Category Archives: Anti-virus

Why should you install Webroot Antivirus?


Webroot Antivirus is an award-winning antivirus software that is effective and affordable.

Antivirus programs are a critical cyber security defense. A high-quality program will have the capacity to block a wide variety of attacks launched from different sources.

Cyber criminals are constantly coming up with malware to infect your computing devices. Depending on the kind of malware they use, your device may stop working. You could get locked out of programs and files. Your personal information, including passwords, could end up exposed and stolen, resulting in potential financial losses and identity theft. Cyber criminals can also turn your computing devices into bots that launch attacks on other computers, even without you knowing it.

Your antivirus software is a critical line of defense against cyber attacks. Although you can’t rely on an antivirus program alone to combat cyber crime, you need a high-quality program installed on your devices.

Why choose Webroot?

As with any other software, antivirus programs vary in quality. It’s important to buy a program that meets high performance standards and offers you efficient, cost-effective service.

Webroot Antivirus, which works for PCs and Macs, is a highly rated, award-winning program. The following are several reasons you should look into Webroot for your cyber security needs:

  • Real-time, cloud-based protection. Antivirus programs generally maintain a database containing known malware and rely on it to identify and block attacks. Instead of storing their database on your local devices, and requiring you to update it periodically, Webroot maintains its database in the cloud. The database gets updated in real-time and contains a gigantic list of all known malicious programs. When new threats come along, Webroot immediately performs sophisticated analyses on them. If the program is unknown, Webroot takes steps to find out more about it before allowing it to do certain things on your computing device.
  • Less interference with your device. You can successfully install Webroot in less than a minute. The program takes up very little space on your device, leaving much more computer memory at your disposal. Furthermore, it usually performs scans in only a few minutes at most. Other antivirus programs typically take at least 10 times longer to complete a scan of your device. Even though Webroot’s scan is significantly shorter, the program is still thorough. Once it detects and deals with a virus, it performs additional scans until the results come up clean.
  • A plethora of services. You can choose among different Webroot plans, and even the most basic one contains a variety of important services. These include a firewall, ransomware protection, and the detection of fake or malicious websites that trick people into disclosing personal information or downloading infected files. Webroot also offers enhanced identity protection, keeping your passwords and other user information more secure as you browse the Internet.
  • Available for multiple devices. These days, you need antivirus programs for phones and tablets, and not just for desktop computers or laptops. Many people use their smartphones for both personal reasons and work-related tasks. Their phones are full of sensitive information. With phones, people are also more likely to use public Wi-Fi, which remains unprotected and exposes their device to unauthorized users. Webroot offers versions of its program for multiple devices, including tablets and phones. For basic protection, there are free apps available for both iPhone and Android devices.

Please contact us to further discuss picking the best antivirus program for your computing devices. We recommend Webroot for its high standards, powerful performance, and ease of use. If you’re having difficulty deciding which Webroot plan to pick, we can review them with you and make sure you’re getting the most out of whatever plan you invest in. A high-quality antivirus program is essential for keeping your computing devices and online identity safe against cyber attacks.

Are You Updating Your Anti-Virus Software Regularly?


By regularly updating your anti-virus software, you can better protect your systems from security threats.

Whether you own a small or large business, one your top priorities should be to have anti-virus software installed. After all, you never know what dangerous programs are being developed on a regular basis, especially ones which may even go undetected. Of course, though, it’s not just enough that you have security, but that you also keep it updated on a regular basis. Many people don’t realize this significance until their information gets compromised. Not keeping your security up-to-date, can be the difference between a secure network, and one that becomes susceptible to hackers. Overall, here are a few reasons why you should regularly update your anti-virus software.

#1. New Viruses On The Rise

As was briefly mentioned before, one of the main reasons to keep your anti-virus software updated, is to combat new viruses which are constantly emerging. Even with the latest updates, hackers are always looking for ways around your protection, especially when the software becomes outdated. For example, let’s say that you recently downloaded Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2015. While there’s no doubt that it will protect you from even the more recent threats, why not use Kaspersky Internet Security 2016? After all, not only will your current protection eventually become outdated, but as new viruses start emerging as the year 2016 moves forward, hackers will be able to find vulnerabilities in older software, and you’ll be more susceptible to attacks.

