Download Store Safety Tips
It can be tempting to download software and other digital content from the Internet, especially with all the new and exciting programs being created from day to day. However, if you’re not careful with the download store you choose, your device could be at risk for malware infections. The tips below can help you stay safe while purchasing products from a download store:
1. Forget automatic downloads.
From time to time, you may stumble upon a site that will try to download and install software on your computer automatically, meaning, whether or not you asked it to. Stay away from these sites at all costs, unless you are completely sure of its safety. Automatic or drive-by downloads are often used by infected sites to plant malware in your computer. Upon encountering them, reject such downloads instantly. Click Cancel as fast as you can or just close your browser. If you failed to stop the download and the file is already in your computer, give it a virus scan or just delete it straight away. Unless you know for sure it is safe, do not open the file.
2. Stick to products made by trusted sources.
The first cardinal rule in the use of download stores is to pick one that is well-known and reputable. More than anything, the safety and reliability of the site should be considered. Luckily, a quick search online can give you all you need to know about a particular download store before you begin downloading.
When purchasing software, do not accept and begin the download unless you have read and understood the documentation. There are so many websites on the web that feature software reviews and ratings, so do check them out to add to your peace of mind. Just make sure you’re on an independent website and not a marketing website that a software developer himself has put up.
3. Make use of your antivirus software in checking potential downloads.
Having solid antivirus software that’s updated is one of your best safeguards against system threats. Use this software to scan files prior to installation. This can be usually done by right-clicking on the file and then choosing the scan option. The antivirus software will check the downloaded software and tell you whether or not it’s safe to install.
4. Look at the file specs for signs of authenticity.
A good way to check file authenticity is by comparing the name and size of the file to the information provided on the download store’s website. File specs can be easily viewed if you right-click on the file and select Properties. If there are any disparities, that could mean that the file is infected.
The tips above are but some that you have to practice when purchasing digital content from download stores. Needless to say, never ever download any file unless you have ascertained its safety.
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