Steps to help prevent or detect a virus.
To protect your PC from viruses, it is important to know a few security basics. The first is that the biggest threat to your computer is the Internet. Because modern internet connections are always on, there are constant security threats. However, the second thing to remember is that almost all virus attacks can be prevented. With proper anti-virus and firewall software, PC viruses can be prevented.
Anti-virus software is your computer's first line of defense against any intruding program or file that may contain malicious applications. The role of anti-virus software is twofold: it monitors activity and downloaded content, and also scans your hard drive for any files it may have missed.
A firewall is a connection management tool that limits access to your networked information by third parties. A firewall is an essential tool to keep websites and third parties from gathering information about you from files you have stored on your computer. Firewalls also keep you protected from third parties downloading unintended files, such as viruses, to your computer. Many operating systems come with built in firewalls.
Monitor Your E-mail
One of the biggest ways that viruses and spyware are transmitted is through e-mail. It is essential to have a virus scan that checks attachments and messages for potentially harmful files. Most modern web-based e-mail servers (like Yahoo! and MSN) have their own anti-virus software, but if you use a program like Microsoft Outlook to gather your mail, it is good to have another e-mail-focused anti-virus program that can scan your messages as they are received.
Visit only Trustworthy Sites
Although this seems like common sense, search engines like Google and Yahoo! make it easy to click on a website that you have never heard of. Always make sure to only visit sites you trust, and if the site is flagged by a search engine, don't go near it.