, and vulnerabilities in the current version of your O.S., especially for new threats that were released.
Enable your Windows Defender.
Windows 8 and Windows 10 operating systems already have a built-in Windows Defender. It is built-in protection that helps detect any viruses, spyware, or malicious software and remove them. This software runs in the background, alerting you that you need to do something to secure your gaming PC. You can also use Windows Defender to scan and protect your gaming PC. However, there are certain malware that you can only detect if you run your Windows Defender offline version.
Your Windows Defender should always be enabled to help you deal with any viruses and malware trying to attack your system.
Install Antivirus or Anti-Malware Software.
There is no reason why you shouldn’t install antivirus or anti-malware software on your gaming PC. If you don’t like using Windows Defender, you can always install third-party software and tools to protect your gaming PC. And even if you don’t have any money to buy antivirus software, there is software that is actually free. Although free versions usually lack some features, they are enough to provide essential protection for your gaming PC.
However, you have to do your due diligence when installing free antivirus software or anti-malware tool. Make sure that you are downloading the software from a legitimate website. Another way to ensure that you are downloading the proper security software is to check how many people are using it. Also, check the reviews of the software. Do your research and make sure that you are going to download the right antivirus or anti-malware tool.
Make sure that the antivirus or anti-malware software you are using is continuously updated. You can enable its auto-update feature to make things easier.
Running your PC as a Standard User.
In a report published by BeyondTrust.com, 90% of vulnerabilities in Windows software can be reduced by using a standard user account instead of an admin account. If you are not so technical and don’t really understand how the security of Windows works, then it is better to create a standard user in your gaming PC and use that account. It prevents you from installing any software to your gaming PC that actually carries malware or viruses.
Suppose you are using a standard user account. In that case, you will not have any admin rights to any software installation, which will help in reducing the chances of your gaming PC getting any malware or viruses from downloading malicious software. And you don’t need to worry about anything because it doesn’t require admin privileges when running games on your rig.
Never install pirated games and software.
Pirated copies of video games, media files, and software can include codes that bring spyware or malicious software to your gaming PC. So avoid downloading any pirated software in your unit. They may save you some money in the meantime, but they can affect your gaming PC for good. On top of that, using pirated games or software is illegal. They also post several threats to your gaming PC.
Not only that, websites which offer free and pirated copies of media files, games, and software usually have malware that can be sent to your gaming PC once you try to download it. Some even require suspicious software installers because you can download the free and pirated file.
Never open suspicious emails with unsecured links and attachments.
Remember the ILOVEYOU virus, which affected more than 10 million Windows computers globally. It started as an email with the subject line “I LOVE YOU” and an attachment that makes it look like somebody sent you a love letter typed in the Notepad. Many thought it was an innocent email until they decided to download the attachment and open it, only to find that it is actually a virus that overwrites random types of files. And the scary part is it sends a copy of itself to all of the addresses in your Microsoft Outlook.
The ILOVEYOU virus incident should be enough to warn us all to never open any suspicious emails, especially those coming from brands or services you don’t know. If you don’t remember signing up from a specific brand or company and sending you an email, disregard it. Also, don’t open files that seem suspicious in the first place. Always turn on the spam detector of your email provider.
Don’t visit any unsafe websites.
Prevention is always better than cure. To avoid and prevent going to websites where you can get any malware or viruses. And at all costs, avoid downloading any content from their website or giving them important information like your email or phone number. Some websites will even offer you prizes or cash money if you download the file they advertise. But again, at all costs, don’t download anything and avoid these websites.
Another thing is to never buy from eCommerce websites or sign up on forms from websites without SSL. Websites with SSL mean that they have a security protocol that ensures an encrypted link between the web server and web browser. This is to make sure that any transactions you earn online are secured.