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How You Can Browse Safe And Stay Secure Online

Updated on April 17, 2018
Miebakagh57 profile image

Miebakagh57 has been a civil servant for exactly 34 years and seven months. I hold a Bachelor of Arts Hons. degree. Thank you.

Introduction: malicious softwares

Weekly, if not daily, malicious software enter the market. How do you know the guinea ones from the bad ones?

This is a hard test but it can be done. Microsoft, for example, has a site on which to download its guinea software. You just go to the original Microsoft site and download a free or paid version.

Never download a freeware of Microsoft from an independent vendor.

Pre-caution

You turn on your computer start menu to start Windows. Have you any security software installed on your computer or desktop? Did you turn on your antivirus? Did you turn on any security tool to protect your computer and its system?

Before proceeding on this discourse, I would like us to attempt a practical lesson. Let’s turn on security software or an antivirus to scan our computer. I had Microsoft’s Security Essential MSE installed on my PC. Now I click it to scan my system for less than thirty minutes. This short scan is followed later by another custom scan. A full scan follows with the same tool while my PC is online. Whatever security tool you have on your PC you can apply it.

Most of the time we go online without remembering to turn on an antivirus gear. Let’s begin our talk.

Malware can spread through the internet

An internet facility
An internet facility | Source

Sub-standard malicious software

Is your computer being infiltrated? Be aware that some antivirus software vendors have substandard software that enabled virus, spyware, and malware to infiltrate your computer. A little while ago, I received a e-mail in my Gmail. It was located in the spam folder. The message was very short and clear to the point. The sum of $500 daily commission has been computed and to be paid to me. I do not know the purpose of this affiliate Payment. All that I have to do is to submit my PayPal ID, and I can be paid the commission. A password was given to login with a link.

What is more worrisome and suspicious is that the content even begs me to hurry up and move it to my Gmail inbox. But I did not compile. Would you do it in your right mind?

I think it is only those that want to get rich overnight can respond to such a mail, but at great risk to lose the little money they may have in their baking account.

Panda free antivirus review

Free cloud antivirus and now Panda free antivirus, receive editors rating of 5 x. This antivirus software not long ago dislodged the well reputed and princely Bitdefender from its number one supremacy as a virus removal tool in an independent AV competition.

That this is so means it has acquired innovations that other antivirus gears may lack. In fact, its maker has affirmed that its intuitive intelligence is without parallel in the antivirus technology.

Panda free antivirus is now much lighter, very fast and user-friendly. Being the first cloud-based antivirus, other antivirus software vendors will have a hard time to beat it on cloud technology feat. Panda is being constantly innovating in research.

This antivirus software works best when you connect your computer to the internet for a scan session. The download is fast and easy and takes just six minutes of your time. The installation will take up to two hours depending on how fast your internet connection is and with some annoyance if they are flaky internet connectivity. You can download the gadget here. Download it at this site

http://download.cnet/com/Panda_Free-Antivirus/3000-2239.4-10914099.html

This software comes with its security toolbar. Enable it when you are prompt. But ensure you use your discretion in retaining or deselecting the Yahoo! and Mystart default as homepage and search providers respectively or you will find “it annoying.” If you had Panda cloud antivirus already on your computer, you must uninstall the old version 3 first before installing the new Panda Free Antivirus 15.

What is more, when you download and install it, it checked your computer status for compatibility with other software already installed on your system. For example, I want to test how far this software is compatible with Windows Defender Offline WDO. So, I just go and download it without uninstalling WDO. My computer a Windows 7 still works fine.

The short scan, now critical scan, is highly recommended before the custom or long scan. It offers real-time protection. Its ads only serve to encourage you to upgrade to pro.

This new version of Panda free antivirus 15 includes innovative in “USB drive vaccine and the anti-exploit technology” that is cutting-edge in the online security solution.


Rating for Panda free antivirus

4 stars for Panda free antivirus

Panda free antivirus 15 promotion

New Panda free antivirus
New Panda free antivirus

Interface of Panda free antivirus scan

A scan about to begin
A scan about to begin

Comparison of antivirus software products: feature price vendors

Products
Features
Prices
Vendors
 
 
 
 
Windows Defender Offline (WDO)
works online and especially offline, weekly updates, removes malware,spyware and virus; includes short, full and custom scan.
free ware
windows microsoft
avira free antivirus
slow, good and can be annoying depending on the type of computer/tablet use
free ware
avira
Panda free antivirus
First free "cloud-based" antivirus; pro version s paid. works specially online; removes all malware and spyware
pro $39.99
panda security
Malwarebyte
scan and removes all sorts of malware.;flash scan only in paid version.Nowadays, you can get the paid version on trial only for 14 days period.
paid edition $24.95
malwarebytes organization
superantispyware
traditional scan, update mirrow, works both online and offline
free ware
superantispyware
microsoft security essential
like WDO works both online/offline, removes all virus and malware, first traditional free antivirus from Windows
free ware
windows microsoft
Some computer Antivirus Software

Panda free anti virus scanning a computer

A computer scan
A computer scan

My computer is a Microsoft Windows

When you bought a new personal computer or a desktop, what internet browser is identify with it? My computer is a Microsoft Windows 7. And as such, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) is discovered with it. Almost all my friends, acquaintances, relatives and business associates have a windows computer. Microsoft Windows computers and desktops seem to be most popular and prefer always by more than half of all computer users.

