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Some Internet threats try to access your computer when you are surfing or navigating websites on the Internet. Several online activities need your extra-caution in order to avoid falling victim to a malicious website.

Pharming is a relatively new malicious technique directed to stealing personal information and sensitive data. It is similar to phishing but eliminates the e-mail “baits”, instead compromising the victim’s system by secretly installing malicious code on the computer or modifying the hosts file (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosts_(file)#Location_in_the_file_system for location of the hosts file). Alternatively, the cyber offender use DNS cache poisoning to compromise the DNS server. On a computer that fell victim to a pharming attack, that means that you can enter the web address yourself, without clicking a suspicious link, but unknowingly land on a malicious website that looks like the real thing. One example of a sign that your computer might have been compromised is that your Internet banking website suddenly looks slightly different in layout, or some links do not work properly. Also, make sure that the secure website you visit (identifiable by the “https” instead of “http” in the beginning of the address) has a valid certificate form an authority service such as VeriSign and that the name of the certificate corresponds to the site you are viewing. Should you have any doubts, avoid using the website until you are 100% sure it is the legitimate one.

About AV-Comparatives

AV-Comparatives is an independent organization offering systematic testing that checks whether security software, such as PC/Mac-based antivirus products and mobile security solutions, lives up to its promises. Using one of the largest sample collections worldwide, it creates a real-world environment for truly accurate testing. AV-Comparatives offers freely accessible results to individuals, news organizations and scientific institutions. Certification by AV-Comparatives provides an official seal of approval for software performance which is globally recognized. Currently, AV-Comparatives' Real-World Protection Test is the most comprehensive and complex test available when it comes to evaluating the real-life protection capabilities of antivirus software. Put simply, the test framework replicates the scenario of an everyday user in an everyday online environment – the typical situation that most of us experience when using a computer with an Internet connection. AV-Comparatives works closely with several academic institutions, especially the University of Innsbruck’s Department of Computer Science, to provide innovative scientific testing methods.
If you plan to buy an Anti-Virus, please visit the vendor's site and evaluate their software by downloading a trial version, as there are also many other features and important things for an Anti-Virus that you should evaluate by yourself. Even if quite important, the data provided in the test reports on this site are just some aspects that you should consider when buying Anti-Virus software.

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