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Malware and Your Business

 

Computer viruses can tear your business apart, so learn how to protect yourself and your company.

This is a picture of a woman who is upset as she sits in front of her computer that has been infected with malware and now threatens her business

Malware can be a killer for a company if not carefully monitored. Once a virus is on your network, it could infect multiple computers and servers rather than just reside on the computer that received the malware initially.  There are ways to prevent malware from getting on your system, whether that is antivirus software or rules in a firewall, you will need to protect yourself or your company from malware ruining or taking down your business.

Let’s start out by asking, what is malware? Malware by definition is software used to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, or gain access to private computer systems. Malware includes computer viruses, ransomware, worms, Trojan horses, rootkits, keyloggers, spyware, adware and many others. Malware can also bring your computer performance down to a very slow crawl.

Malware is definitely not something you want to keep on your computer and malware is always changing. So, trying to keep up with removing it off your computer can be difficult if you are manually going online to look for a solution. Also, by the time you find a solution, the malware may have spread.

A proactive measure you can take is to put some antivirus action on the computer. If you are in a network environment, you can also utilize rules in the firewall to assist in blocking adware.  Sometimes it’s even a good idea to have both in a network environment. Since Malware is ever changing, it is not just enough to have the antivirus on the system, but it also needs to be constantly updated. Updates are important because there are always patches that need to be applied to defend against new strands of malware.

So what antivirus should you buy or get for free? There really is no specific answer. When you are out shopping for the antivirus, first figure out what you need it for, business or home? What size of company are you going to use it for?  Why is it important to know what size of company? The size of the company allows you to understand if you need it managed from a central computer or if you can save some money and just run the update on each computer. Then sit down and look at the top three paid versions and free versions. Remember, some of the free versions work just as well as a paid version for home use. But if you are in a business environment, the free versions are really not to be used for day to day operations, so make sure you read the user license agreement before purchasing or downloading.

Malware is no joke and can ruin a company if you don’t maintain good firewall rules, antivirus programs, and just as important, training of the employees to watch out for junk mail and unfamiliar URL’s. If you do this, you will have a good start to protecting yourself and your business.

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About Mark Hill

Mark Hill joined Sound Telecom in 2009. During his tenure, he has overseen every position within Sound Telecom's Information Technology Services group. Mark is now Sound Telecom's IT Supervisor. Mark oversees the company's entire IT infrastructure on a 24/7/365 basis. This includes the Spokane, Seattle and Denver facilities. Mark began his career in project management. He completed his IT degree in Spokane as an ITT Technical Institute graduate where he received a Bachelor of Science in Information Security Systems along with a minor in Networking Infrastructures. Mark is also a United States Navy veteran. He is a regular weight lifter and bodybuilder and enjoys spending time with his family.