How to Keep Your Windows PC Secure In 2021

How to Keep Your Windows PC Secure:- Windows is the most frequently hacked operating system in the world. The operating system is a common target because it dominates the market share and because Windows PCs tend to have more security vulnerabilities. While Windows 10 is the most secure version of the operating system to date, cybercriminals are still exploiting unique vulnerabilities found in Windows computers.

The good news is that most of these threats are relatively easy to protect against. There’s plenty you can do to secure your Windows PC from various threats out there. In this article, we take a look at some of the most common threats Windows users face and how to protect against them. Read on to learn more about keeping your Windows PC secure in 2021.

Risks Facing PC Users

Home users of Windows 7, 8, and 10 computers are at constant risk of encountering a PC threat at any given time. With most people working from home to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, the risk of an attack is even higher as hackers try to capitalize on the chaos and confusion resulting from the pandemic. Here are some of the most common risks Windows users face.

Malware

Malware is everywhere. However, computers running Windows OS are especially prone to malware attacks. Malware is the collective term for malicious programs and code that can cause damage and disrupt the normal use of your Windows PC. These include Trojans, worms, coin miners, rootkits, adware, and spyware.

Phishing

Phishing is one of the most common PC threats. Cybercriminals masquerading as trustworthy persons or businesses attempt to steal sensitive information from unsuspecting users through fraudulent emails or instant messages in a phishing attack. Phishers often target information such as usernames, passwords, credit card details, and other sensitive data.

Hackers

Computer hackers are programmers who explore methods for breaching defences and exploiting weaknesses in a computer or a network. Malicious hackers victimize others for their own gain. Hackers can steal your identity, lockout your data, or compromise your banking information. Keep in mind that not all hacking is malicious.

Public Wi-Fi

You can find public Wi-Fi in popular public places like hotels, restaurants, malls, coffee shops, and airports. The problem with public Wi-Fi connections is that they give hackers the ability to position themselves between you and the access point. Hackers lurking in public Wi-Fi networks can intercept every piece of information sent from your PC when connected to the network.

Ransomware

Ransomware attacks have become more common in recent years. In a ransomware attack, hackers break into your computer and restrict access to your system and files. The attackers will, in turn, ask for payment to restore access. The attackers essentially hold your data hostage and threaten to publish your data or perpetually block access if you don’t pay.

How Windows Users Can Protect Their Devices

As stated earlier in the article, most of the threats in the Windows ecosystem are pretty easy to protect against. This section will focus on how to help you do that. Here are some of the steps you can take to secure your Windows PC against the aforementioned threats.

Create a restore point

The first step you need to take to protect your Windows PC against threats is to create a restore point. A restore point is a component of the Windows System Restore utility. A restore point allows you to create a backup copy of all your data at a specific time. If future changes cause problems to your device, you can restore the system and data to the way it was before the said changes.

Use Device Encryption or Bitlocker

Use device encryption or Bitlocker to protect the data in your hard drive. Encryption encrypts your data with a complicated cipher that only your computer can decode. All you need to unencrypt the data is to enter a password. Windows 10 Home devices have Windows Device Encryption, which allows users to encrypt files and folders on command. Only Windows 10 Pro users have access to the Bitlocker encryption tool.

Install Security Software

Windows 10 devices come with Windows Defender built-in. However, the best antivirus products will have better malware detection than the native solution. Whether you choose to use Windows defender or install standalone security software, always ensure that your antivirus is up to date with the latest security definitions for the best protection.

Use a VPN for Secure Windows PC

Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to keep your browsing private and anonymous, especially when you are on a public Wi-Fi connection. VPNs are crucial tools when it comes to public Wi-Fi security. A Windows VPN tunnels your data through an encrypted server, which conceals your IP address, making it almost impossible for anyone to spy on your business.

Use a Standard User Account

There are two types of user accounts associated with Windows PCs; administrator and standard. The administrator user account gives you a higher level of rights and privileges. A standard user account limits these rights and keeps you from doing things such as changing passwords and usernames or altering security settings. Security experts recommend using a standard account for better security of Windows.

Keep Your Operating System Up To Date

Last but not least, keep your operating system up to date and keep hackers and other threats at bay. The vast majority of Windows updates are security patches and bug fixes to patch known vulnerabilities. Keeping your PC up to date is simple as Windows 10 is designed to update automatically. All you need is an internet connection, and Windows will prompt an update as soon as one is available.

Windows is the most common PC operating system and a favourite target for hackers and other online threat actors. Windows 10 is a reliably secure operating system, but it’s still vulnerable to a wide range of threats. Fortunately, it’s possible to keep your files and system safe by taking certain straightforward precautions. Keep your Windows PC secure by taking the steps above.

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Matthew Stern

Matthew Stern is a technology content strategist at techfools, a tech blog aiming at informing readers about the potential dangers of technology and introducing them to the best ways to protect themselves online. As a tech enthusiast and an advocate for digital freedom, Matthew is dedicated to introducing his readers to the latest technology trends and teaching them how to gain control over their digital lives.

Matthew Stern

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