Category Archives: How To

Windows 10 Failing To Install KB4023057 Update: How To Fix

To improve performance and stability, Microsoft regularly releases software updates for Windows 10. We all know that Windows 10 updates always have one or the other issue. Well, this time around an old patch namely KB4023057 has been re-released which is causing installation error.

So here’s everything you need to know about the issues with KB4023057 update and the possible solutions to them.

ALSO READ: No Audio Output Device Is Installed In Windows 10- FIX October 2018

KB4023057 Update Failed To Install

Recently, Microsoft released an update named as KB4023057 for computers running on Windows 10 April 2018 update or earlier. Consequently, anyone with the latest October 2018 Update didn’t receive the KB4023057 patch.

The KB4023057 update was meant to offer improvements to Windows Update reliability. In addition to that, this update also helped free up disk space by compressing files in the user’s directory and clearing up space for further Windows updates.

Surprisingly, this new update had a release date of 2018-11 and it was already installed on a majority of Windows 10 computers. So once the download completes the KB4023057 is failing to install with an ‘Error 0x80070643’. The update also informs a user that a newer version of the patch is already present on the system.

KB4023057 Update: How To Fix

It is worth noting that a very small percentage of Windows users have been affected by this security update. That said, if you are one among those affected users you can try uninstalling the current KB4023057 patch and then update to the newly arrived patch.

A Redditor suggested an easy way to do this.

  • From your Start menu, go to Windows System, Control Panel, Programs.
  • You will see KB4023057 listed as a program.
  • Uninstall it from there.
  • Then go back to Windows Update and push the button to check for updates.
  • It will update to install the 2018-11 version.

Most probably the issues with KB4023057 patch will now get fixed.

The post Windows 10 Failing To Install KB4023057 Update: How To Fix appeared first on TechWorm.

How to secure your cloud file storage with 5 simple tricks

File hosting / cloud storage services today are a dime a dozen. Players in this vertical constantly top each other with free storage offerings, business features, and custom plans, all designed to cater to every possible audience. But they all have one thing in common: the cloud.

Cloud storage is somewhat of a double-edged sword: it’s a convenient way to keep your entire fleet of devices in sync, but it can also spell disaster if someone finds the keys to your vault. Remember the celebrity nudes leak a few years ago? Yeah. You don’t want that ‘fappening’ to you. So it’s a good idea to remind ourselves that cloud storage services like iCloud, Dropbox and Google Drive are not impenetrable. Your vendor can only do so much to protect you. ‘The Fappening’ was mostly the result of those celebrities falling victim to phishing emails. So it’s important to enable extra safeguards to avoid falling victim to scams that steal your password. In this guide, we’ll look at five practices to secure your cloud content and keep your digital life away from prying eyes.

Step 1 – Verify your email and/or phone number

This may draw a resounding “d’oooh” from power users, but you’d be surprised how many people forget their login credentials, especially those who aren’t online 24/7. Checking and confirming your email address with your vendor also helps you recover a forgotten password, so consider this simple step a double-whammy. Most cloud services also let you change the email associated with your account so, if you want to start anew, look for the module that lets you tweak this setting. It’s typically located under “account settings” or “security.”

Dropbox offers the option to quickly change the email associated with your account

If you have a phone number associated with your account, verify that one as well, and remember to update it if you end up changing your number for any reason. It ensures you’re always reachable on another device for two-factor authentication, important notifications that may involve security matters, and other exceptional situations.

Step 2 – Review, add, or remove devices, browsers and linked apps

Most cloud services offer a handy list of all devices linked to your account. If you’re a longtime user, chances are you’ve swapped devices a few times over the years. So, don’t be surprised if the list names a Windows Vista machine, or your old BlackBerry Bold. While vendors do their best to monitor your account for suspicious activity, it’s a good idea to unlink any old devices you no longer use. The same goes for different web browsers associated with your account, or linked apps that integrate with the service. If you no longer use those apps, there’s no reason for your account to keep ties with them. Who’s to say they don’t suffer a breach one day and leak your credentials?

Devices associated with a Google Drive account
This is how iCloud displays your devices. Simply click on the device’s name for more options to manage them, including to disassociate one or more with your account (for example, if you’ve sold your phone to someone).
An example of linked apps in Dropbox

Step 3 – enable two-factor-authentication (2FA)

Two-factor-authentication, typically abbreviated as 2FA, adds another layer of security to your online accounts. It allows the service to verify that the person logging in is really you by asking you to confirm a code on another device that you own. Wonder when this comes in handy? The 2014 iCloud hack could have been almost entirely avoided had those celebs used 2FA.

So be sure to flip this switch on for every online service you have an account with, especially your cloud storage services. Most vendors today offer this option, and some even have it on by default. But for those services that don’t have 2FA enabled from the start, be sure to dig through the settings and turn it on. It’s a life saver!

iCloud asks to check your phone for a six-digit passcode

Step 4 – have good password hygiene

Yes, it’s a drag, but you should still do it. Data breaches are so common these days that it’s become a matter of when, not if, one of your online accounts gets compromised. And cloud accounts are easily the most sensitive ones. It’s also wise to use a strong password when you decide to change it. Use a combination of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, as well as special characters (#$%*). And remember, eight characters is the absolute minimum by today’s standards.

If you don’t trust your memory with such a complex string of characters, perhaps it’s time you considered using a password manager. There’s no shortage of options out there. Plus, it’s advisable to use different passwords with different online accounts, in case your credentials end up for sale on the dark web following a breach.

Microsoft even offers a way to go password-less with its OneDrive file-hosting service. All you need to do is download the Authenticator app for iOS or Android. “It’s more convenient and more secure,” according to the software giant. OneDrive users can also tick a box and have Microsoft remind them to change their password once every 72 days.

Changing a password in OneDrive. Microsoft offers tips on how to set a strong password, as well as the option to get nagged from time to time to change it.

Step 5 – Always sign out!

The exclamation mark above is easily justified. ALWAYS sign out of your account when you access your file storage service in a web browser, especially on an external device. For instance, Dropbox stays logged in forever, even after you close the tab in your browser – a big oversight on behalf of a service with more than 500 million users. Nevertheless, end-users shoulder the responsibility of keeping their accounts secure. If someone else has access to your computer, whether at home or at work, they can easily peek into your private life with a few keystrokes and clicks. Maybe you have nothing to hide, but why would want someone peeking at your photos without you knowing? So remember to always hit that “sign out” button when you’re done.

Stay safe

These are just a few simple tricks to help you keep your digital life safe. We could mention other things as well, like choosing security questions and answers that can’t be easily guessed (for password recovery), or keeping an eye out for phishing scams that impersonate your cloud vendor. But as a rule of thumb, these five tips are all you need to stay on the safe side.

The folks at Apple prefer to keep iCloud users away from the technicalities and randomly trigger two-factor-authentication every now and then to verify that no one has hijacked your account. They even show you how to avoid phishing emails and other scams so you don’t mistakenly give someone the keys to your iCloud. Dropbox has a comprehensive security checkup module that lets you do most of the above in one shot. And Google and Microsoft offer handy “Authenticator” apps with their respective services (Google Drive and One Drive).

