Computer Security Day reminds users to take precaution

Now more than ever, with massive amounts of computer use by parents and kids, is a good time to be on the look out for what to do and what not to do to maintain that security.

This is something to look out for on both Apple and PC products, as hackers have advanced quite a bit over the years.

General Manager at The Computer Store, Mark Jantzer said, "A lot of times what the malware folks, what the criminals want you to do, is to react quickly. So, 'you've won,' or you know, 'you're winner here's your prize,' that kind of thing gets people to click on something that in turn releases that malware."

Malware, spyware, or any virus can end up on a computer through illegal hacking or phishing.
Phishing can result in what's now known as ransomware.

Ransomware shows through e-mails, websites, or popups with the intent of gaining control of a computer and/or accessing the information on it like your bank account, credit card number, or log ins to personal accounts.

Often times it will list a phone number to call to 'cure' the malware, but I was told a company like Microsoft would never do that.

"When the IT experts talk about what's the most important thing that can be done to help people prevent being victims of malware, typically it's user education," Jantzer said.

"So it's making sure people understand that you can't just click on everything and it's going to be okay. And if it looks too good to be true, it probably is."

He said malware can even get on your computer through a website that has been unknowingly compromised by hackers, or even through an Internet provider that has had their bandwith hacked.

It's up to the computer owner to maintain antivirus protection on their computer, and to always call a local computer or IT person to have an issue dealt with.

To be safe, never call the number that pops up on your screen or email, instead look up the direct helpline to your Internet or computer company.

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