Malevolent E-Mails From Strangers

Malevolent Emails From Strangers.Even the most mundane and harmless looking junk e-mails can contain viruses in them that can do serious harm to your privacy and your beloved computer!

It’s important to understand that even just looking at some malware infected e-mail is enough to install the virus onto your machine without you even realizing it has happened.  Recently, a McKinney resident opened an infected email and brought their computer to us. We were able to clean it before damage ensued.

Your best course of action when faced with a potentially infected e-mail is to highlight it and immediately delete it.

The truth is, most businesses will not be sending you e-mails out of the blue unless you openly invited them to or have subscribed to be on their mailing list.

Most people know exactly who they are doing business with, so if rather suddenly you are receiving mysterious e-mails from people, even the ones that have your name in the subject line, at very least you can be assured that it is junk mail, if not malicious attempts to infect your computer.

Computer viruses can be transmitted in various fashions from your e-mail. For instance:

  • Requesting you to click a hyperlink within the text of the e-mail that directs you to a bogus website designed to penetrate your web browser.
  • Requesting you to enter personal information such as phone numbers, addresses or social security numbers.
  • Giving you detailed instructions to make chances to the settings of your computer in order to make it vulnerable to attack.
  • Offering phone numbers for you to call usually in the guise of preventing some form of issue, but actually attempting to rip you off or gain remote access to your computer.

These are but just a few ways for hackers or troublemakers to penetrate your security and cause you all sorts of headaches!

A good rule of thumb when dealing with unidentified e-mails is this:

  • If you do not know who it is from,
  • If they are asking for personal information, or
  • You cannot think of a legitimate reason for them to contact you … delete it without even opening it.

If it is something important they will likely call and identify their company properly! What’s the craziest scam you’ve seen? Share it with us!

The Infamous FBI Virus

Malicious FBI virus.One of the most notable computer viruses to rear its ugly head this year is the now infamous FBI virus. Frisco residents, you’re not immune!

Originally this infection appeared on seedier websites, but seems to have graduated to emails and shared files all over the internet.

It takes the form of a locking pop up screen – with the actual FBI shield and eagle crest –  and informs you that you have been caught doing illegal online activity.

To make your life ‘easier’ it offers to forgo prosecution by allowing you to pay a simple fine, over the internet, to release your desktop back to you. Of course, that is not the case.

This is a classic hijack virus that has been associated with key logger programs that capture your keystroke patterns to determine passwords. If you happen to actually use a credit card or send the money they are requesting the consequences can be worse.

At times, people have experienced limited success in removing this virus by means of standard anti-virus software, with a virus of this nature it is highly advisable to do a complete reload of the operating system to ensure no traces of the virus remain, such as key logger, or back door programs designed to allow access into your computer remotely.

PC Geeks is your local computer repair shop, and that includes cleaning the nasty FBI virus off your system. Call us if you encounter this virus and we’ll take care of it quickly!  Have you heard of this virus? Leave us your comments below.

Software updates.Plenty of folks find the prospect of doing their software updates an intimidating task.

The truth is, as long as you know what software you’re updating, these programs are built with the ability to take care of the updates themselves and really only require your permission to begin!

On the typical machine these days the most common updates you will be asked for is usually Windows, Java, Adobe and the definitions updates of your antivirus programs.

Keeping these and other software programs up to date is a vital, and proactive way to ensure that your machine is sufficiently hardened from every day computer viruses, email hacks, and operating system exploits.

More often than not, the updates for all these programs are there to correct minor glitches in their software and more importantly –  to patch vulnerabilities that have been discovered and exploited in their software. The farther behind you have become on those updates, the more likely you are to get a virus or have a hacker come along and damage your machine.

Most hackers are just looking for a vulnerable machine that they know is an easy target due to vulnerabilities in a person’s computer system. Make sure you keep your software up to date and your computer optimized with the latest patches and you will be much safer. Please call us if you have any questions about this. Leave us your comments below.

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Mean Infections and Nasty Viruses, It’s a Wild World

Man using several browsers.These days we are given a wide variety of web browsers to view our favorite websites on:

  • Internet Explorer,
  • Firefox, and
  • Chrome being the top three, are the most used at this time.

Many people tend to pick one and use it, but there is no rule in place saying you have to!

While it is true that some applications and sites do perform better with specific browsers, the vast majority of the web is perfectly usable with any browser. Why use just one?

If you want to download material try Firefox, which touts itself as faster, and more secure from computer viruses than Internet explorer. Want a browser that is lightning fast? Give Chrome a shot! If you want pretty, there is always Internet explorer which has invested quite a bit to be the best looking of the browsers available.

If you ask around, you’ll find a wide variety of opinions, from surfers and local PC technicians as to what they prefer and why; but one thing is certain, you are free to use one or all of the browsers out there to surf the web.

Virus removal.The days of just simply getting rid of that nasty virus you’ve been given by running a simple program seem to be near an end. Today’s infections are:

  • Meaner,
  • Smarter,
  • Better designed, and

A whole lot more sophisticated than they used to be.

Read more “Mean Infections and Nasty Viruses, It’s a Wild World”