In our world full of technology, there are many different nuisances we must often over come to enjoy the leisure that our electronics bring us. Some of these problems are peskier than others, and some can even be detrimental to our confidentiality.
Sometimes computers can seem like they have a mind of their own. Watching something load for a long time is tedious, trying to recover documents after an unexpected shutdown can be worrisome, but your overall experience should be pretty smooth.
Viruses make things a little more irritating. They can come in many different forms: spam emails, downloading something accidently, or just by visiting an unsafe site. Luckily, they often leave tell-tale signs that your computer is infected.
If you feel like you have any of these issues, and would like assistance with a possible virus, fill out the question form at bottom of the page, or the “Get In Touch” button on the bar at the top of your screen.
Device slows down/consistently stays slow: ex. Starting your computer takes much longer than normal, web pages load as if you still had dial up.
You find programs installed that you didn’t download yourself: ex. Phony anti-virus programs, suspicious documents, and maybe even download options that will lead to nothing but further hassle
Pop-ups that seem legitimate may often appear, urging to download virus protection or to contact your internet provider: ex. Unofficial virus protection programs will warn of a “virus” and suggest you download something, troubleshooting pop ups will say you owe money and can’t connect until you pay or contact your provider
Constant “update error” windows: ex. Simple tasks are greeted with error messages, loading your normal online amenities becomes problematic
A default setting is changed on its own: ex. Your search engine changes to something unfamiliar, your desktop background changes entirely
Programs seem to load incorrectly or run poorly: ex. Whether your gaming or drawing up designs in CAD, something seems off; programs rarely slow down on their own accord
You notice search bars and other tools and extensions that you didn’t install: ex. A common example of this is a small search bar that appears on the side of your browser, or a pop up search engine that nags you constantly
Your home page or internet browser has changed: ex. Most people have a preferred search engine, or a website that they like to browse when they first open the internet; a virus can change that preference
Access to your online accounts is lost: ex. Most sites containing personal information are password protected; viruses can change your passwords, disable your online accounts, or even steal your personal information
Online accounts send messages to others without you doing it: ex. Friends on social media sites start receiving messages from you that seem strange, your account makes posts automatically, often times with links for others to click
While all these problems cause a headache, it’s important to remember viruses can also do more damage than slowing down your favorite streaming site. Some viruses are more malicious and can steal personal information such as passwords and debit/credit card numbers.
Many viruses look legitimate, so be careful what you click.
If you notice your device acting strangely, maybe it’s time to take some precautions. Let us go Above & Beyond to solve all of your computer problems by filling out the question form below.
Next week we’ll post an article about virus prevention and steps you can take to secure your information.