Pc Security Software

Written by Kevin Tavolaro
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Several components of PC security software often work together to build multiple levels of protection around your computer. Within a few steps, you can secure your PC against intruders by implementing anti-virus software, regular updates, operating system patches, and a firewall.

The first step is to install, use, and regularly update anti-virus software. This software maintains the security of your PC by continually monitoring and evaluating all files on the system, looking for possible threats. Anti-virus programs manage this by using "virus signatures," which contain virus profiles. Each virus signature contains the identifying characteristics of a single virus. The software then contrasts these characteristics against all files existing on, or downloaded to the computer. Whenever the software determines that a file resembles a known virus, it halts all activity, and provides the user with a set of options. If the data in question is definitely a known, safe, and required file, it can be ignored. The file can also be quarantined, which means that the software keeps it out of contact with the rest of the system, until its integrity can be determined. If the file is definitely a risk, it can be deleted, after which the software will conduct a system search to locate and remedy any possible after effects from the virus.

Using PC Security Software

Every virus signature is created to deal with one specific virus. Anti-virus software developers work to stay abreast of the latest virus threats, attempting to identify and characterize them all as soon as possible. As new viruses are always emerging, it is important for anti-virus software to stay up to date. Most of this software has an "automatic update" feature, which allows your computer to regularly consult with the software provider to learn if any new viruses have appeared. Every time a new threat is identified, the program downloads the latest virus signature from the provider. Automatic updates ensure that your PC won't be left defenseless after being waylaid by an unpredictable new virus.

In addition to maintaining the performance of your anti-virus software, you should also be sure that your operating system is running at maximum efficiency. Hackers are always searching for holes to exploit in an operating system. Operating system providers are in a constant race with hackers to locate faults in the system, in order to remedy any deficiency before it can be exploited. Operating system providers build "patches," which are files used to mend any potential weakness in the system. Most systems have an automatic update feature, which allows the computer to regularly download and install the latest patches, keeping one step ahead of the hackers.

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