While businesses may be reluctant to store their intellectual property on remote servers, public clouds are nonetheless a decent option for regular users. So go ahead and apply these five tricks to your preferred cloud storage app or service. You’ll be glad you did. Stay safe out there!

Here are The Internet Security Blogs You Should Follow Today [Updated 2019]

If you are concerned about your online security (and you should), it’s essential to know which are the best cybersecurity blogs that could help you stay informed about the most recent trends in the threat landscape.

The question then arises: Where can you find the best security blogs to learn and to gain more knowledge in the cybersecurity field? What security experts to follow so you can stay abreast of changes in this industry and how to better protect your digital assets? How can you make the difference between the real experts and the false ones?

That’s why we want to help and we’ve put together this list with all the cybersecurity blogs and websites that are worth following.

We’re aware that it isn’t perfect and will never be, so we’ll continue to keep this list updated as much as we can. There are probably so many other security blogs and experts that we have not included. More and more are launching every day.

Can you tell what other blogs should we add to this list and what you think about the current ones?

From small, independent researchers and experts, to the big names: security vendors, media giants, organizations or cybersecurity communities and organizations. The main criteria were how much can we benefit from their insights and knowledge.

Therefore, if you need best practices, how-to articles, online safety research or the latest security news and insights from researchers, start with this guide. Feel free to bookmark our article and access the following blogs/websites whenever you feel it’s necessary.


1. Krebs on Security

Brian Krebs is the man behind Krebs on Security. Being hacked himself in 2001, he starts to be personally interested in online security. He’s one of the well-known names in today’s security landscape. Krebs covers topics from the latest threats, privacy breaches, and cyber-criminals, as well as major security news and alerts. He’s also a book author.

2. Schneier on Security

Another cybersecurity blog that is worth reading on a daily basis is the one belonging to Bruce Schneier which is an internationally renowned security technologist, called a “security guru” by The Economist. He wrote books, hundreds of articles, essays and security papers on cybersecurity. At the same time, he is a known figure in the media.

The press recognizes him as an important voice for online security, not only for his knowledge on the matter but also because of how he expresses his opinions.

3. Tao Security

Tao Security is run by Richard Bejtlich, which is an advisor to the security ecosystem for the Treat Stack company and a former Chief Security Strategist at FireEye. He’s also an author of many books on the security topic. He started his career as a military intelligence officer at the Air Force Computer Emergency Response Team, Air Force Information Warfare Center and Air Intelligence Agency.

With an extensive background in the cyber-criminal world and familiar with malicious attacks on enterprise networks, he shares his experience on digital defense and network monitoring. Since a great number of network attacks come from China, he is specialized in Chinese online criminals.

4. Graham Cluley

Graham Cluley is one of the most known independent computer security analysts and public speakers. He’s been working in the industry since the early ‘90s. Started as a programmer, writing the first ever version of Dr. Solomon’s Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows. Afterward, he had senior roles in Sophos and McAfee.

5. Troy Hunt

Troy Hunt is an Australian Microsoft Regional Director and Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for Developer Security. He travels the world speaking at events and giving training and advice to tech security professionals. He’s also an author of many top-rating courses on web security.

You surely heard about his project Have I Been Pwned?”, a free service that tells you if you’ve been compromised in a data breach.

6. Daniel Miessler

Daniel Miessler is a well-known cybersecurity expert and writer with 20 years in information security. His blog includes a collection of technical knowledge, industry insights, and opinions shared by Daniel on various topics. We recommend adding his blog on your reading list for valuable insights, and also follow him on Twitter.

7. Security Affairs

Security Affairs is a security blog written by Pierluigi Paganini, an ethical hacker, researcher, security evangelist, and analyst. On his blog, among the articles on security, you’ll also find regular interviews with hackers, useful cybersecurity In 2016, this blog was awarded as Best European Personal Security Blog

8. Architect Security 

This cybersecurity blog belongs to April C. Wright which is a speaker, teacher, community leader and hacker with more than 25 years experience in the information security industry. She teaches others how to use simple actions that can lead to a better and safer place.

9. Dark Reading

Dark Reading is a widely-read cyber security website that addresses professionals from the IT industry, security researchers, and technology specialists. They use their experience and knowledge to provide articles, recommendations, news and information on IT cybersecurity landscape.

10. CIO

CIO is the place where you find news, information technology articles, insights and analysis on major data breaches and online threats that put your online security at risk. Covering multiple aspects of world wide web, it provides in-depth, content-rich information for IT professionals and regular users.

11. CSO Online

CSO focuses on offering users the latest information and best practices in both technology and business, loss prevention, cybercriminal threats, and software vulnerabilities, malware and data breaches and many other useful tips and advice about cybersecurity.

12. PCMag’s Security Watch

Known for his direct and witty style, Neil Rubenking is PC Magazine’s Lead Analyst. He’s the man you have to listen if you search for technical advice on the main security solutions, from firewalls, antivirus, and antispam products to full security suites. You’ll also read in this cybersecurity blog detailed reports and sharp analysis of security programs, which should place him on your follow “cybersecurity blogs” list if you look for this type of information. He has also written several books.

13. Paul’s Security Weekly

This security blog was founded by Paul Asadoorian and brings you a wide range of topics from security news, useful technical articles, research studies to valuable information on hacking and cybercrime through different channels, from blog posts, videos to podcasts.

14. Forbes

This is one of the leading media company in the online environment and provides strong analysis, reliable tools, real-time reports for cybersecurity news and information on the latest online vulnerabilities.

15. SC Magazine

SC Magazine comes in the IT environment with technical information and data analysis to fight the present online security threats. Their site provides testing results for email security, mobile devices, cloud, and web security.

16. PCMag

Probably one of the most popular tech sites in the software industry, PC Mag offers readers lots of reviews and studies on the latest products for online security. For an objective analysis of a particular product you may be interested in, don’t forget to search for the dedicated article on this website.

17. The Hacker News

It is one of the biggest information security blogs and we recommend following it for the latest resources about hacking, technology, and security.

18. Security Week 

It’s one of those information security blogs you need to follow to stay informed about the latest security news, insights and analysis. You’ll also read opinions and insights from IT security experts around the world.

19. Ars Technica

Probably one of the oldest and top publications on technology. Its editorial mission is to be “technically savvy, up-to-date and more fun” than what was popular at the moment when it was founded.

20. Softpedia

Softpedia is a popular destination for software downloads but also covers tech topics and news. It was founded in 2001 by SoftNews NET SRL, a Romanian company.

21. The Last Watchdog 

It is one of those security blogs founded by the Pulitzer-winning journalist Byron V. Acohido which is a respected cybersecurity influencer, and The Last Watchdog is considered to be one of the top cybersecurity blogs. You’ll find personal opinions on cybersecurity, Q&A, useful podcasts or videos. 

22. Wired

One of the classical American online magazines reporting on technology and its role in culture, economy and politics, Wired approaches various topics on online privacy, cybercriminal threats, systems security and the latest security alerts.

