These are stand-alone programs that will protect your computer from viruses, worms and some trojans, and allow you to clean it should you become infected.
• Norton Antivirus (http://www.symantec.com/) Trial / Buy
• Mcafee Virus Scan (http://www.mcafee.com/) Trial / Buy
• PC-Cillin (http://www.trendmicro.com/) Trial / Buy
• Anti-Viral Toolkit Pro (http://www.kaspersky.com/) Trial / Buy
• AVG Anti-Virus (http://www.grisoft.com/) Free / Buy
Note that all of these websites (except grisoft.com) have areas that will conduct free online virus scans on your machine; however, only Trend Micro’s “House Call” page (housecall.trendmicro.com) will actually clean your machine if it finds any. In any case, these online scans are only band-aid solutions for disinfecting your machine after the fact – you should still be purchasing a realtime Anti-Virus software package (such as those listed above) to prevent viruses from getting into your system in the first place.
- Update your virus/trojan definitions on a regular basis. Definition files are the
database that your anti-virus/trojan software draw from to detect, identify and
remove new viruses, worms and trojans. With new ones constantly emerging, new
definition files are constantly being compiled and released by the software
companies to keep up. Make sure you download these definitions regularly
(weekly) from your company’s website to keep your software up-to-date for your
own protection (ie, for Norton Anti-Virus you can use their “live update” feature).
- Scan all downloaded files/attachments with Anti-Virus/Anti-Trojan software,
before you open them.
- Backup your data. No matter how safe you think you are, unless you back up
your data prior to being infected, you may lose it during the infection/payload
process (viruses/worms/trojans may delete or scramble files) or anti-virus/trojan
cleaning process (files may need to be deleted to clean the machine). If there is
important data that you need, make sure you back it up on a regular basis (either
on diskette, CD-ROM or uploaded to a website).