As the colder weather sets in, so does the uptick in virus infections. Normally we are only talking about computers and servers but today we mean a literal biological virus that human beings can get infected with.
The cold weather makes people stay indoors more often and the cold weakens our immune system so that is a perfect recipe for an increase in airborne virus infections. This can affect your business as employees spread it around the office and you have key personnel that endup having to call out sick and the workload piles up.
Even though we are talking about viruses that humans contract, we are also a company that remains one of the top providers of IT services Houston has to offer—so we are indeed talking about computer virus infections as well.
Computer viruses can cause potentially significant damage to your business simply because, inorder to correct the damage they do, it takes valuable time away from doing tasks that are actually profitable such as taking care of your customers. The holiday season sees a lot of employees taking a vacationand having a more lax demeanor at work. There are company parties, gift exchanges and a lot of other distractions to get your cybersecurity guard down. Just like with human viruses, taking the initiative to learn how viruses spread and learning ways to mitigate your risk of exposure is the best defense.
How To Prevent Computer Viruses When Dealing With:
Your computer can contract a virus simply by visiting a website that has some type of malicious code or downloadable file hidden in the buttons that you click to navigate the site. The website itself could have been hacked and had the malicious content added or the website owner could’ve intentionally put the malicious code there themselves.
Even though no website is completely protected against hacking attacks most of your better, well-known sites take more precautions to mitigate their exposure to having their website compromised. Avoid visiting shady websites such as sites that offer software at very deep discounts, pirated software, generic knockoffs, and other similar sites.
Naturally,that won’t guarantee you will come across a legitimate looking site that has been compromised but will mitigate your chances of exposure. You can also check out the validity of sites first by looking up their domain in Google to see if you get any results that discuss the website in question is a potential threat.
Some types of email attachments aren’t always what they seem and they can carry a vicious virus within them. If someone you don’t know has sent you an email with an attachment do not click on it as that can trigger the virus toinstall on your computer or what security experts call a payload. Security experts call these types of attachments executables because they are actually programs not documents. But some documents even aren’t what they seem, a common virus going around is actually now deployed in a file that seems like a harmless pdf file. Even if the email in question is from someone you knowbefore you click on that attachment verify with that person that they indeed sent you an email with an attachment. That extra measure can be the difference between a full-blown infection and a failed attempt from a hacker trying to infiltrate your system.
As mentioned before the Internet has many sites that offer software for download; much of it is legitimate but some of it is pirated or infected without the site visitor knowing. Even software that looks like it may have a legitimate use and may actually even function as a legitimate program can carry a hidden virus that can be triggered at any time. If you are going to use open source software or other free software, download it from the site that is run by the developer themselves rather than third-party websites.
You should be very careful when using removable drives such as USB external drives, USB flash drives, or media cards. Drives can be infected with viruses that execute their payload upon being inserted into a computer without you even having to do anything at all. Never use a drive or removable media source that you found as it could purposely have been left there in hopes of someone picking it up and inserting it in the computer out of curiosity.
Your First Line Of Defense
Even with all the providers of IT services Houston has to offer nothing is as effective of a firstline of defense as antivirus software. Most of your modern antivirus software for commercial use not only scan your computer but it checks your email, scans web pages, removable media, andeven your hard drive to detect, quarantine, and/or remove viruses that are present on your computer. Even though these programs do cost extra money and taketime to set up and properly configure if it stops even just one attack it makes it all worth it.
How To Prevent The Spread Of Biological Viruses In The Workplace
Cleanliness Is Healthy
While this shouldn’t be a great revelation to anyone, the cleaner your workspace is— the healthier it is. Keeping things like your mouse and keyboard wipe down with a disinfectant every so often can be the difference between catching the flu or catching a break.
It’s really not that hard to clean your mouse and keyboard, all you need is a cleaning cloth and a solution that is approved for electronics.
When you start to consider all the different surfaces and people you come into contact throughout the day you realize it’s actually fairly easy to track those germs right back to your keyboard or mouse that you touch every day.
Also,it’s not like we’resix years old— wash your hands frequently throughout the day. If you sneeze or coughon them wash them again. And it wouldn’t hurt to keep a small bottle of hand sanitizer at your workstation just in case you come into contact with someone who is sick either by shaking hands, then breathing around youor other forms of germ transmission. Hope you didn’t read this before lunch.
Don’t Turn Your Workstation Into A Kitchen
We all have that one person in the office that has enough food at their desk to start their own cooking show podcast right at their workstation. Don’t be that person; not only is it unclean, but it’s alsojust plain unprofessional.
When you eat at your desk it’s natural that crumbs are going to fall from whatever you’re eating. Those crumbs get lodged in between the keys on your keyboard as well as other crevices on your desk. And with all the other microorganisms floating around the office your desk might as well be a buffet for them to feed on if you have all those crumbs around. And let’s be honest with all the microorganisms floating around the office and how many people have come by your desk and probably touched your stuff or breathed on it— do you really want to eat your bagel and cream cheese right there at your desk around all those germs— yeah, let that sink in for a minute.
Cover Your Mouth When You Sneeze Or Cough
This is another one of those tips that even six-year-olds know— I mean they even turned the proper way of coughing into a viral YouTube dance. Okay, so maybe we’reexaggerating a little bit on that last point but you get the idea—cover your mouth when you coughor sneeze!
Also, as a provider of IT services in Houston; companies allow us in their offices and around their employees all the time. We can’t tell you how many times especially during the cold months that we’ve seen employees sneezing in their cubicles all over the computer without covering the mouth. Literally, they just spread millions of microorganisms all over their desk and beyond.
The easy solution is to simply turn into Dracula when you have to sneeze or cough— turning your head into the crook of your arm as you sneeze or cough,keeps germs from spreading all over the place in a disgusting spray of microorganisms. Sure, it sounds weird but it’s better than the alternative—the flu or a nasty respiratory infection.
Common Sense Is The Best Defense For Both Kinds Of Viruses
In the end,common sense really is the best defense for both viruses, computer and biological. Since we aren’t doctors, all we are giving you is common-sense advice that doctors themselves give. Where we do specialize, however, is in preventing computer viruses as well as other IT services Houston companies need. So when you need the best in IT services and virus prevention; call Marimon, and get the IT services you need from the best in the business.
Contact us today for a free consultation and we will come up with a plan that is custom tailored to the needs of your business no matter what size it is.