Okay, let’s get down to the question of the browser.

The world's first web browser is Netscape Navigator or communicator. Google Chrome is now the most popular web browser. As noted, the browser that comes with Windows machines is I E. Various updates from version 7-10 has been released. This edition of IE 10 at present is enhanced by Bing. Whatever variation your browser is, you have the opinion or prompting to upgrade it to the current update. This is one sure and safe step to stay secure online.

Having said this, it is to be realized that other variations of the web browsers are not very popular. Google Chrome, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, and Mozilla Firefox are the most used web browsers. Apple’s Safari seems to take a fourth place followed by Opera, in the fifth place.

Whatever browser you prefer and use, update them regularly.

A Microsoft Windows computer

A cumputer
A cumputer | Source

The world first web browser

Nescape Navigator
Nescape Navigator

Speak your mind

The world's first web browser is likely

See results

What is a web browser?

Let’s take a look at few or some of the web browser in operation.

A browser or web browser is an electronic software application that you can be used to source, receive and retrieve information online. You can even use it to receive emails, files, videos, photos and images, electronic devices in the form of downloadable for example, e-books and software.

Additionally, all these items can be upload by the same browser.

The beauty of this is that you can use a friend’s or relation, or an office computer for doing all this. For example, you can solicit a friend to use his/her computer to check your mailbox and answer a mail in your inbox. When you are done, just sign out, and your mail remained safe and secure.

Again, that you can use any computer to respond and sent a mail from your inbox other than your personal computer is one of the most beautiful things the computer can do via, the browser. You can do all this anywhere in the world. A web-browser has no edge or limit to communicate. It is without a border. What is your opinion of this service? How do you think this product can be more useful in another way? If you like technology than you have a positive answer to this issue. Almost every person got carried away by the latest technologies.

Brief history of web browser

With the development of the internet, the web-browser comes into prominence. The first web browser in the world is the worldwide web (no spacing) www. The www was later developed and released as a mosaic or model for all future browsers. And so, the mosaic became the only framework or practically, the good example on which all and subsequent web browsers were innovated. Thus, “the world’s first popular web browser was born.”

The five most used web browsers

Web browsers
Web browsers

Trade mark interface of Google the world's most popular browser

Google Chrome
Google Chrome

Browser war

Netscape Navigator results first from the mosaic. It soon became very popular and was even regarded as the world’s most popular web browser, like its parent mosaic.

Then enter Internet Explorer (IE). The browser war or market competition between browsers has begun. Internet Explorer which was also molded after the mosaic was soon to overtake the Navigator!. Opera had to join the competitive war but failed woefully! It made a market share of at least1% in use, an insignificant figure compares to Navigator 90% and IE 95% respectively.

The war had to take on a wider dimension with the realization of Mozilla Firefox. Others foremost in the races are Apple, Safari, and Chrome.

The entry of chrome into the race in September 2008 is commendable. Having overtaken IE and all the other browsers combined, it reaches a market high by April 2014.

Chrome by Google is now the most popular and the most used web browser in the world, helping at most 1.1 billion people to surf safely online. Popular, not because it is the best, but because many prefer for its security and safety features that are still being brought up to date.

Presently, Microsoft’s IE has the highest market share of all web browsers and followed by Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera http://www.netmarketshare.com/ One other relatively new web browser is Maxthon International Asia. New in the sense that it used a technique called cloud-based technology. It is the foremost in using cloud technology in the browser at present; and set the pace for all other "cloud-based" browsers.

Web browsers are downloadable on mobile phones

Mobile Phones
Mobile Phones | Source

Another high power internet facility that can be infected with malware

An internet facility
An internet facility | Source

Browser safety

It has been said the internet or online world is a very dangerous place. The same reasoning holds true for the offline world likewise. There is this guy who goes online to surf the web. He was a Firefox fan. He installed the Avira browser safety adds-on on his machine, but when he attempted to download a program, he will be directed to Avira website; while others who use chrome will receive a warning before landing on such sites. Does this mean the Firefox browser is unsafe? The answer is no. I have experience the same issue with Ask Tool Bar. While downloading Firefox on my machine from Mozilla, the ask tool bar was enable. I try to visit my affiliate site, but it sent me to upgrade its tool bar on ask internet site. I uninstalled it from my computer. All this shows that many legitimate web sites on the internet at times are compromised. In such case, even the best and most reliable browser could not be of much help. So you should not add any extension or adds-on on your computer without a better understanding of what the software do on the internet.

