Security Tips & Talk
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Security improvements in Windows 8
Support ended for Windows XP last week. That means technical assistance for Windows XP is no longer available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC. To stay protected, you can upgrade your current computer or buy a new one. Windows 8.1 Update runs on a wider variety of devices, so...
15 Apr 2014
Get the latest security updates and find out what to do if your computer is running Windows XP
Microsoft releases security updates on the second Tuesday of every month. Learn how to get security updates automatically For IT Pros: Microsoft Security Bulletin Summary for April 2014 Support for Windows XP has ended Microsoft has provided support for Windows XP for the past 12 years...
8 Apr 2014
Get security updates for March 2014
Microsoft releases security updates on the second Tuesday of every month. Skip the details and check for the latest updates. This bulletin announces the release of security updates for Windows, Microsoft Word, and other programs. Learn how to get security updates automatically For IT Pros...
11 Mar 2014
Best ways to battle botnets
What is a botnet? Botnets are networks of compromised computers that criminals use to commit fraud, such as: Secretly spreading malware Stealing personal information Hijacking Internet search results to take you to websites that are potentially dangerous How do I know if my computer...
25 Feb 2014
How do I know if I already have antivirus software?
If your computer is running Windows 8 If your computer is running Windows 8, you already have antivirus software. Windows 8 includes Windows Defender , which helps protect you from viruses, spyware, and other malicious software . If Windows Defender is turned off and you don’t have another...
21 Feb 2014
Do I need anything besides Windows Defender?
A reader asks: If I have Windows Defender, do I need to buy anything else to protect my computer? If your computer is running the Windows 8 operating system, Windows Defender will help protect you from viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. You don’t need to buy anything else. ...
16 Jan 2014
10 New Year’s resolutions for your digital devices and your online life
It’s a new year, which means it’s time to resolve to create healthier habits in our daily lives. But we don’t have to stop at just improving our body, mind, and spirit. It’s also a good idea to resolve to keep our PCs, laptops, smartphones, and social networking sites healthy...
31 Dec 2013
Online safety tips for travelers
If you’re travelling this holiday season and you plan to be online, here are a few ways to protect yourself and your family: Before you go, make sure all your software (and especially your antivirus software) is up to date. Learn how to get security updates automatically . Be careful with...
19 Dec 2013
Safer is sweeter
Kim Sanchez, Director of Trustworthy Computing
Each fall when kids go “back to school,” parents and caregivers prepare their kids for homework, school programs, sports, even “trick-or-treating.” It’s also important that families have the same preparedness when using technology. We should encourage all children to enjoy...
25 Oct 2013
EMET: A valuable tool for PC protection
If you’re a regular reader of this blog, then you’ve probably already taken steps to help protect your PC. You have antivirus software that you trust and you keep it updated automatically. You’ve activated your firewall. You regularly install security updates. You know not to respond...
18 Oct 2013
My antivirus software won’t remove malware
Windows Defender and Microsoft Security Essentials (antivirus software from Microsoft) can detect and remove most malware. If you’re running antivirus software and you’re still having trouble removing malware, follow these steps: Make sure you have automatic updating turned on . This...
17 Oct 2013
3 ways to speed up your PC
Here are three ways to speed up a sluggish computer. 1. Scan your computer for viruses If your computer is slow or restarts often, it could be infected with a virus or other malicious software . If you have Windows 8, you can use the built-in Windows Defender to help you get rid of a virus or...
15 Oct 2013
Get free or paid support for your malware problem
Is your computer running slowly? Are programs starting unexpectedly? Is the activity light on your broadband or external modem constantly lit? Does it sound like your computer's hard disk is continually working? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, your computer might be infected...
24 Sep 2013
Safety is an active verb
Kim Sanchez, Director of Trustworthy Computing
When we are young, we are taught to brush our teeth in order to develop healthy and preventative habits. Hopefully by the time we reach adulthood, the act of brushing every morning has become second nature. Yet, when we go online, we don’t always take the same preventative measures with our personal...
12 Sep 2013
Check security settings in Windows Vista
The newest version of Windows is Windows 8, but we know that many of you still use Windows Vista. The best way to ensure that Windows Vista is as secure as it can be is to use the Windows Security Center, which is built into Windows Vista. The Windows Security Center can help you check the status...
3 Sep 2013
How do I keep my firewall on?
Using a firewall is like locking the front door to your house—it helps keep intruders (in this case, hackers and malicious software ) from getting in. Windows Firewall is included in Windows and is turned on by default. If you see a warning that your firewall is turned off, it could be because...
27 Aug 2013
Why does my AV software keep turning off?
Bob writes: My antivirus software keeps turning off and I can’t get it back on. Here are the most common reasons you might encounter this problem: Your computer is already infected with rogue security software The warning that you’re antivirus software is turned off might be a...
25 Jul 2013
3 ways to help protect your Microsoft account
A Microsoft account—formerly known as a Windows Live ID—is the combination of an email address and a password that you use to sign in to services such as Xbox LIVE and Outlook.com, as well as devices such as Windows Phone and computers running Windows 8. If you think your Microsoft account...
18 Jul 2013
Can I use Microsoft Security Essentials with Windows 8?
A reader writes: Can I use Microsoft Security Essentials with Windows 8? No—but you don’t need to. Windows 8 includes Windows Defender, a program that provides enhanced protection against viruses and spyware. Learn more about Windows 8 If your computer is running Windows 7, Windows...
11 Jul 2013
Help your mother be safer online
A great Mother’s Day gift idea: help your mom guard against viruses , fraud , and identity theft . Unless she's a super geek or an IT professional (or both), we know she’ll appreciate it. Make sure that your mother: Has antivirus software from a trusted source and knows how to keep...
7 May 2013
Microsoft Security Intelligence Report v14: Why antivirus software matters
The latest volume of the Security Intelligence Report (SIR) highlights the importance of using antivirus software . Antivirus software helps protect your computer from malicious software (malware) and can be downloaded or installed inexpensively or at no charge. Still, according to the SIR v14 findings...
17 Apr 2013
Filing taxes? Beware of scams
It’s tax season in the United States, which means it’s time for us to remind you about tax scams—especially email messages that appear to come from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or another legitimate organization. These seemingly valid offers are designed to trick you into turning...
26 Feb 2013
Clean up malware resulting from the Bamital botnet
On February 6, Microsoft announced that its Digital Crimes Unit had worked with Symantec to successfully deactivate a major botnet called Bamital . Below is an overview of Bamital and how you can remove it from your computer. Botnets are networks of compromised computers, controlled remotely by criminals...
8 Feb 2013
Should I use more than one antivirus program?
You don’t need to install more than one antivirus program . In fact, running more than one antivirus program at the same time can cause conflicts and errors that make your antivirus protection less effective or not effective at all. Windows 7 and Windows Vista include spyware protection called...
22 Jan 2013
What to do if you think you’ve fallen for a phone scam
In recent years, many of our customers have reported phony tech support phone calls from people who claim to be from Microsoft. These callers are cybercriminals who want to: Trick you into downloading malware . Take control of your computer remotely and adjust its settings to expose it to security...
11 Jan 2013
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