23. Motherboard Vice

Vice’s Motherboard is an online magazine dedicated to technology, science, and humans. Lots of the data breaches in the past years were firstly announced by Motherboard and you should follow it.

24. Mashable

Mashable is a global media company, founded in 2005. They aim to be the leading media company for the Connected Generation and the voice of digital culture. We recommend following their cybersecurity category to read about all the latest news related to this field.

25. Techcrunch

TechCrunch is another leading media company focused on technology and breaking tech news, founded in the same year as Mashable and owned by AOL.

26. IT Pro Portal

It Pro Portal is one of the first tech websites from the UK, launched in 1999 and has grown to become one of UK’s leading resources on technology information. Here you’ll find tech products reviews, market analysis, cyber security news and many more.

27. Privacy Paradox from Lawfare

When law meets privacy – this is how we’d sum up “Privacy Paradox”, the subsection of The Lawfare Blog. Its authors take an unorthodox look at the law and policy of contemporary privacy.

28. The Register

The Register is another top online tech publication, with more than 9 million monthly unique visitors. You’ll find here independent news, views, and reviews on the latest in the IT industry and its security section brings the latest news from the industry.

29. TechRepublic

TechRepublic provides large resources for the online industry, such as blog articles, forums, technical papers, and security data. All the valuable information available on this cybersecurity blog will help IT professionals and technology leaders to come with the best decisions on their business processes. There are also useful resources such as white papers, eBooks, tools and more.

30. Zero Day

The Zero Day security blog is important for all the people part of the IT industry. This information security blog belongs to ZDNet and you should follow it to stay on top of the latest security analysis, software vulnerabilities, malware attacks, and network threats.

31. The Guardian Information Security Hub

Known for its quality articles on world news, Guardian also provides a section dedicated to information security for both companies and individuals. To stay up-to-date with the most recent articles and news on cybersecurity, make sure you follow this cybersecurity blog.

32. Help Net Security

Help Net Security is a popular independent site, focused on information security since 1998. You’ll find here the latest information and articles related to the IT industry, including experts’ opinion on the hottest topics, reviews, security events, and many more.

33. Techworld Security

Techworld is an industry leader in business technology publishing, published by IDG (International Data Group). The Security section is dedicated to analyzing the latest malware threats and zero-day exploits, including analysis and tutorials. You can find here other important topics and subjects, such as security articles, how-to documents or software reviews.

34. IT Security Guru

It is a site for cybersecurity community which offers daily and breaking IT security news, with opinions and analysis of this industry.

35. Network Computing

The content of the Network Computing cybersecurity blog focuses on cloud technology and enterprise infrastructure systems. Its published articles cover security solutions on how to deliver applications and services for an increasingly large threat environment in the business world, news and expert advice.

36. Infosecurity Magazine

With more than 10 years of experience, Infosecurity Magazine is an online magazine which covers not only security articles on popular topics but is also focused on security strategy and valuable insights for the online industry. You should follow it for its educational approach.

37. SANS Institute AppSec Blog

SANS Software Security provides training, certification, research and community initiatives that help IT specialists build secure applications.

38. Peerlyst

Peerlyst is a community for where cybersecurity professionals gather to discuss hot topics and exchange opinions on key subjects. As part of the community’s mission, the team is “working with people like you to help transcend the fragmented security market and create transparency”.

39. Europol 

While it’s not actually a cybersecurity blog, it is worth following and reading the newsroom section from the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (EUROPOL) and stay up to date with the latest press releases, news articles, blog entries, videos, and other content.

40. Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) 

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is the leading nonprofit organization defending civil liberties in the digital world which was founded in 1999. Its work is mainly focused on ensuring that rights and freedoms are enhanced and protected as our use of technology grows. You should read their information security blog for its high-quality content, comprehensive analysis, educational guides, and more.

41. Virus Bulletin

The Virus Bulletin blog is a must-read online source of reference for anyone concerned with computer security and online threat landscape. It covers the latest threats, new developments, and techniques in the security landscape, opinions from well-known members of the industry, and more.

42. StaySafeOnline

This security blog is powered by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA)  organization and is a reliable online source that provides valuable information on how you can stay safe online, how to keep your business secure and many other useful tips and insights on privacy.

43. Security Boulevard

It is the home of the Security Bloggers Network (SBN) and an online community where you can find plenty of useful resources from fresh cybersecurity news, threats and data breaches to webinars, a library of security-related resources, and many other educational resources.

44. Bleeping Computer

Another fantastic resource is Bleeping Computer, a technical support website, and a self-education tool. Do read their cybersecurity guides, forums, tutorials and more.

45. IT Security

Here’s another useful information security resource where you can read about cybersecurity news, insights and experts’ opinions on topics related to the cybersecurity landscape.

46. GBHackers on Security

It is another great online resource where you can read about the latest hacking news, cybersecurity, technology updates, ransomware or malware. There’s also the place where you can find useful online courses and other interesting infosec resources.

47. BetaNews

Here’s another leading source of technology news and analysis you can follow to stay up to date with everything happening in cybersecurity.


48. State of Security

TripWire delivers advanced threat, security and compliance solutions to companies. State of Security is TripWire’s blog on cybersecurity and the place where you can read about the latest cybersecurity news, podcasts, videos, and many more useful resources. Multiple authors write on it about the constantly changing landscape of cybersecurity.

49. Naked Security

Naked Security is an award-winning newsroom that offers us news, opinions, advice, and research on computer security issues and the latest cyber threats. The blog belongs to the security company SOPHOS and there are topics from mobile security threats to operating systems or malware articles.

50. F-Secure Safe & Savvy Blog

Safe & Savvy is a cybersecurity blog from F-Secure, a company focused on online content and privacy protection issues. On this security blog you will find plenty of handy tips and tricks on security issues, how to keep your data safe and many other resources such as videos, infographics or reports.

51. Hot For Security

Another information security blog you should add to your list is the Hot For Security which belongs to Bitdefender security company. Bitdefender is one of the leading and most-known companies on online security solutions. On their blog, they cover various subjects related to cybersecurity and privacy, from Internet scams, online spam, and phishing detection, to malware and data-stealing software.

52. Malwarebytes Labs

The Malwarebytes cybersecurity blog includes articles that cover the latest malware threats and cybercriminal attempts from the online world. You can find their articles on categories, from cybercrime, exploits, hacking and malware analysis.

53. We Live Security

We Live Security, the Eset blog, is an online resource for cybersecurity articles and probably one of the best cybersecurity blogs providing a large network of security topics from emerging online threats to zero-day exploits.

54. ThreatPost

Threatpost is an independent news site where you can read a plethora of cybersecurity news and analysis to stay informed and safe, including useful videos, feature reports and many more.

55. Kaspersky Lab’s Securelist

Securelist is a security blog run by Kaspersky Lab which addresses a large audience, providing some of the best security subjects on cyber criminal activities and data-stealing malware. There is plenty of great cybersecurity information you’ll read here from malware, spam and phishing to statistics and an encyclopedia to search for definitions and learn new cyber sec terms.

