A virus can ruin a perfectly healthy computer. A virus can steal your personal information and even frame you for collecting child pornography, according to an article in The Huffington Post. Websites and viruses are constantly changing, and thus there is no way to be absolutely certain that the site you are about to visit is virus-free. However, there are at least three ways by which you can greatly improve your chances of only visiting virus-free websites.
McAfee Site Advisor
McAfee Site Advisor is a free downloadable program put out by the popular antivirus software company McAfee. McAfee visits thousands of websites thousands of times per day and tests them for security threats such as adware, spyware, viruses and other malicious computer code. Based on this research, McAfee places a small site rating icon next to your search results and on your browser. These icons alert you to potentially risky sites so that you can avoid them. You can download the program at the link below.
Web of Trust
Web of Trust is a free downloadable program that is similar to McAfee Site Advisor. Web of Trust has more than 5 million members and claims to rate more than 24 million websites. Web of Trust also allows you to select certain options to block sites that may be inappropriate for children. Moreover, Web of Trust warns you about potentially dangerous links in Gmail, Windows Live Hotmail, and Yahoo! Mail. If you do not want to download the program, you can still go to the Web of Trust website and type in the site you are concerned about. Web of Trust will then provide a free report concerning that site.
Set Your Browser Security to High
Most Internet browsers allow you to raise the browsing security level. This will help to block dangerous sites. To raise the browsing security level in Internet Explorer, go to the Tools menu and click "Internet Options." Then click the "Security" tab and the "Internet" icon. Then move the slider to High.
Purchase Antivirus Software
Sites are constantly changing, and thus there is no way to be absolutely certain that a site you are visiting is free of viruses. Thus, it is critical to purchase an antivirus software program for your computer. An antivirus program will detect viruses and delete them to prevent further damage to your computer. Norton Antivirus and McAfee are two of the most popular antivirus software providers.