Barebones Microsoft Windows Security

microsoft-windows-logoBarebones Microsoft Windows Security: a reader asks…

Hi Chris, I have a computer with Microsoft Windows, and I’d like to ask you for a brief list of what programs I should install to protect myself. Thanks!

Ok, here’s a barebones quick list:

  1. If you’re using Windows XP or Vista, upgrade to Windows 7. If you’re using Windows 8, upgrade to Windows 8.1.
  2. Upgrade from Windows Update to Microsoft Update (so you get updates for Windows and other Microsoft software) and set it to automatically update
  3. Use the top-rated internet security suite – Bitdefender Internet Security 2015
  4. Use the top-rated anti-malware program – Malwarebytes Anti-malware Premium, turn on the setting to scan for rootkits (under Detection and Protection) and enable the self-protection module (under Advanced Settings)

If you want a little extra protection, you can add Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit 5.1 and choose the recommended settings (only available for Windows Vista and newer). If you find this conflicts with your installed programs, you can uninstall it. We do know that it conflicts with Adobe Acrobat DC.

If you want extra protection for your web browser against exploits, you can add this (but it may slow down your browser performance): Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit Premium

By all means, this is only a barebones list of automated tools to help protect your computer. They won’t protect you against your own actions, and they won’t provide 100% protection. You can drastically increase your protection by following my Safe Computing Practices.

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