56. Symantec Blogs

Symantec Blogs is an expanded blogging platform which belongs to one of the biggest providers of security solutions worldwide, Symantec. This information security blog offers users the latest security news, unparalleled analysis from experts on the online threats affecting businesses today,  articles on security threats, online criminals, data-stealing malware, system vulnerabilities, and many others.

57. Fox IT Security Blog

Fox-IT’s security blog is a very good source of information on online security, technology news and cybercrime defense. This security blog is owned by Fox-IT, a Dutch security firm that works with trusted partners in more than 35 countries.

58. Securosis

Securosis is a security research and advisory company that offers security services for companies and organizations. At the same time, you can find on their security blog some useful articles and insights on how you can better manage and protect your online data.

59. Google Online Security Blog

We couldn’t miss this one from our list! We are surrounded by Google products and services every day, from their search engine to web browser, so it’s normal to include their cybersecurity blog here. It is more than a reliable information security blog; it’s also a reference point on online security and privacy we need to acknowledge. Here you can also read the latest news and insights on how to keep users safe.

60. ZoneAlarm Cyber Security Blog

This cybersecurity blog is from ZoneAlarm, which is one of the well-known vendors of security products providing valuable information on malware defense and online security to protect millions of PC users. Using their experience on malware, this security blog publishes malware alerts, practical security tips and the latest news in the IT industry.

61. McAfee security blog

McAfee information security blog provides the latest tips and techniques from various security experts to keep you up-to-date with the latest malware trends in the online environment.

62. Microsoft Secure Blog

Starting January 2018, this is the place where you’ll find all the blogs from Microsoft. Here you’ll find technical information for Office 365, Microsoft Azure, and Windows, alongside product updates, cybersecurity guidance, industry trends, and more. You’ll also read great cybersecurity stories from the global team of Windows Defender researchers, engineers, and experts.

63. SpiderLabs Security Blog

Investigators and researchers at Trustwave cover the latest technology news on this cybersecurity blog. Gathering information from research and testing, they publish articles and security studies to fight online hackers and cyber-criminal threats.

64. Dell SecureWorks

SecureWorks is a company that provides information security services and became part of Dell in 2011 and branched off as a public organization in April 2016. Their cybersecurity blog provides the latest news and information for IT professionals and users that need to stay up-to-date with online threats and malware attacks.

65. Trend Micro Simply Security

Trend Micro Simply Security information security blog offers expert insights on cloud security, data safety, privacy protection, and threat intelligence. You’ll also find research and analysis, and the latest news on the cybersecurity industry.

66. ThreatTrack Security

ThreatTrack security blog keeps you up-to-date with the latest innovations and developments in the IT industry, from security exploits to software vulnerabilities and cyber-criminal attempts.

67. Sucuri Security 

This information security blog is held by the security company called Sucuri, which is managed by two highly passionate individuals in this industry, Daniel and Tony. It is a great online resource where you can learn about site security, emerging vulnerabilities, and web malware infections.

68. Comparitech 

This information security blog is from the company Comparitech Limited, which has the mission to help consumers make more savvy decisions when they subscribe to tech services such as VPNs, antivirus and security products, cloud backup, password managers and more. Read their blog to read more about VPN, privacy, information security and more.

69. AlienVault

It is a company security company focused on enabling all organizations to better detect and manage cyber attacks in the cloud. Their blog offers cybersecurity fresh news on the latest emerging global threats and actionable advice to simplify threat management and compliance.

70. Sensors Tech Forum

Another information security blog you should add on your list is Sensors Tech Forum, which is both an online security blog and a forum. Here you can read daily PC security news, ransomware and virus removal guides. The Sensors Tech team publishes useful guides that could help users get through the removal process of malware.

71. IT Governance UK

IT Governance is a leading global provider of IT governance, risk management and compliance solutions, with a focus on cyber resilience, data protection, and cybersecurity. On its cybersecurity blog, you’ll read plenty of useful articles on GDPR, online privacy,  as well as podcasts and toolkits.

72. Quick Heal Blog

This security blog belongs to Quick Heal TechnologiesmLtd., which is a pioneer of antivirus research and development in India. On the blog, you will find the latest IT security news, alerts and other useful tips.

73. ScienceSoft Blog

Another security blog that you should check out is this one from Science Soft, a US-based provider of IT consulting services and custom software development with over 29 years experience in information technology. The blog approaches a variety of security topics from Artificial Intelligence, Penetration Testing, Internet of Things, and many more.


Since the security and privacy landscape is changing constantly, so must we. That’s why we’re asking you to help us improve this article.

Let us know your thoughts in a comment below.

P.S. You can also follow our blog’s weekly roundup or our social profiles (especially Twitter), where we share the latest cybersecurity news.

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The post Here are The Internet Security Blogs You Should Follow Today [Updated 2019] appeared first on Heimdal Security Blog.

10+ Cyber Security Decisions You (and Me) Will Regret in The Future [Updated]

We may not realize it, but our daily routine habits have long-term effects. Some of them are positives, others could be on a negative note, but there is always at least one lesson to be learned. If you choose to eat healthy regularly, this habit will surely impact your lifestyle for the next years. If you read only a few pages of one book every day, you’ll see the world from different angles, enrich your vocabulary, and better understand people and the world we live in.

This applies to cybersecurity (decisions) as well. And let’s say that”within every decision, comes great responsibility.” Our daily habits we use in the digital landscape can impact greatly our future. If you are like me, you probably want to know that all your valuable digital assets such as photos, work-related documents, and files, apps, emails are in a safe and secure place.

I really hope you don’t have the widely-spread mindset “It can’t happen to me”, and assume you can’t become a victim. Cybercriminals don’t target only large organizations or institutions, everyone is exposed and can be vulnerable to all kind of cyber attacks. Is wrong to think that. We should take precautions to better secure our online identity.

With wise security choices come no regrets.

Did you know a recent report found that cyber attacks are in the top three risks for the society, along with natural disaster and extreme weather? 


You shouldn’t be surprised! The digital landscape doesn’t provide safety as we’d want it, or as we think it should (the “security by default” mentality). There are online threats with every click we take and we need to think about our online behavior seriously. It is essential to adjust our habits so that we can become our own layer of protection.

Don’t expose yourself and your valuable data out there and take security choices you’ll regret in the upcoming years.  Learn how to be resilient and easily detect online threats.

