Safety Tips for Download Store Purchases
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 don’t choose your download store carefully, you could end up with a malware-infected device. The tips below can help you stay safe while purchasing products from a download store:
1. Be wary of 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. Steer clear of these sites at any cost, unless you are absolutely sure it is safe. Drive-by or automatic downloads are most often an attempt by infected sites to save malware to your computer. Reject all such downloads as you encounter them. 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. Do not open the file, unless you have confirmed it is safe.
2. Buy products only from trusted sources.
The first cardinal rule in using download stores is to choose one that is well-established and reputable. More than anything, the site should have a reputation for being safe and reliable. Fortunately, a fast online search can provide all you have to know about a certain download store before you start downloading.
Accepting and initiating a software download is a big no-no if you haven’t read the documentation. There are many sites on the Internet that review software, so go ahead and visit them to give you more 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 rock solid antivirus software that’s up-to-date is one of the most effective ways of guarding your computer against digital contaminants. Use your antivirus software for pre-installation file scans. You can usually do this by right-clicking on the particular file and clicking the scan option. The antivirus software will give the downloaded software a check and tell you if it’s safe or not.
4. Look at the file specs for signs of authenticity.
One way to check a file’s authenticity is by comparing its file name and size to what’s listed on the download store’s website. File specs can be found in Properties (right-click on the file). 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, do not download any file if you cannot ascertain its safety.
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