Also each day, over 12 million Google search queries contain at least one hacked website.
Google discovered these startling facts through its Safe Browsing Initiative, which they founded five years ago in an effort to clean up the Internet and keep their users safe from viruses, Trojan horses, and the like.
How They Do It
The 9,500 malicious sites that are created every day are either legitimate websites that have been corrupted with malware, or websites that are built specifically to infect your computer with malware and phishing techniques.
For those of you who don’t know what these terms mean, malware (short for malicious software) is software designed to access your computer system without you knowing it and wreak all kinds of havoc. Malware includes computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware, and other unwanted software.
Phishing is what happens when hackers set up fake websites in an attempt to steal sensitive information from you, such as your usernames, passwords, and credit card information, by pretending to be a legitimate website.
Phishing techniques have become more and more sophisticated. Many hackers create fake eBay and PayPal websites that are only up for an hour or so in order to avoid detection. And many of these phishing sites also contain malware. If your computer gets infected with malware, it’s extremely difficult to get rid of it.
How to Clean Up Your Computer and Protect Yourself
The best way to prevent getting infected is to make sure you have a good firewall and strong, up-to-date antivirus software installed on your system.
Don’t visit or click on any questionable websites, don’t open any questionable email attachments, and make sure your computer system and plug-ins are up-to-date.
Also, many browsers contain built-in protections against malware and phishing attacks, and most search engines warn you before you click on a website that may be compromised.
But if you have been infected with malware, below are a few removal software products you can use to clean up your computer:
- ClamXav (http://www.clamxav.com) is a free, open-source antivirus client.
- Norton Antivirus (http://us.norton.com) is available for purchase and use on a Mac.
- McAfee Virus Scan (http://home.mcafee.com) is popular software for use on a Mac.
- SUPERAntiSpyware Free Edition (http://www.superantispyware.com/) is great to remove malware on your system.
- CCleaner (http://www.piriform.com/CCLEANER)is a great tool to remove the bad entries and files left by malware on your computer.
- Pocket Killbox (http://pocket-killbox.en.softonic.com/) is a very easy-to-use tool to delete bad files and folders.
To avoid becoming a victim of malicious websites, always use common sense when surfing the Internet. With a little common sense and the right computer tools in place, your computer can be malware-free.