Apply these actionable security tips to enjoy safer digital experiences

  1. Do not share too much personal information on the Internet, because you can expose yourself to identity theft and imposter scams. For security reasons, it is better not to give full information such as birth date, address, the city of birth, phone number, share location when you are on vacation, or other sensitive and personal details that could expose your data.
  2. You may not realize it, but each time you check-in at home, at the airport, restaurant or any other public place, you become an easy target for malicious hackers. Who knows when you might get a visit from potential thieves? Once you expose your current location, attackers will know you’re on vacation and (most likely) rob you. For security and privacy matters, do not share your current location and provide as little information as possible about it while on the go.
  3. Also, don’t share photos of your credit card details on social channels, because hackers can find different ways to get access to your financial accounts. Food for thought: read these stories of people who share images of their credit cards on Twitter or Instagram.  You can easily get ripped off. “Sharing a picture online of your credit/debit card is a surefire way to have your details hacked.”
  4. Make sure that you don’t reveal your passwords to other people. Not even with your best friend or family members! The password is the key to access all your sensitive data stored on the email or other online accounts. Same applies to the working environment. You never know, but an insider threat could be next to you and can easily access sensitive data of your company. Make sure you block your computer each time you leave the office desk.
  5. We highly recommend changing your passwords regularly and set strong and unique passwords for your online accounts. Use this password guide to manage your passwords like an expert.
  6. Be careful when accepting random friends requests on FB from people you don’t know. You may be targeted by online scammers who want to collect data about users by creating fake Facebook profiles. If one of your friends send you a suspicious link, don’t click it, because it may redirect you to a malicious site and infect the PC with malware.
  7. Most of the spam campaigns usually take place via email, so we strongly advise you not to click or download any file or document attached that looks suspicious to you. Online criminals will always find innovative methods (like spoofing) to steal users’ sensitive data. Here’s how online scams work and how you can easily detect them.
  8. Don’t post private conversations without asking for permission in advance. Social media is a great place to interact and work with others, but many of us still have problems understanding how to use these platforms properly. Follow and use these specific netiquette rules. Remember that all messages you post on FB or other social media channels will remain there forever, because they store and collect data, and might affect you at some point. Always check your privacy and security settings for every social media platform you use and think twice before choosing how much data you want to make publicly accessible or keep it private.
  9. When you browse the Internet and search for something specific, you are not completely safe and you can infect your PC with malware or other online threats. Every browser has vulnerabilities that need to be fixed, so it is important to keep your browser up to date all the time and apply all patches available. This applies to all your plugins, add-ons or operating system. This step-by-step guide will show you how to get solid browser security.
  10. Education is always the key to stay safe online and be protected, and we strongly remind you to stay informed and learn from free educational resources.

We thought it might be useful to compile a list of 10 security decisions that can have an impact in the future. It can harm us more than we realize, so read them carefully. 🙂

Later edit: The list isn’t complete and we’ll keep updating it with more useful recommendations about security decisions that impact our lives.

Decision 1: Allowing someone else to dictate your security priorities

Here’s a piece of friendly advice: Don’t let someone else tell you how to prioritize your security problems! Make sure you understand your own needs and decide what security measures you should follow, in order to enhance online protection.

When it comes to cybersecurity priorities, it’s better (and wiser) not to rely on everyone who shares their views and opinions on digital safety. Do not be influenced by someone who tells you how to approach security matters. Instead, think of your own security challenges and prioritize them to better protect your valuable online assets.

Decision 2: Not focusing on educating yourself about cybersecurity

Probably one of the best investments for each of us is education. I sincerely believe that cybersecurity education is our best weapon to fight against today’s wave of cyber attacks. Education should be our core belief and main concern in keeping our valuable assets secure.

Cybersecurity education is the key to unlock a safer future and minimize the impact of cyber security incidents. Make sure you focus on spending more time and effort to learn as much as possible about the cybersecurity environment.

Why? Because the most successful cyber attacks aren’t just about technology but tied to the human error.

If you don’t know where to begin your learning path, have a look at these free educational resources that apply to anyone, no matter the background or skills level.

Decision 3: Reading cybersecurity resources with no actionable insights for you (and myself included)

What’s the point of reading cyber security online resources if you don’t apply the information found there? I know that a quick search on Google can generate lots of blogs and websites in this field. The big challenge comes when you need to filter and choose those valuable resources that can teach us actionable stuff.

I think we should start with a simple idea: your reading should be useful and actionable all the way through the journey in cybersecurity. You need it. We all need it. More than that, it’s essential to be ready for the future.

“Practical application of what you read reinforces what you’ve learned because you’re forced to integrate it into your life. If all you do is consume, you’re much more likely to forget what you read” said Srinivas Rao on Medium

As the author says, reading things we don’t actually apply to lead us to a “vicious cycle of excessive consumption which limits the creativity and prevents you from consuming less and creating more”.

If you want to read actionable cybersecurity resources, we’ve curated a list of Internet blogs and websites that could help you become savvier in info security.

Also, we asked security experts about books, and they’ve recommended some of the best educational cybersecurity books out there to read.

Decision 4: We don’t think of the security implications beyond our devices

After purchasing a device, – whether it is a desktop or mobile-, we don’t think of all the security implications too much. We are probably too excited about the cool features (and apps) included, and we miss this part.

We expose ourselves and our data by becoming more vulnerable to cyber attacks and easily prone to malware infection.

Everyone (myself included) believe that security is by default, and we don’t take the time to check all the existing settings.

I learned how my security decisions have a great impact on my future.
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Here are some hands-on and actionable guides you may want to read for keeping your devices safe:

Smartphone security guide

Windows 10 Security Guide

How to Protect your PC with Multiple Layers of Protection

Decision 5: Not paying enough attention to the security software you install

When you look for a security software program, you’ll probably choose based on a recommendation from friends and family. This is a wise decision showing you care about your data. It is essential to add an extra layer of security to lower the risks of seeing your files and documents being stolen by hackers.

Depending on your budget, you could choose a free or paid security software to protect your digital assets. Also, make sure you pay enough attention to the product you’ll install, so you don’t have regrets afterward.

Why? Because in general we install software products on our devices with a few clicks and this is it. We forget about them. What we don’t do is:

  • Check for all the necessary system requirements;
  • Change default passwords;
  • Choose carefully and not investing in quality and legitimate products;
  • Check for built-in apps and all the software package included.

Independent software programs usually are packed with modules that constantly check for updates. Some have the auto-update feature built-in, while other program lets you do it manually. I recommend performing these updates that deliver revisions to your device (fixing major security vulnerabilities, removing and including new features).

Here’s what security experts say about the importance of software patching and why it’s an essential key factor for your online safety. Cultivate this healthy habit of checking and installing for updates as a part of your daily digital routine.

Also, remember that the longer your devices run without updates, the more exposed you are to data leakage and other cybersecurity threats.

Decision 6: Postponing data backups

I am sure you’re concern about your data like me, but postponing to backup of all your critical data is a choice we might regret in the future.

The longer we postpone this action, the more our data is vulnerable to attacks and prone to be lost unexpectedly. That’s why it is essential to have a copy of all your valuable data on external sources like a hard drive or in the cloud (Google Drive or Dropbox).

Here are the golden rules of data backup you should follow right now:

1. Keep at least 2 copies of your data.

2. Have backups on different external devices.

3. Maintain a constant, automated backup schedule of your files and documents.

4. Secure your backups with strong passwords and keep those passwords safe.

Therefore, for people like you and I, who can’t really spare that much time when it comes to backing up data, here’s a simple and actionable guide to follow.

Several security solutions offer backups for your computer data, and many of them will do this automatically and periodically. You can also create your own backups (and it won’t hurt to have multiple backups anyway). Just be disciplined in making sure you regularly do the backups so that if something should happen, the minimum amount of data is lost.

Decision 7: Not using two-factor authentication

A Google software engineer said during a security conference that less than 10 percent of active Google accounts use two-step authentication to enhance protection for their devices.

