If you were lucky enough to have a visit from the grandchildren lately, you may notice that your computer is slower and funny things keep happening. You could have picked up a piece (or many pieces) of malicious software.
Malware or Malicious software ranges from viruses, which are destructive, to adware that watches your habits on the web or steal your private information. There is a constant battle going on between the exploiters and the good guys who try to keep you safe. You also have to help by keeping your software up to date. That means always doing those Microsoft Updates, the Adobe and Java updates as well. Any software that you have on your computer should be checked to be sure that it is updated. A good way to check your software is to use:
You should also know what software you have installed on your computer. If suddenly you have some piece of software that claims to be fixing problems with your machine or providing a “Free Backup” and you have not installed that software, be suspicious. Google it. You can find out if it is harmful or benign by reading some of the articles. Malware writers are tricky too. They know how to move their articles to the top of the Google pages. Don’t believe the first thing you read. Be sure to read a couple of the articles and search through them for differing viewpoints.