Google Chrome, IE, and Mozilla Firefox are safe browsers for example. But you can render them useless by adding unreliable toolbars, extensions, etc on them.

Unsafe sites online

How many websites do you think is out there on the internet? 300,000? 500,000? 100,000,000? Apart from this, what about the many blogs both corporate and private? There are billions of websites on the internet. That is the truth. All these sites although real and lawful are compromised daily. This is also a truth to be aware of. By virtue of some of these sites being via media, they become unsafe. They can be like to the man in the middle attack. Visiting these unsafe sites online also means compromising your machine to malware and phishing. These threaten your privacy and security. These sites on which you are directed will install malware. on your computer and at the same time will also trick you into sharing “your username and password or sharing other private information” www.google.com/transparencyreport/safebrowsing/

Safety of your browser

Understanding malware sites

A malware is any software application trying to download and take control over your computer. But what is a malware site? I had a hard time trying to imagine this or get a clear meaning of this in a dictionary. Mal- means bad and site is a location or address. So, a malware site could mean a bad location address or URL on the internet. It tricks you to land on a phishing (false) website instead of the guinea web site you are trying to visit. For example, you want to visit Microsoft Download Center, but it took you to another counterfeit center with a Microsoft Logo. What do those sites aim for? They seek private information on billion dollar corporations and individuals.

Another is identity theft and attacking of computers and cyberspace. “If your site has been infected”, inferring that these malware sites not only gathered private information but also compromised your blog or website personal and corporate as a malware entity, “it is generally because some vulnerability has allowed a hacker to take control over your site” Google opined.

Surprisingly, this malware was at the same time installed and run automatically. Once, your computer, browser, site or blog has been fully compromised with malicious contents, they are as good as “one potential vector of malicious content” or “malware infection vectors.” You can take care of all these by installing good antivirus software from trusted vendors. Download and scan your computer with this Microsoft free software-Microsoft malicious software removal tool first http://www.microsoft.com/pc-security/microsoft-security-essentials.aspx than download and installed Microsoft Security Essential on your computer if you have none at

Thereafter, run automatic update always. In other words, update this security patch and antivirus always whenever a new update is made available. Some online shopping websites, for example, eBay has they own antivirus patches. These can be trusted if you go shopping with them or you are one of their marketing affiliates. eBay maintains Trusteer Rapport the antivirus software for its website. It usual protected the website you visit, but you should not compromise your password with it.

Malware can include man in the middle attack

Man in the middle
Man in the middle

Software system and vulneabilities

A vulnerability in a computing is any defect, flaw, weakness, etc in software or hardware systems that leave the security of the system organizational, corporate or personal open for detection and attack by a third party.

The attack is an exploit in part or the whole system when compromise, a denial of service results. Your machine meanwhile becomes under the control of another power which you do not intend and want.

The flaw or defect arise mostly in the architecture of the software. Your machine is as good as the makers made it be. It is not 100% perfect. It comes into the market in very good condition, but misuse by you or a third party can open a hole in it for an attacker to work exploit.

Browser vulnerability

The issue of vulnerability is very important here. Your browser whether you use Chrome, IE, Firefox or your favorite has one or two weakness in it. These defects are not realized when it was released into the market. It was tested and retested because anything can happen when you go online with the software. Let’s take chrome as an example. It is an open source browser in that it is still subjected to development. It is expected that user experience with the software can help bring in more issues and hence, a better way to make it better. Have you wondered why Windows 8 has evolved from Windows8.1 to Windows RT 8.1 in a relatively short time? The user's experience is still subjecting the machine to changes.

How many of us are aware that Google does subject its chrome browser to trusted software vendors that will detect any vulnerability in the software and get paid for it? Within twelve hours or so of the detection, Google will update chrome to a more secure level than ever. We, the users of chrome are required to submit any issues we found while using the software. I had uninstalled my chrome browser at most two times within three years. Each time, I was asked why I uninstalled it. My feedback like yours if any help Google to make all its products secured http://www.google.com/about/appsecurity/ Your browser whether Chrome, IE, Firefox, etc is a vulnerable software. Google has released a newer version of chrome. The latest update now is 65.0.3325.181. To get it,

  • Open your chrome browser.
  • Go to the chrome wrench located at the extreme right end of the search box and click on it.
  • In the small new window that opens, scroll down to “About Google Chrome.”
  • Click on this bar.

