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4 basic security facts everyone should know

Roger A. Grimes | July 20, 2016
The bad news: It's you against an army of cybercriminals around the world. The good news: A little knowledge can provide an effective defense

Why is this important? Well, unless the Trojan is ransomware, Trojans are easier to remove than the other malware types. Years ago most malware programs were viruses, and getting rid of them meant removing the virus from each infected host and trying to put back the legitimate program back to its original state. It was a hard to impossible task, and it significantly complicated removal and cleaning.

These days, because most malware programs are Trojans -- as long as they aren't ransomware that hasn't already locked up your computer -- you can identify the malicious programs and remove them (although Trojans may contain self-protection techniques to hamper removal). Still, there isn't a malware removal pro or program that doesn't mind messing with Trojans as compared to the other types of malware.

3. Most people give away their logon credentials

A significant percentage of users give their legitimate logon credentials to hackers every year. Typically this happens because the user is sent a phishing email that claims to be from the legitimate website asking for credentials -- or the user will lose the service.

Never give your logon credentials in response to an email request. When in doubt, go directly to the legitimate website and see what it tells you to do. Trust the website, not the email.

4. Antivirus programs are a necessary evil

Longtime readers know I don't put a lot of faith in antimalware programs. Hackers create millions of new malicious programs each month, and signature-based antimalware can't keep up.

That doesn't mean people should disable or uninstall their antivirus program. They may not be 100 percent accurate, but they catch some malware, and for that alone, most computers should have one installed.

As I've reported several times in the recent past, I'm a big fan of periodically running running 57 antivirus programs all at once (and it's free!). A single antivirus program can't be accurate, but 57 of them together do pretty darn well.

Source: Infoworld


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