3 Jul

5 ways to test your computer's security

Given the recent spate of cybercrime activities, isn’t it better to err on the side of caution and make sure that your computer is always safe and secure?

Hackers use many various ways to attack your computer, so you need to approach the problem from various angles. While we can’t always predict when or how these attacks will happen, it’s always better to know what you might be dealing with some time in the future so you can respond and act accordingly. Here are five ways to test your computer’s security.

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5 ways to test your computer’s security

In today's world, you can never be too safe. That's why it's important to keep yourself up to date not only with the latest technology but the many methods by which you could be vulnerable to cyber attacks. Cyber crime is becoming more and more prevalent and sophisticated, which is why you must always be one step ahead. 

  1. Check your settings

The first tool in your arsenal is the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer. This free tool checks your Windows and Office settings for any possible problems, especially dirt. MBSA will check your user account passwords and tell you if any account has a weak or disabled password, which is an easy prey for hackers. It also checks most of your account settings. Is your computer installed for automatic updates? Do you have multiple administrator accounts on the computer? This software will check all this information for you.

Also look at the shared folders. MBSA will show you the folders created for sharing. Perhaps in the past, you have opened some personal folders, so any user on your network can access the files in these folders. Make sure that you share only what you wanted to share, and with whom.

  1. Update your browser plug-ins

I've already talked about this before, and I'll repeat it: update your browser. Only the latest, most secure version will help protect you from infections and attacks. Of course, a modern browser is just the beginning. You need to make sure that your browser plug-ins are also relevant. Like an old browser, an old plugin leaves your browser and your computer vulnerable.

Here's a good video that explains how you can update your browser on your computer.

Open browsers on your computer, even those that you do not use, and go to Mozilla's Plugin checker. It will show you every plug-in installed in the browser, and whether it will be up-to-date. Despite the fact that this is the same company that makes Firefox, the plugin validation program works in Internet Explorer, Chrome and other browsers.

  1. Test your firewall

One of the most basic security settings is the firewall. Windows and Mac have built-in firewalls, and they include many third-party security programs. The firewall does not allow hackers to see your computer on the network when they are searching for victims. Even if they know where your computer is located, the firewall saves them.

But they are not perfect. Improper setup of the port can send a torch, reveal your computer or give hackers the opportunity to slip by. If you have a virus, you may have changed the settings without even knowing it. A port testing service, such as PortTest, scans your firewall to make sure that your computer is invisible. If he sees you, so can hackers.

  1. Permanently delete files

Newsflash: Deleting files does not delete them. They can always hold onto the hard drive for a few days or weeks. Anyone who knows what they are doing can restore them. That's why it's a good idea to delete any important files that you no longer need permanently.

But even then you do not want just to vacuum your hands and assume that the files have disappeared. To confirm that they have been deleted, run the file recovery program, such as Recuva, and see what it can even find on your system. If it does not find the files that you have permanently deleted, you are in good shape.

  1. Check your Facebook settings

Your computer is not the only place where you store information. Facebook is equipped with personal data that the swindler would like to play. That's why they invented the "View As" tool. It shows you what your profile looks like to the public or specific people.

Did you know that in 2011, Facebook accounts were hacked 600,000 times daily during users' log-in? That's why it's all the more important to be vigilant. The first step to doing this, of course, is to manage your passwords and ensure that you have an uncrackable login combination to prevent being hacked.

If any of your data has incorrect settings, you can immediately detect it. Consider this "au naturel" Facebook settings. You will see exactly what your profile looks like to outsiders. Go to the "Timing," "About the Program," "Photos," "Friends" and other sections and see if the vulnerable tidbits slipped. Remember that you can edit everything in your profile. To the right of each item, you will find an icon with an inverted triangle.

Having one or two of these can still make a big difference with your computer. It can be scary with so much Spyware and Viruses on the internet. But now, you have the information you need to stay protected.

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Marco Hathway

Marco is a businessman for 20 years and a father of 4 boys. He has 2 grandchildren and loves to play golf.
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