You may not give it too much importance now, but its main purpose is to make malicious actors’ life harder and reduce potential fraud risks. It will make it more difficult for cybercriminals to breach your account.

It’s nothing wrong with facing difficulties to understand new technologies. It’s wrong trying to ignore or postpone them because it will affect your online safety in the long run.

3 main reasons why should you use/activate two-factor authentication (2FA):

  • Passwords on their own aren’t as powerful as we believe they are, and can’t fully protect us. Cyber attackers have the power to try billions of passwords combinations and crack them instantly.
  • People tend to use the same password on different accounts and when online criminals succeed to crack it (via brute force attack), all your data will be exposed. Don’t do it! Set unique and strong passwords and consider using a password manager tool.
  • 2FA offers an extra layer of security and reduces cybercriminals’ chances to launch an attack. It’s hard for them to get through the second authentication factor.

Enabling two-factor authentication method is a must-have for all our email accounts, social media accounts, apps or online banking accounts. You can use this step-by-step guide to help you activate it for various online accounts. As for the passwords, do not reuse them for different online accounts.

Decision 8: Sharing too much personal information on social media

This is one of those security decisions you will definitely regret in the future. For privacy matters, do not to share your full personal data (birth date, address, the city of birth, phone number, or any other details on social accounts).

This way, you expose yourself to identify threats and most likely become more vulnerable to all types of online scams. Cybercriminals use social engineering techniques to exploit your data and get quick access to them.

Nothing beats learning from personal experience, but sometimes it’s better to learn from others’ experience rather than having a negative one. These true Internet stories could be an inspiration for you to take cyber security very seriously. Also, it doesn’t harm to be a little bit paranoid and protect your digital assets as everyone wants them.

Decision 9: Connecting to unprotected Wi-Fi networks

There is no news that Wi-fi networks come with a set of security issues. This allows malicious hackers to use Wifi sniffers and other methods to intercept almost all the data (such as emails, passwords, addresses, browsing history and even credit card data).

Before I started working in cybersecurity, I used to connect to every public and free Wi-fi network when visiting a coffee shop or restaurant. I learned not to do this anymore.

I realized (and understood) the security risks I was exposing myself and all my data by relying on Wi-fi networks. Now I turn it off :-).

This is one of those security decisions you’ll regret one day, so do your best and avoid Wi-fi connections that don’t provide password encryption when you’re enabling it. Cybercriminals can hack into a public Wi-Fi, just like this 7-year-old kid did.

To be extra safe on public Wi-fi, make sure you:

  • Visit and use only secure websites with the HTTPS protocol while browsing the Internet and, mostly, while doing various banking operations.
  • Consider using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) and block malicious actors’ attempt to access sensitive data sent over the unsecured Wi-Fi network.
  • Keep your operating system up to date and patch everything
  • Do not connect to a public Wifi without having antivirus software installed on your device.

Decision 10: Giving up on cybersecurity because it seems too complicated

For many of us, cybersecurity seems to be way too technical and difficult to approach, and for this reason, most users give up on understanding the basics of cybersecurity.

It gets confusing for regular users, but also for business owners, journalists, or people working or involved in cybersecurity. At some point, all parties involved think “why can’t security be simpler?”

Cybersecurity is complicated because life is complicated and there is no perfection. We can’t be a hundred percent secure – so the rhetoric and fear monger of vendors and security professionals has given in to a feeling of helplessness and disparity among the 80%. said Ian-Thornton-Trump on an expert roundup.

Decision 11: You do not check for reliable and trustworthy (re)sources 

We live in a world where we are overwhelmed with lots of information from every social network. We consume and have access to so much free content that it gets difficult (and challenging) to distinguish between fake and real news.  

While fake news is nothing new, disinformation can play a significant role in spreading and creating a fake reality that people (will) believe in. 

Every time we look for something and doing research on a specific topic, the information is right there, at one click distance. But how many of us are willing to go over the process of filtering and checking data? How do you know if it comes from trusted, high-quality sources? 

PRO TIP:  We strongly recommend to always fact-check other resources, and not rely solely on the first (re)source you find. Here are some useful tips that can provide actionable information on how you can better spot fake news. Also, it is important to combat them through user education, high-quality journalism, and always double-checking other resources. 

Each of us should be more aware of the long-term consequences of fake news, combat them, and invest in education to know how to better detect disinformation.

You can easily tackle it by attending a (free) cybersecurity course for beginners that will teach you how to improve your online safety. Once again, I emphasize the importance of education that can open and save digital lives.

The more we have a proactive cybersecurity defense, the safer we’ll be on the Internet where we can better combat the alarming wave of online threats. Cybercriminals don’t cease to surprise us with the various methods used during their cyber attacks.

Is any of these security decisions on your list to follow? What key factors influence your security decisions making? We are curious to know what you think of it, so feel free to share your thoughts.

The post 10+ Cyber Security Decisions You (and Me) Will Regret in The Future [Updated] appeared first on Heimdal Security Blog.

13+ Warning Signs that Your Computer is Malware-Infected [Updated 2019]

Here’s one of the scenarios you may not like, but it could happen every day because it’s always viruses season for computers. You’re working on an important project and suddenly you start seeing annoying pop-ups displayed on your computer. Also, it takes too long for your files or computer apps to load. You wait and wait until you start asking yourself:

 “Does my computer have a virus?”

Unfortunately, the answer might be “yes” and your PC could be already compromised with viruses or next-gen malware that are slowing down its activity and performance.

This is one of the many warning signs that show your PC might suffer from a malware infection. There are more of them you need to be aware of and understand, so you can quickly take action.

In this article, we’ll show you the most frequent warning signs of malware infection and what can you do about it.

Use these quick links to easily navigate and see some of the most common warning signs displayed on a computer:

1. Your computer is slowing down
2. Annoying adds are displayed
3. Crashes
4. Pop-up messages
5. Internet traffic suspiciously increases
6. Your browser homepage changed without your input
7. Unusual messages show unexpectedly.
8. Your security solution is disabled
9. Your friends say they receive strange messages from you
10. Unfamiliar icons are displayed on your desktop
11. Unusual error messages
12. You can’t access the Control Panel
13. Everything seems to work perfectly on your PC
14. You get the error on the browser
15. You get suspicious shortcut files

Scenario 1: “My computer applications run slow lately and it takes longer than usual to start”

If you’re dealing with this scenario, it could mean you have viruses on your computer. We know, it’s so frustrating to see it loading slowly. It is a known fact that one of the malware’s main activity is to slow down your operating system, whenever you’re navigating on the Internet or simply accessing your local applications.

What can you do?

First off, you need to check out for causes and issues and try to understand what is going on.

Here are some of the most common causes that slow down your PC:

  • Your system’s RAM memory is low and might be caused by the number of high apps you’re currently using. Windows Task Manager is a great tool to look for programs which use the most of your RAM memory. Press CTRL+ALT+DELETE simultaneously on your PC, choose Task Manager and will open a list of your current apps you have open;
  • There is no storage space on your hard disk, so you need to check out all your files and documents stored there and do a cleaning;
  • This behavior is particularly happening when you’re browsing the Internet, so you need to check out your browser’s Settings, then clear your browsing data;
  • A fragmented system which means that the storage space is used inefficiently and reduces your PC’s performance;
  • Your Windows OS hasn’t been updated or you’re using outdated drivers.