#2. Securing Important Information

With new viruses on the rise, not only is it easier to become susceptible if you don’t keep your software updated, but more importantly, this can also lead to sensitive information being stolen. For example, let’s say that your computer had some important files which not only included your social security number, but your bank account information as well. If a hacker got their hands on this info, there could be serious consequences for you and your business. Keeping your security up to date doesn’t just protect you from vulnerabilities, but any valuable information you have, is kept secure as well.

#3. Viruses Impact Everyone In Your Business

While it’s true that security vulnerabilities affect you, they can also have an impact on everyone in your workplace. For example, let’s say that you received a suspicious looking email from what appears to be one of your coworkers. Upon opening it, though, you realize it’s a virus that’s meant to target everyone in your network. If you and your coworkers are all connected to the same network, the virus will end up spreading throughout. Aside from your coworkers becoming vulnerable, this could also cause significant financial losses. When keeping your anti-virus software up to date, don’t just consider the impact viruses will have on you, but those you work with as well.

#4. Viruses Affect Your Business Reputation

First of all, customers are what keep a business going, and it’s important you have a strong reputation to boot. However, if your company became susceptible to an attack, what if word got out to any potential customers about the issue? Not only would they see your company as one that can’t be trusted, but even more so, they may look for business elsewhere, one where they feel safe. This could lead to a huge loss of customers, since they certainly won’t risk becoming vulnerable to attacks and/or having their information stolen. Viruses don’t just have an impact on you or even your coworkers, but the customers and your business reputation as a whole.

Protecting your company is a top priority in the business world, and it’s not just enough that you have anti-virus software, either. By keeping it updated on a regular basis, not only will your company be protected against even the most recent threats, but hackers will have a difficult time finding vulnerabilities, and your business reputation will also be secured. For more information regarding your protection, as well as ways we can further assist you, contact us today at SystemsNet.

Here come the Thingbots!


As the Internet of Things continues to become more common in our daily lives, the vulnerabilities of these devices will become more apparent and more in need of protection

Information technology experts have been dealing with malware for years now. First, worms, then viruses, then ransomware. Malware re-invented itself as the internet expanded and hackers found new ways to make money through criminal enterprises on the net. That was then; this is now: get ready for the rise of the thingbots.

The Internet of Things

Last year, the internet was awash with stories about the rise of the Internet of Things (IOT). In the new digital world all our smart devices would be able to talk to each other and connect to the smart grid. Our toasters, coffeemakers, baby monitors and our internet-connected cars will communicate with each other and with our smart houses to make our lives so much simpler, organized and automated. The IOT would learn our preferences and our habits and adjust programming based on what they learn about our wants and needs. Some experts estimate that by 2020, a mere four years from now, between 25-50 billion devices will connect to the Internet and, potentially, to each other.

When that happens, IOT will not only take in data about our lives but will send data to other external machines. For example, the smart refrigerator not only keeps tabs on the food in your refrigerator and knows when you need to order particular items. It can send the list of foods you need to order to your smart phone, and then externally to the shopping delivery network that you use.

How do botnets form?

Botnets form when malware takes command over large numbers of computers (the term “bots”, derived from robots) and organizes them into systems (nets). A botnet, then, is a system of computers infected by malware. Botnets are the reason we have most of the hacking, spamming, and malware that we face each year.

As a rule, most of us haven’t worried too much about botnets attacking our computers. They seemed to mostly target the data of Fortune 500 companies or cause denial of service issues. When you hear the numbers of computers infected and controlled by botnets, however, the scale is nothing short of amazing. Just as an example, hackers created one botnet called ZeroAccess. At its height, this botnet reportedly controlled 1.9 million computers around the world in its efforts to commit cyber crimes.

Botnets are a threat to both businesses and personal users. We all use smart devices now. We bring our smart phones, notebooks and tablets to work. Any infection in the business network will spread easily to your personal devices. Similarly, an infected personal device linking to the business network can spread the infection to the network.

