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Practicing Safe Email: The Basics Revisited
To many computer users, these security measures may seem
self-evident. However, the widespread distribution and damage
caused by some viruses show that a great number of end users
are not practicing even these basic virus protection techniques.
Perhaps those more experienced with computers have a certain
responsibility to try to educate "newbie" colleagues and friends
about basic email security issues such as those listed below.
Install and use anti-virus software. Modern anti-virus software
is easy to configure and use even for those new to computing. If
buying AV software is a problem there are quite adequate free
scanners available. One such free product is AVG
2. Regularly update your virus scanner.
People often get infected with a virus simply because they haven't
downloaded the latest definitions. It's not uncommon for the
major anti-virus companies to release several updates within
a week, so it pays to continually check for updates. If possible, configure your anti-virus software to download updates automatically as well as check manually from time to time.
Even the most reliable and sophisticated anti-virus
software is virtually useless against new viruses if it doesn't
have the most current definitions available.
3. Be very wary of email attachments even if they are from
people you know and trust. Some viruses can attach and send
themselves to your email address in such a way that you may
believe you are receiving an email from a friend or
colleague. This is know as spoofing