4 steps to protect your computer

Step 1. Keep your firewall turned on

What is a firewall?What is a firewall?

A firewall helps protect your computer from hackers who might try to delete information, crash your computer, or even steal your passwords or credit card numbers. Make sure your firewall is always turned on.

How to turn on your firewall 

How to choose a firewall

Learn more about firewalls for your operating system

Step 2. Keep your operating system up-to-date

What are operating system updates?What are operating system updates?

High priority updates are critical to the security and reliability of your computer. They offer the latest protection against malicious online activities. Microsoft provides new updates, as necessary, on the second Tuesday of the month.

How to update your operating system

Microsoft security updates: Frequently asked questions

Learn about using Microsoft Update

Go to Microsoft Update


Step 3. Use updated antivirus software

What is antivirus software?What is antivirus software?

Viruses and spyware are two kinds of usually malicious software that you need to protect your computer against. You need antivirus technology to help prevent viruses, and you need to keep it regularly updated.

How to get antivirus software

Get regular antivirus scanning with Windows Live OneCare 

Get a free safety scan

Learn about viruses

Learn more about virus protection for your operating system

Step 4. Use updated antispyware technology

What is antispyware software?What is antispyware software?

Viruses and spyware are two kinds of usually malicious software that you need to protect your computer against. You need antispyware technology to help prevent spyware, and you need to keep it regularly updated.

Get antispyware technology

Use Windows Defender, free antispyware for Windows XP SP2

Learn about spyware

Learn more about spyware protection for your operating system

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