The internet is a useful tool used for information and communication; but is also the source of many security threats. These threats are likely to cause serious damage to the person’s computer as well as cause data loss. Some of the security threats include worms, viruses, spyware and Trojans. These security threats especially viruses are transferred through sharing of infested storage devices such as flash disks, CDs, P2P networks and floppies.

The computer can also be affected through opening infected email attachments or by downloading files from unknown sources. The best way to protect the computer against threats is to ensure the operating system installed, is updated. Operating systems (OS) manufacturers often update their OS to fix security holes and other loopholes that can be used to attack the system. In addition to the updated OS, one should have a reliable antivirus installed in their computer. Since new threats are identified on a daily basis, the antivirus program should also be regularly updated. The antivirus program installed will be able to monitor transfer of files, programs and network connections for activities that appear suspicious. This allows it to keep viruses, Trojans, worms and spyware away for the computer system.

The antivirus programs can be downloaded free of charge, while there are others that are available at a fee. With many business transactions being conducted online, there are high chances of a person’s confidential information falling into the hands of computer hackers. To avoid personal data from being used by unauthorised people, internet users should install firewall programs. The firewall will keep the internet or network connections safe from computer hackers. In addition to protecting ones computer from hackers, the firewall also protects the computer from worms and Trojans. Installing an anti spyware program eliminates possibilities of data corruption. Though downloading and installing these antiviruses may appear to be a time consuming task, in the end it is worth while.

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