If you have already thoroughly verified these possible causes and all seems to work just fine, you can start considering a potential malware infection. Use these tips to help you optimize and speed up your Windows operating system.  This article shows 5 ways to keep an eye on those programs accessing your drives.

Scenario 2: “I keep getting annoying ads that are opening randomly or strange messages on my computer’s screen”

Unexpected pop-ups which appear on your screen are a typical sign of a malware infection that wreak havoc on your computer. This form of malware is known as spyware and is designed to collect and steal users’ sensitive data without their knowledge.

In this particular case, the main issue is created not only by the numerous pop-up windows that affect your Internet browsing but also because it is quite difficult to remove them from the system.

These pop-ups are not only frustrating, but they usually come bundled with other concealed malware threats and could be far more destructive for our systems. They could be disguised as legitimate programs and actually track your web browsing data or monitor your online activity to collect passwords and other personal information.

We strongly recommend to NEVER CLICK on a suspicious pop-up!


A good idea would be to try one of these free spyware removal tools to get rid of those annoying pop-ups or strange messages.

Also, to better keep your computer away from malicious threats, make sure you apply these security measures:

  1. Do not click on pop-up windows
  2. Don’t answer unsolicited emails or messages
  3. Be very careful when you are trying to download free applications from various websites

Use this guide that includes useful steps that will make the removal process easier and more effective, as well as your Internet navigation hassle-free.

Scenario 3: “My laptop keeps crashing when I watch Youtube videos or play games. It simply freezes, then a blue screen shows up”

Oh, I know this one. It happened to me with my previous laptop so many times and was quite frustrating. It crashed so many times and got that popular BSOD (Blue Screen of Death). Then it started and “told” me Windows was recovering from an unexpected shutdown.

You are probably familiar with this error too, right?

There might be two things causing this type of issue:

  1. You could be dealing with a technical issue caused by a potential incompatibility between your software and/or hardware
  2. Or it may be a malware issue.

If you suspect any technical problem, it may lead to this:

Are different programs running on your PC that are in conflict? Are there any orphaned registry keys which have not been removed that could eventually crash your system?

Orphaned registry keys are pieces of data information that have been left behind during the process of uninstalling several programs from your computer. They don’t only take up unnecessary space on the PC but can cause a serious issue for its proper functionality.

How to fix this:

Use the Registry Editor (Regedit.exe) that can be opened in the search bar of Windows. From there, you select the run command, but it could be a daunting part of this process because you have to manually remove orphaned keys.

Our recommendation is to run an automated cleaning session using a specialized program like CC Cleaner which is free (Two versions of this tool have been compromised by malicious actors who spread malware inside it, but CCleaner is safe now) and will  automatically scan missed and unused keys while doing a backup of your data before the actual cleaning.

First of all, install the CCleaner program, click the Registry icon (as displayed in the image below), select the items you want to delete, then Scan for issues and a list of potential issues will be generated. After the scanning is done, you can review this list and click on Fix selected issues to solve the outstanding Registry issues. You will be asked to backup changes.

CC Cleaner Program 1024x423 1

  • For malware infection: run a complete scan on the system with a good antivirus product. If you have a dilemma about which antivirus is the best one, we wrote this useful guide on how you can find the right one for your needs. It is also important to rely on another layer of security on top of your antivirus solution to better fight against online threats and proactively block them.

If your programs or system crash constantly or the infamous BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) appears often, it’s a clear warning that your system is not working properly and you should look into it.

There are two things that can cause this issue:

  1. You could be dealing with a technical issue caused by a potential incompatibility between your software and/or hardware
  2. Or it may be a malware issue.

If you suspect a technical issue, multiple software problems may lead to this.

Scenario 4: “ I started getting this popup message <you’re running out of disk space on Windows (C:)”

If you are receiving this warning message, it means that there’s no free space left on a particular partition (in this case, C) on the main hard drive in your computer. More and more users are reporting this issue.

The cause? Here’s what Microsoft has to say about this:

This behavior can occur if the free disk space on your computer has dropped below the low disk space notification threshold associated with the Disk Cleanup utility.

low disk space 1

How do I fix this?

First of all, you need to check if your physical storage space has been increasing lately or if some of your files disappeared or changed their names. Also, make sure, you delete all those old or unnecessary files that can lower your PC’s performance.

This could be another sign of malware infection since there are so many types of malicious programs which use different methods to fill up all the available space in the hard drive and cause it to crash.

Scenario 5: “For quite some time, every time I start my PC, I notice that the Internet traffic suspiciously increases”

If this message was displayed on your computer, chances are there is an unusually high network activity happening on your PC that could lead to a malware infection.

There are cases when the user is not connected to the Internet through his browser, and there is no program that may connect to online servers to download or upload any data, but high network activity can still be observed.

What can I do?

Have you checked for one of the followings:

  • the last Windows update for your computer?
  • is there any program or application that’s downloading any data?
  • is there any update for a certain app running at this moment?
  • is there a large download that you started and forgot about, which may still be running in the background?

If the answer to all these questions is NO, then you should check out where all that traffic is going. Here’s how to do this:

  • Monitor your network and detect hidden threats by using one of these programs: GlassWire, Little Snitch or Wireshark.
  • Check for a malware infection, by using a good antivirus product to fully scan your system.
  • If you suspect your computer has been infected by a dangerous financial malware, we recommend using a specialized security suite designed to address advanced and new online threats.

Scenario 6: “My homepage has changed and I don’t remember doing it myself”

If you spotted this unusual behavior or a new toolbar showing out of nowhere, or you’ve been redirected to a different web address than the one you’ve initially accessed, they could be signs of malware infection.

It usually happens when you visit a website and you accidentally click on a link or a pop-up window. This triggers the unwanted software to download and install on your device. The effects are not only annoying but also malicious, and can compromise your data.

What to do?

Run a complete scan with your security solution (an antivirus or proactive security solution) as soon as possible. Why? Because these type of threats don’t go away easily.

I just learned to easily detect malware infection on my PC.
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Scenario 7: “My PC is acting weird because I get unusual messages that appear unexpectedly.”

I get this! That’s usually the type of warning message that makes you wonder “What’s going on with my computer?”

Here are some frequent warning signs to watch out!

  • Suddenly you see programs opening and closing automatically
  • your Windows OS is shutting down unexpectedly, without any reason
  • you’ve noticed strange windows when your PC tries to boot
  • Windows tells you that you’ve lost access to some of your drives.

Although the root cause may be a technical issue, it could also be a warning sign that malware has taken over your computer and is slowing down its activity.

Has your computer suffered a malware infection lately?

How to mitigate the impact of a malware infection?

Follow these steps:

1. Keep your Windows system up to date

2. Scan your computer with an antivirus solution

3. Install a proactive security program to enhance your computer’s protection

4. Consider reinstalling your operating system. This 13-step guide will show you how to secure your PC after a fresh (re)installation.