Your Chrome browser will automatically be updated within few minutes, provide you have the internet connection. You should on Tuesdays visit this on your computer to ensure you are up to date with the latest device released.

For Firefox,

  • Launch Firefox.
  • Move your cursor to the extreme left of the browser and click on Firefox.
  • A new window appears.
  • Move cursor down to “help.”
  • Move cursor down to “About Firefox” and click.

The system will automatically search for updates and update your browser.

Alternately, if you made chrome your default browser in Firefox,

  • Launch Firefox.
  • Click the chrome wrench on the extreme right and a small new window appears.
  • Scroll cursor down to the (?) icon and click to open help menu.
  • Another small new window appears.
  • Click on “About Firefox” in this new window.

Again, the system will automatically search for updates. This is the beauty and simplicity of it.

Coupled with vulnerability is browser exploit. If you experience signs like change on the homepage, search page, any changes in your favorites and your settings of internet opinion, etc there is no question that your browser has been compromised.

Prevent this. Check your firewall setting. Install or turn on firewall setting.

  • Click the start menu or button on your computer.
  • Type firewall.
  • In the new window, click “Windows Firewall”.
  • Click “Turn Windows Fire Wall On”.
  • Close window.

Tip: Do not uninstall Windows firewall in preference to another superior or stronger fire-wall settings. These may contain malware codes. Whatever firewall setting your PC comes with retained it.

  1. Update your browser and software regularly. Much has been said about this above.
  2. Do not open e-mails and attachment from an unexpected source.
  3. Do not make a download from an unexpected and untrusted source.

With this, you can know your browser is not infected and you can browse safely online. There was this relative “Zero Day” vulnerability that attacked I E browsers discovered by Microsoft. Microsoft Security said it is a “limited targeted attacks” on IE 7-11. The attack will direct you to visit a malicious website. So be on sharp alert throughout. “This would typically occur,” said Microsoft “by an attacker convincing someone to click on a link in an email or instant message.”

Microsoft gives notice that you update your systems as instructed above. You can get additional help at www.microsoft.com/security/default.aspx please bookmark this page in your browser.

Here you get help from Microsoft to:

  • Protect all your/ its products you use.
  • Install the latest security updates.
  • Fix safety scanner; and
  • “Explore Microsoft Support system.”

HTTPS Everywhere: https://www.google.com/ is more secure than http://www.google.com/

Secure HTTP
Secure HTTP

Http/Www. Will Sooner Give Way to Https/Www. in Search Engines

Unsecure HTTP
Unsecure HTTP

Password and protection

A third party if not trusted, can gain access to your computer without your leave if your computer is not protected by a strong password. You can create a strong password and secure them for your computer, mailbox, online banking accounts and much more.

A strong password depends on the combination of the different characters and symbols used on your computer keyboard, and the length of the characters. A minimum of eight to thirteen characters is considered medium. Fourteen to nineteen is strong and best. To create a strong password, do these things.

  • Choice four letters from the upper case alphabets A to Z.
  • Choice four letters from the lower case alphabet a to z.
  • Choice four characters from the Arabic numerals 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.
  • Choice four special characters from any of # ^ $ % ( _ * + : < ? > ! / { [ : ] } etc but do not use the @ sign.

If we choose two characters each from the four categories, the password will be either weak or medium in strength, and this is easy to break by hackers and spammers.

An access to a single computer by an attacker anywhere can give to the attacker to access the database of an online corporate giant.

Passwords are created by easy to remember sentences, etc. and by substituting some of the words, with letters and so on. For example,” my exam will start on 9 September 2014.” will become MXwso9th9;t019. I test this with a password checker and it is strong. Create your password and check its strength before going further. A strong password even depends on how long it takes an attacker to crack it. Will it take minutes, hours, days, a week or a month or years? This is so vital. Test your password strength here https://howsecureismypassword.net/

A password should be very strong. Medium to a weak password is very easy to quest and break by a hacker.

  1. Do not use common words like Tom, Vespa, Money, God, Monkey, etc.
  2. Do not use computer keyboard characters "1234 or qwerty,"
  3. Change your password often every week but not every day.
  4. Use a different password for all your different accounts or emails. Your Facebook password should be different from your Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail account etc. If you use “Dido” for all of these and when dido is cracked by an attacker, you are as good as zero.


Concluding

A web browser is an electronic software application you use to receive, retrieve and source for information online. You can use it to send and respond to all your mails.

Update your browsers weekly as new updates are release by your trusted vendors.

Use a strong password for your computer and each mailbox ID.

Do not allow your computer to be used by an untrusted person.

To your online safety!

© 2014 Miebakagh Fiberesima

Please readers, your import to make this article better is welcomed.

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