What are Viruses?

A virus is a program that can embed itself into other programs on your computer, potentially causing damage to your files. Viruses often infect computers through email attachments, but can also come from CDs, websites and downloaded files.

How to Prevent Viruses

The best defense against viruses is to install an anti-virus program and a firewall. You should also:

  • Keep your operating system, browsers and anti-virus and anti-spyware software up-to-date.
  • Avoid opening and reading unsolicited e-mails. These can expose your computer to viruses. Suspicious emails may be from someone you don’t know; someone you know, but have never received email from; someone you know, but includes unexpected attachments; or someone you know, but the subject line doesn’t make sense coming from that sender.
  • Ensure that your virus scanning software automatically scans attachments, or scan them manually prior to opening them.