10 free ways to keep your computer virus free

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Summer blockbuster season is here, but check out this warning first before you click around the web looking for trailers of hot movies you want to see.

Read more: Hackers steal millions of LinkedIn passwords: Here’s what you need to do

Viruses abound in summer blockbuster trailers, hot celebrity searches

Real Simple reports that there can be a lot of dangers with free movie downloads. Offers of sneak trailers or even of an entire film for download can hide viruses. (Trailers found directly at a film’s official website are generally safe.)

If you take the bait, the virus can load a keylogger onto your computer that captures every keystroke you type going forward. With your usernames and passwords in a criminal’s hands, they can then use your computer as a bot to spam others or take over your online accounts.

The same warning applies to any form of unknown audio or multimedia download, such as a leaked album from a dubious source. Treat it as a threat and know that you need to avoid the temptation to click.

But note this well: The threats aren’t only limited to the movie world!

DJ Armin van Buuren tops a list of the most dangerous celebrities in cyberspace, according to anti-virus software company McAfee.

For instance, searching ‘Armin van Buuren’ plus any of several terms like ‘free MP4,’ ‘HD downloads’ or ‘torrent’ means you have nearly a one in five chance (17.92%)  of running into an infected link.

Rounding out the Top 10 list of dangerous celebrity searches we have:

Celebrity Percentage
1 Armin van Buuren 17.92%
2 Luke Bryan 17.64%
3 Usher 16.67%
4 Britney Spears 16.39%
5 Jay Z 15.83%
6 Katy Perry 14.86%
7 Amy Schumer 14.72%
8 Betty White 14.03%
9 Lorde 13.61%
10 Nina Dobrev 13.19%

10 free antivirus and virus removal tools

You don’t have to pay big bucks to protect yourself online. These products all offer free downloads that will ward off viruses before you’re infected or remove a virus if your computer has one!


Before you get infected

Avast Antivirus Home Edition – Free antivirus software with anti-spyware, anti-rootkit and more. For PC, Mac and home network protection.

AVG Antivirus for Mac – Offers real-time background protection and automatic virus database updates. Compatible with OS X Mountain Lion or later.—¹

AVG Antivirus Protection FREE – Antivirus software that automatically protects computers from viruses by providing timely virus database updates and protection. For PC, Mac and Android.

McAfree Site Advisor – Offers rating signals next to links in your search to let you know if they are safe or not to click. For PC.

Microsoft Security Essentials – Offers real-time protection that guards against viruses, spyware and other malicious software. For PC.

After you’ve already been infected

Malwarebytes – Identifies and removes malware and scareware from your computer. For PC.

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Mobile – Protects your phone or tablet from malware, infected apps and unauthorized surveillance. For Android.

Malware Anti-Malware for Mac – Removes adware and malware. For Mac.

SUPERantispyware – A free malware remover that also works on rootkits, spyware, adware, worms and parasites.

SpyBot – Search & Destroy – Detects and removes spyware of different kinds from your computer.


Read more: How to download your past Google searches

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