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Email Attachments And Viruses - Protecting Your Computer From Lurking

May 17, 2008
Just as we depend on our computers for fun and entertainment, we simultaneously depend on software installed on that computer to protect it against persistent Internet threats. Our computers have become indispensable for both work and play, and we ought never risk the health of our PC's by downloading programs that could be dangerous to them. Knowing that, we need to be observant for indicators of potential harm when downloading files from email messages.

As you are no doubt aware, there is a persistent threat of harmful emails sent from people who take pride in causing harm to your computer or attempting to separate you from your finances. The damaging emails are usually sent with attachments that cause destruction to your computer and key - if not all - data residing on it.

The emails themselves are harmless, but opening the attachment launches a virus or "worm" that make its way onto your PC and possibly also the computers of anyone you have listed as a contact in your email address book. These aren't simply annoying or irritating; they can totally wipe out your ability to use your computer in a matter of seconds.

Frequently, the emails come disguised as from either a familiar address or a seemingly innocuous email name carrying a real attention grabber as a subject line. The content of the message entices you to open the attachment without providing much explanatory information.

There are many means of avoiding the receipt of these worms and viruses, and you need to be aware to adequately protect yourself and your computer. First, you should never open an email from someone you do not know, especially if it has an attachment.

Although some of these emails will automatically go to your junk mail folder, some will make their way through to your email inbox. If you don't personally recognize the name or company, then do not open it, but rather immediately discard it into your junk email file to alert the email server you use that you will not accept emails from this person again.

If you do receive an email from an unknown source and open it, make sure to never open the attachment itself. Some attachments are automatically scanned for viruses by the email server prior to delivery. However, to be on the safe side, simply delete it.

Additionally, if the subject matter is not one with which you are familiar, delete the message and don't even respond - as that simply confirms the validity of you email address to the sender, and they'll continue to send more in the future.

Your best bet for avoiding all of this is to use an anti-virus program that safeguards your computer from PC viruses, even when you do open a destructive attachment accidentally. These threats are real, but very preventable if you follow email attachment safety.

Finally, when you send an email yourself, you should follow the same guidelines and never send an attachment to someone who is not expecting it. Otherwise your email may simply be discarded on the receiving end.
About the Author
For practical PC security software information, please visit www.pc-security-keys.com, a popular site providing great insights concerning issues that help you to combat viruses , spyware , adware, and more!
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