Malware threatens more than just PC's and Windows - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Malware threatens more than just PC's and Windows operating systems

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - McAfee released their latest "Threats Report" Tuesday. The quarterly report claimed that there was a 23% jump in malware from the beginning of 2012. Millennium 3 in Jonesboro sees a number of people come through their doors with just that problem.

"A short time ago it just started slowing down, getting slower and slower and eventually I think it almost crashed because you couldn't even go on the Internet on it," Ann Rossell told Region 8 News. 

The computer at her work recently became infected with viruses. It got to the point, Rossell said, where it was difficult to do much of anything on it.

"The computer, it's a must. We have to deal with all of our records and files. Everything is electronic," she said.

Kyle Standiford with Millennium 3 said on average they see three to four people an hour with some kind of infection on their computer, tablet or phone.

"Maybe not so much with viruses but now like, malware, it'll redirect you to maybe a different website that you weren't intending to. Some of it's not even family safe," Standiford said. He said it's more than just computers coming through the door.

"The iPhone and Android devices especially we've seen an increase in," Standiford said. "The Apple iPads. I guess because there's more of those that people have purchased, they've been on the market longer. So we've seen an influx of those."

Standiford added that they're seeing more of a particular operating system come through the door. A system that he said many people have a misconception about.

"Used to, Macs were safe, hackers didn't really mess with them," he told Region 8 News. But, he said, with the increased popularity of the iPhone and iPad, that's no longer the case.

"If you're gonna send something out to a million people, you know it was more likely you'd have a million PC's out there and you'd get return on that. Where as now you're seeing more Macs and Apple," Standiford explained.

He said keeping your device completely devoid of viruses is near impossible, but did pass along a few tips for keeping your computer safe.

Standiford advises using the same search engine every time, that way you can become familiar with it.

"So if you see something pops up you can say 'I know that's not familiar.'" Standiford said.

He added, if you use an antivirus software, listen to the warnings they give about downloads.

"Your antivirus may warn you and say this doesn't look safe, but if you download it anyway, you just told your antivirus to ignore this," Standiford said. "So then, even if you've spent all that money in protection, it doesn't matter."

Standiford also said if you plug your phone into your computer to charge it, make sure neither device have a virus. He explained viruses can transfer over to different devices that way.

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