In a recent security intelligence report released by Microsoft, it turns out that a striking number of personal computers around the world (24%) are not well protected despite the availability of myriad antivirus software. It was also indicated in the report that in the second half of 2012 alone, out of 10 computers, two and a half were not protected by an updated antivirus.
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The report also showed that the countries with the highest number of unprotected PCs include Egypt (40%), India (30%), and Russia (29%). The US, South Africa and UK are also included in the list with 26%, 24%, and 21% of unprotected PCs respectively. The UK is tied with Brazil and Australia.
The dangers of PCs working “naked”
As Microsoft pointed out, computers without proper protection are 5.5 times likely to get infected by viruses and malware compared to computers with some form of updated antivirus software.
As cybercriminals continuously reinvent the way they trick people to unknowingly install malware on their computers, there are a number of ways how unprotected PCs can get viruses. The company research revealed that cybercriminals may bundle malware in PDFs and Word documents commonly sent as attachments in emails and in illegitimate software activation key generators. Often, these things feel and look like the real thing on the surface, but the truth is when they are opened or activated, they can send viruses or malware into the computer.
Another surprising news indicated in the report is that computer owners who believe that their devices’ antivirus software are doing their job may actually be not doing any work at all. Microsoft pointed three reasons why this happen. First, the antivirus software may have been disabled by the bad guys. Second, it is possible that the antivirus software was not actually installed into the system. Lastly, the user may have allowed the trial period of the antivirus to expire or it is already out of date.
Any of these things can leave a computer defenseless against virus and malware attacks. What is worst is that if the owner is not aware that the PC does not have proper protection, he or she is also at risk of becoming a victim of different cybercrimes, including identity theft, phishing and scams.
A word of advice from Microsoft
Microsoft strongly encourages PC users to regularly check the status of their antivirus, ensuring that it is actually installed, current, and turned on. If you have not any antivirus in place, Microsoft recommends that you download one today. You will never run out of options as there are a number of vendors that provide antivirus software that require minimal work to set up. However, make sure that you get one from a trusted vendor to ensure that you and your PC will get the protection you deserve.
This article was penned by Ericka, a freelance writer who has written a number of posts about a wide variety of tech-related topics. She also regularly writes content for PC Doctor, a computer repair Edinburgh specialist.
This article is contributed by Ericka and posted by Rizwan Ahmad Author and founder of cyberockk.com, He is a tech blogger from India and he loves to share his thoughts by writing articles on this site to the different topics related to technology world,