For a few days, you have been looking at your home computer with worried eyes : it is slow, unreasonably slow, error messages appear at random but rather often, Internet Explorer windows pop up without notice, showing ads for services you would not dare to explain to your mother… Even the mouse is slow to move.

A bit like if someone else what using the computer, but not you… Well, it may be what is actually happening. It looks like if your computer has been attacked and, indeed, submerged by a hord of viruses, trojans and other malware. It is time to act…

What I propose here is to use a couple of software available for free over the Internet, and to set them up on your computer so that they ensure, by their combination, the security of your home computer. You actually do not have to pay for your home computer security, only companies that want to centrally manage the security of thousands of computers should pay for it.

So, here we go…

1- A good basis: Windows automatic updates

That is the very first base to secure: most viruses and malware exploit faults in the Microsoft operating system to get their business done. And Microsoft regularly release patches that fix those faults and prevent those viruses and malware to run on your computer.

By setting up Windows automatic updates, you will apply to your computer all the existing patches to fix the known fault, and make sure that future patches are applied once they are release by microsoft.

Setting up Windows Automatic Update alone is not going to secure your computer, but my personal experience setting up computers on very infected networks show that once this is done, you are secured against the most virulent viruses.

In addition, regular updates help to ensure that your computer runs with fewer glitches.

On the Microsoft Web site (http://update.microsoft.com/) there are step-by-step instructions on how to set up automatic updates. Once you have completed steps you won’t have to remember when you last updated your computer.

2- A free anti-virus software

I recommend Avira antiVir personal classic edition. Please have a look at the following post : Free Antivirus software.

First install the software, and run a full scan of yur computer. Do not forget to set up an update schedule and a full scan schedule.

3- Spybot Search&Destroy against malware

I recommend Spybot Search&Destroy against malware. Please have a look at the following post : Stop worrying about malware / spyware / adware – Get Spybot Search & destroy

Especially, make sure you go through the steps detailed at the end of the post under the section “A very useful tool”, and that you run a full scan of your computer for malware.

4- Free firewall protection software

I recommend ZoneAlarm from CheckPoint. Please have a look at the post : Free home computer firewall – ZoneAlarm from CheckPoint

Here we are. Enjoy your new free security !

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