Now that the media has warned you about what could happen the next 2 weeks with security breaches on a user’s computer, they also gave Cyber Criminals a head start.

Why would you even call out something so significant? Why not let the manufacturers of antivirus and anti-malware software do their job with silent updates to defend against the threat of the next wave of cybercrimes? In a recent article posted by Market Watch, they’re informing users to run security tests on their computers within the next two weeks, before the masters of the botnets have a chance to regain control. A botnet is a term given to computers that act upon themselves with no human interaction. It’s also called a zombie computer. Malware is the leading cause that turns computers into bots or robots that make up the botnet.New Security Threat

Now that the cat is out of the hat, you need to always be aware that there are risks in browsing the internet and sharing files. You need to be smart as this is the best defense against cybercriminals. Here’s a list of things you should follow daily to protect yourself from identity theft and other cybercrimes;

  1. Make sure your Antivirus program is up to date. Most Antivirus programs have automatic updates enabled, but check yours to make sure.
  2. Make sure your operating system is up to date with the latest patches and or fixes.
  3. Be careful what links you click in emails. If you don’t know the sender, delete the email.
  4. Tiny URLS sent via social media like Facebook could be linked to a dangerous web site that can install viruses without the users consent or knowledge.
  5. When searching or Googling be careful on what search results you click on. Not all search engine results are safe. I would recommend installing the Web of Trust Add-on for Firefox and or Internet Explorer. You can get your add-on free at This add-on will provide the reputation of a web site before you click.
  6. Do not have your computer save passwords. Try to use passwords you can remember, but are hard for others to guess. Mix your password with uppercase and lowercase characters with a number and special character. A strong password should be at least 8 characters long.
  7. Look out for emails with offers that look too good to be true, it’s probably a scam.
  8. Stick with the web sites you know and trust when shopping online.
  9. Keep tabs on your banking statements daily in case of suspicious charges. Most banks provide this service for you, but check on what your bank does to protect you.
  10. Be careful what hot spots you’re connecting to. You may be connecting to a potential hacker’s hot spot in a cyber café or any other business that offers free Wi-Fi.

It easy to let your guard down from time to time especially if you never experienced a threat on your computer, but it takes only one time to change your life forever!

Be smart!