/* * BNE Testimonials Additional Schema Tags * * Depending on the schema_type used for what is being reviewed, * you may want to add additional specific schema tags. For example, * if using "LocalBusiness", the following would be recommended. * * Requires BNE Testimonials Pro v2.8.3+ */ add_filter( 'bne_testimonials_schema_additional_tags', function() { // Phone $tags = ''; // Price Range $tags .= ''; // Address (Adjust for your specific geo-location) $tags .= ''; $tags .= ''; $tags .= ''; $tags .= ''; $tags .= ''; $tags .= ''; return $tags; });

Protecting your Computer from Ransomware and Malicious Viruses

Are You Vulnerable to Ransomware and Malicious Viruses? Protecting your Computer from Ransomware and Malicious Viruses There are people out there looking to create as much havoc as they can using malicious programs. Whether it is for financial gain or simply for love of chaos, whatever their reason for creating these harmful programs they are out there. Are You Vulnerable to Viruses? Consequently, we are all vulnerable to an attack, but there are ways we can protect ourselves and our data?

Are You Vulnerable to Viruses like Ransomeware?

Handsome ware can be installed by just landing on the wrong website. Programers promoting ransomware will make a website that looks like a site your interested in the website so you click to see it. Instantly your computer is making noises or your antivirus is screaming at you to get off the site. If you have any suspicion about the site or need help call your trusted computer repair lab like Ballard Computer to get help right away. RAndsome ware has fallen to the best of companies holding them hostage for ransom. Without a good back up of your data, there is often no recourse to not pay the ransom amount. But, if you have your data backed up you’re in the sweet spot to getting your data and no Ransome ware payment will be needed.  Do I have a reliable back up system? Protect yourself and call BallareComputer to get answers to your question. Is my network secure?

Are You Vulnerable to Viruses like Malicious Viruses?

Usually unsuspecting invasion of your computer. Downloading that coupon to save some money. Downloading a game, or a recipe. These are a few ways to get a little more than you agreed upon with the download. Once your computer has the virus it starts phoning home and communicating with other malicious activity in other countries. The US has no jurisdiction and can not help if they take all the money in your account down to the last penny. That is why updating your antivirus daily is the best protection. However, it is not always known to the antivirus companies of this virus. The virus might be new and no program has been written to combat this particular string of virus. So the virus has the connection to other computers and now starts to do malicious things in the background taking up your valuable space on your hard drive for their pleasure. And will start to overwrite your precious data if it needs the space to grow. Symptoms of a computer that has a Virus, Slow to start, slow to save documents or images etc, Multiple error messages. Antivirus is not able to do the latest updates.

The first step is basic and that is to make sure the firewall is enabled within your computer and keep your antivirus up to date daily before you start your internet searches. This is not expensive Windows 10 includes windows defender, it is free and regularly updated. Just click “update now” when it is offered, ensuring you have the most updated version available. Moreover, in addition to these steps, we should back up system in place and back up your system regularly. Data storage options include storing the info in the cloud, an external hard drive, a USB or in a file on another computer and account.

Nevertheless, even the most prudent among us can fall victim to these malicious programs, but a few reminders to limit your exposure may prove beneficial. Such as don’t click on links sent in an email, this is especially true of email from unknown sources. You may also want to confirm links from known sources, a common tool used by these jerks is hacking into your contacts list to give you a false sense of security. Sweet Aunt Betty would never send you a link full of malicious, destructive malware, but a hacker using her name will.

 A few other suggestions to help protect your computer:

Use strong passwords, using a simple sequence of numbers such 12345678 or the word password, for your password is not protecting your data it is an open invitation. Another dangerous practice is using the same password and username on multiple sites if a hacker cracks one this practice can allow them to access all your accounts. Your password should be at least 8 characters long, also the use of simple phrases, separated by symbols or underscore such as Dogs#sleep#&@alot make easier to remember passwords, or better yet there is a Low-cost service called LastPass that will create strong passwords and store them for you. This is a great service, you are required only to remember your LastPass Username and passcode,

Are You Vulnerable to Public Wifi?

Whether it is our favorite coffee shop or diner we love the convenience of public wifi. Unfortunately, there is a risk attached to the use of Public Wi-fi, a hacker can set up near you and intercept your connection allowing them to steal the information you are sending, to access your accounts at will later. Consequently, this can cause major problems for the user and even their business. Moreover, hackers can even use this unsecured connection to spread malware creating a major problem, if the user allows sharing on a network, the malware could infect all the computers in the network. 

When using public wifi use the HTTPS choice on websites that you access frequently or ask you for personal data, and again avoid using the same username and passwords on multiple accounts. Especially, when using unsecured public wifi connections. Turn off sharing mode moreover, when not in use keep the wifi turned off. This simple step will keep others from accessing your data without your knowledge.

Using a VPN which stands for virtual private network connection is your best option when accessing unsecured connection such as a wi-fi hotspot for business activities. The data is strongly encrypted so even if a hacker can intercept it, trying to decrypt it would be a long process and the hacker would most likely toss it out and look for easier pickings.       

Use a pop-up ad blocker and if any ads get through do not click on them. Minimize downloads as they can download a major virus or malware into your computer. Some signs that you may already have a problem, such as a computer running slow, laptop battery draining faster than normal, repeated error messages, moreover new tools on the toolbar that you did not install or changes to your homepage. Any of these should be considered a call to action, I would suggest running a malware scan. I use the free version of Malwarebytes.  To stay safe if you think you are vulnerable to viruses, it is a good practice to run a malware program on your computer regularly. Nevertheless, once you start seeing these warning signs, please consider taking your computer into a trusted computer tech, for virus removal and data recovery, the longer the virus or malware runs unchecked on your system the more damage they can cause.

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