Scenario 8: “I use an antivirus product and keep getting the message that <Protection is disabled>”

If you noticed your antivirus solution doesn’t seem to work anymore or the Update module is disabled, then you should check out immediately for ways to fix this.

Did you know that some types of malware are sneaky and can disable your security solution?

 Well, yes, they are designed to leave users without any defense and making difficult to detect them. If you already tried to reboot your computer, closed and opened the security solution and all your troubleshooting efforts seemed useless, you could take into consideration the malware infection scenario.


This is especially the case, because it’s a known fact that traditional antivirus solutions can’t easily detect, block or remove next-gen and advanced malware (such as ransomware, adware or financial malware). Thus, you can get exposed to all kind of attacks, and we strongly recommend enhancing your protection by adding multiple layers of protection.

Read these 10 reasons why second-generation  malware evades antivirus detection.

Scenario 9: “My friends tell me they’re getting strange random messages from me on Facebook, which I didn’t send”

If your friends recently got several strange messages/emails or suspicious links from you, and you didn’t send them, it’s likely that you’ve been infected with malware. Here’s a good example of malware spreading via Facebook Messenger and tricking users into clicking on links they’ve received from one of their friends.

But first, check out your online accounts and see if those random messages were actually sent from one of your accounts. If something like this happened, take immediate action by following these security measures:

  • Log out from all your accounts. For most of our online accounts, we log into multiple devices and we often forget to log out. So make sure to log out from your online accounts on all connected devices.
  • Use unique and strong passwords for all your online accounts. Always remember to change passwords for your online accounts! NEVER use the same password(s) for multiple accounts, because if you are hacked, all your accounts will be exposed and lose valuable data stolen. This password security guide will help you master passwords like an expert.
  • Start using two-factor authentication RIGHT NOW. Do you want to increase your control over your accounts’ security? Then add this second security layer that will ask for an extra authentication step in the login process, along with your credentials.

Scenario 10: “There are these new, yet unfamiliar icons on my desktop that I don’t recognize”

If you’ve been noticing unknown and new icons on your PC, you most likely downloaded by accident these sneaky programs called PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs). They are malicious programs that can do a lot of damage and expose you to data leakage, displaying annoying ads or pop-ups on the screen, or adding toolbars on your browser.

If you’re infected with PUPs, have a look at this guide showing how to avoid these unwanted programs and remove them from your computer.

Scenario 11: “Sometimes I see unusual error messages displayed on my computer”

An error message like this one could indicate that there’s a bug in your system that needs to be fixed, or it could be a warning sign of malware infection. These types of error messages showing missing or corrupt files folders suggest that your PC has been compromised and its performance is affected, which makes it run slowly.

How to fix this:

Do a full scan of your PC and see if any viruses are detected. Also, make sure you have the latest updates installed on your operating system and regularly check for security patches, applications patches, and drivers.

error messageSource: Microsoft Windows Dev Center

Scenario 12: “It seems that I can’t access my Control Panel by clicking on the button”

If you are facing this issue and your Control Panel does not open, it means that your computer is having a technical problem and is not functioning correctly.

How to fix this?

The first thing to do is run a full scan with your antivirus software. Then, see if you can open Control Panel in Safe Mode and follow these steps described here. It could also be another sign that your computer is vulnerable and exposed to potential cyber attacks. After running a full scan with your antivirus product, use also a proactive security solution to keep your confidential information properly safe.

Source: GeForceForums

Scenario 13: “Everything seems to work perfectly on my PC. Are any chances to be paranoid and still check out for malware?”

When it comes to data protection, it is essential to be a little bit paranoid and very careful, even if everything seems to look normal. Why? Because cybercriminals are creative and they can hide malware in the most unexpected places, leaving no visible marks and still infecting your computer.

Everything may seem to work perfectly normal on your PC until a boot on your system could silently wait for instructions to access and collect your most valuable data.

Scenario 14: “My laptop working very slow and sometimes it gives the <Flash not working> error on the browser”

We received the above message from one of our readers. 

If you get this message too on your laptop or PC, it might be a good idea to disable Flash and try another alternative. Flash has lots of vulnerabilities that we talked about in this article, showing all the security risks users are exposed to. 

Regardless of your browser used, (Firefox, Opera, Chrome) this could be a warning sign that your computer is malware-infected.   

Here are a few useful tips that could come in handy: 

  • Keep your Windows system up to date, and consider reinstall your OS, if this issue persists.  
  • Have a full scan of all your files and apps installed on your PC using an AV solution, to see if it detects any malware 
  • Consider installing a proactive security solution to enhance protection for your computer and keep malware and other online threats at bay.  
  • Also, make sure you reboot your PC if you haven’t performed this task in a while.  
  • Have a look at the Task Manager function and see what programs run in the background that could slow down your PC performance. It helps you get an overview of what apps and program take space and how much.  
  • Make sure you have the latest version of Adobe Flash installed, but if you don’t have it, download it from here and follow the instructions. Remember to restart the computer after this procedure. 
  • If you no longer want to have the Flash Player app on your computer, you can follow these easy steps and uninstall it. 

Scenario 15: “I used an external USB drive and when I connected it to my computer, it was infected by a virus and suddenly all the files turned into shortcuts.”  

Here’s another warning sign showing your computer could be infected with malware. If you used an external USB drive or another external flash drive to copy information without scanning it before, this could explain the appearance of those shortcut files.  

If all your images, files, and other documents show up as shortcut files and are not accessible, they could be infected with malware. These malicious files can compromise all your data from the computer, rename your files and create a lot of chaos and hassle.  

How to fix this? 

If your files have been compromised, here are some useful tips and security measures to take: 

  • Have a full scan of your USB drive and check out for possible viruses and malware. If the antivirus solution doesn’t detect them on your external drive, maybe you should try to format it and clean the space. 
  • Use the Command Prompt (cmd) on a Windows machine, while the USB drive is plug into your device. To access it, go to the Start menu, type in “Cmd”, press “enter”, and you’ll see the “cmd.exe” under a list of programs. Click on it and you will be directed to the Windows command line from where you can recover the virus-infected files and get repair. The process may take a while, but it will clean up your More details can be found here 
  • Make sure you add multiple layers of security and consider using a proactive security solution to strengthen your protection. 

Can you avoid malware infections?

Yes, you definitely can, if you’re paying close attention to these early malware infection signs and prevent them from happening. Make sure your operating system, browsers, and plugins are always up to date, because keeping your software patched can keep online criminals at bay.

Also, here’s a list of recommended articles: to help you better survive a malware infection:

How to Easily Remove Malware from Your PC [Updated]

How to Protect Your PC with Multiple Layers of Security

32 Go-To Security Forums for Free Malware Removal Help

Make sure your network is safe and secure, and always think before you click on something. Also, remember to practice safe browsing and always access trusted online sources to easier prevent potential online threats.

Reminder: Knowledge and long-lasting education are our best weapons to fight against online threats, so it’s vital to learn and educate yourself and others to better understand how malware works on our system, and how we can mitigate its impact.

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