How to Protect Yourself from Hidden Malware in Downloaded Freeware Applications

3 min read

Our world is digital and everyone has a computer or a phone. The problem with that is that most of us keep our data on our phones or computers, and rarely do we still keep hard copies of something unless we are legally obliged to do so. So, many people download applications and just keep pressing yes until we install everything, including things we really do not want on our phones and computers. This is something that can easily be avoided with a couple of changes in our thinking, not to mention the way we do things. In order not to have malware on your devices, here is what you should do.

Install an Anti-Malware Software

Plenty of free antivirus softwares come with their own anti-malware tools. For the PC, MalwareBytes is one of the best free tools you can download. Some malware loads with the system, in which case, you will need to scan the system prior to it actually booting. Some full versions of antivirus applications have these options. It is better to be safe than sorry.

For mobile phones, there are so many antivirus applications that you can literally get paralyzed when choosing one. In order to prevent yourself from downloading something, you should first protect your PC, as even with your best effort, you can download things without knowing what you downloaded (the golden era of Windows Messenger and the malwaremoticons you got for FREE).

Install Only From Trusted Sources

This is one of the reasons why Linux systems are not prone to viruses. You download software on Linux systems only from official repositories. People who are keen on installing stuff themselves are probably already knowledgeable enough not to install malware on their system. Linux has viruses, it’s just that when you download software, you download signed packages from official distribution servers, unless you add custom servers. In that case, you should already know what you are doing.

For Windows and mobile phone users, this is a bit tricky. You can install everything with a simple yes, providing administrator privileges to an application. This means that it can do whatever it wants with your system, because you said yes. If you’re gonna keep clicking yes, read a review about the software and download it from a trusted source.

Scan Your Device Every Once in a While

Today, it is easy to run scheduled scans every week, or something similar. You should do that with all of your devices, especially the ones you consider important. If you want them and your files, to stay healthy, you should simply put, scan them every once in a while, just like you would (or wouldn’t) go to the dentist regularly.

Protecting yourself from unwanted malware in free applications is easy. You need to install an antivirus and anti-malware software. You should read reviews about applications and download them only from trusted sources. Remember to scan your devices every once in a while and you will be good to go.