Of course, corporate networks usually have more sophisticated anti-malware protections and cyber-security systems than we do at home simply because they have more secret and proprietary information that hackers want to steal. Since there are various types of malware, though, any computer user is at risk. Some botnets send spam, some collect credentials or steal intellectual property, and still others send internet users to malicious websites. Once individual devices are voluntarily connected to each other, who knows what evil hackers will accomplish on a worldwide scale.

So, What are Thingbots?

Thingbots are botnets made of infected devices from the internet of things. Controlled by the owner of the botnet, they have the same capacity for malicious activities as traditional botnet malware.

Wireless routers and modems are the most likely targets for thingbots because they are directly connected to the internet. As our home appliances and workplace machines become fully automated, cyber-security will need to protect data at each segment of connection. The more data points connect, the more companies will need to employ security checkpoints.

To read more about thingbots, read the October 2014 article “Botnet malware: What it is and how to fight it,” on

To talk more about botnets, thingbots, and what it means for your cyber-security, please contact us. We want to help your business stay cyber-secure.

How Data Security Goes Beyond your Anti-Virus Software


While anti-virus software is a great way to protect your information, your data security plan should go deeper.

As businesses and individuals, we often install anti-virus software as a means to protect our data. We have digital files that are important and contain crucial information that we don’t want in the hands of anyone else and anti-virus software ensures malicious software won’t make its way onto our PC and into the hands of hackers. That is true for personal computers and business computers. At home we sometimes store passwords, tax records and other important data on our computer. At work we may have customer data that would create a major liability if shared with anyone else. Protecting this data is essential and anti-virus software creates a strong line of defense. However, data security goes well beyond your anti-virus software and here’s why.

Viruses are just one way to infiltrate data

Hackers probably consider viruses the best way to infiltrate data and that is because once installed, there is little you can do to keep them out of your files and other important data. However, viruses are just one way that hackers and criminals infiltrate data. While they may be effective and that is why you often hear of the importance of anti-virus software, they are not the only means of getting to your data and that is why it is important to protect yourself in a variety of other ways.

Use data encryption – it’s easy and quick

There are tons of data encryption tools that can be used to encrypt data on your hard drive. If you ask around, barely anyone, even businesses, use data encryption to the degree that they should. Data encryption is easy and quick thanks to the software out there that does it. Programs like TrueCrypt are designed to encrypt your hard drive, flash drives or even external storage devices. If someone were to get their hands on your computer or hard drive, they would not be able to view the files without knowing your encryption password. Essentially, data encryption ensures that everything a criminal could get their hands on would be useless.

Use strong passwords

There’s a reason websites require use of numbers, special characters and capital letters in your passwords and it’s not just to frustrate you by making you forget your passwords constantly. Strong passwords are hard to decode and programmers that make password decoders are very efficient at what they do. It literally takes just minutes to code a script that tests numerous words and phrases as your password. If a hacker has your username, they could probably crack a simple password in a matter of minutes provided that the website doesn’t have security in place for failed login attempts. Using strong passwords is your first line of defense.

Use 2-step authentication

Google has recently introduced a 2-step verification and authentication method that is extremely effective. It makes it so that your Google account can’t be hacked into without the hacker having possession of your smartphone. How? Google sends a 6 digit code that is generated every 30 seconds to your smartphone and uses that to authenticate your login attempt. There is no way to access the code unless the hacker had access to your mobile device. Essentially, even if someone obtained your password they would still be locked out of your account. More and more sites are starting to implement 2-step authentication and if you have important data on those sites, you should use it. Paypal does the same thing with their “Paypal Security Key” which is transmitted through text messages.

Secure your internet/network

Everyone knows why you secure your WiFi. You don’t want anyone using it. Most people would say because they don’t want someone else slowing down their internet or using the bandwidth they pay for. However, there’s also the risk that someone could infiltrate your network and access data. If your network is unsecured, they could access your router settings using your IP address and lock you out of your own router. Anything connected to your network would be within reach. Network security is extremely important and easy to do with the WPA2 and and WEP network security options that most routers use.

Backup your data

Data loss can be just as crippling as data ending up in the hands of the wrong person. Make sure you backup your data regularly. There are online services that provide data backup for low costs or you can regularly backup your hard drive to an external drive yourself.

Data security goes well beyond your anti-virus software and there’s a number of things you can do to protect your data. If you have any questions, please contact us.