Protecting your devices from cybersecurity threats is not as straightforward as it might seem. Even if you are tech-savvy enough to predict and identify a virus or malware, you should still be wary because there are quite a few aggressive threats that require special knowledge to deal with.

As for those who are not too familiar with the threats one encounters online, it is even more necessary to learn about them so that you know how to react.

Below, you will find 8 strategies that will come in handy when you want to protect your computer, smartphone, and tablet from malware and viruses.

protect device from malware

Ignore Shady Messages

The first thing on the list is shady messages. You may receive an email with a questionable attachment or a URL. Or, someone might send you a message on social media or another communication platform.

As soon as you suspect that something is not right, it is better to ignore such messages, even if they come from someone you already know. There is no need to risk clicking on a link that may infect your device.

Use Ad Blocker Extension

Online advertisements are annoying to deal with in the first place, but if they pose a danger, it makes even more sense to install an ad blocker extension on your internet browser.

You will get to enjoy a better overall browsing experience and have fewer worries about clicking on an advertisement that could redirect you to a landing page crawling with cybersecurity threats.

Stick to Complicated Passwords

Stick to Complicated Passwords

As a rule of thumb, try your best not to use the same password for different accounts. It might feel tedious and bothersome to change passwords regularly and memorize them from scratch.

Nevertheless, it is a good policy to have. If you use the same password for all of your online profiles, remember that when someone gets hold of your password, they might gain access to all kinds of online profiles you have.

Do Not Rely Entirely on Antivirus Software

Using antivirus software is a must as reliable anti-malware tools eliminate detected threats before they cause problems to the system. Nevertheless, it is not enough to have antivirus software running in the background. You also need to run custom disk scans regularly to check if the antivirus did not miss a potential threat.

And even then, it is not recommended to leave all the protection to an antivirus. You also have to be cautious and act smart when on the internet.

Try Cleanup Tools to Remove Temporary Junk

An anti-malware tool scans the system and seeks infected data to delete it. Sometimes, the sheer number of temporary storage files and other junk makes it difficult for the antivirus to scan the device efficiently.

Therefore, you should consider getting cleanup utility software that can work as a means to clean unwanted files. In addition to making things easier for the antivirus, such a tool will also help with keeping the device’s storage in check.

You can find more information about cleanup tools and how to deal with the storage issue on your computer here.

Keep Your Devices Updated

Missing the latest operating system version puts a device at risk. OS developers are keeping up with the latest cybersecurity threats and they react to them by pushing new updates to protect users. 

It is no secret that many people associate operating system updates with new features and overall performance upgrades without considering that these updates are also handy for the security of their devices. 

Even though some OS updates may take a long time to download and install, they should be one of your priorities if you are interested in fortifying the security from cyber threats on your device.

Work on Backing Up Data

Work on Backing Up Data

Backing up data is not a direct way to prevent malware and viruses, but it is still worth it as a cautionary measure. You cannot predict when something might happen to your computer or smartphone that will cause hardware problems, so a data backup is not just about cybersecurity threat prevention.

To back up data, you can use either an external HDD or a USB flash drive (if you do not have that many files), or go for a more digital approach and transfer data to cloud storage.

Keep in mind, though, that cloud services do not offer a significant amount of storage unless you pay a monthly fee. 

Follow the Latest Cybersecurity Trends

The last bit of advice is pretty straightforward. If possible, try to keep up with the latest cybersecurity news and trends so that you know what is happening and what you can expect.

Being aware of the latest threats will give you an edge as you can be one of the first to learn about ways to counter such threats, which leaves your devices not as exposed.