Every day it seems, there is a new threat to computers. Various viruses and worms make their way across the World Wide Web. Companies around the world with shady business practices use adware and spyware to monitor your activities online and try to sell you things. These same programs can even be used to steal important information, like credit card numbers, social security numbers and bank account numbers, which can lead to your identity being stolen. Adware, spyware, viruses and worms abound on the internet, especially on dating sites, but there are things that you can do to protect yourself.
The first and most important thing is to install antispam, antivirus software on your computer. Companies like McAfee and Symantec make the most popular antispam, antivirus software but there are others as well. Spam often carries adware and spyware, so anything you can do to block spam from coming into your computer should be done. While viruses generally don't steal your information, they can cause your computer to be sluggish or to not work properly. This can make you more vulnerable to adware, spyware, and other problems.
The next step is to install a firewall. When you are visiting dating sites, especially ones that you are not familiar with, they may try to download items onto your computer. If you have a firewall, you can stop them from downloading anything from their site, lik adware, spyware, worms, or viruses. The firewall works both ways, as it will stop them from uploading any of your information while you are at their site. Firewalls are very easy to install, see your owner's manual for more details.
It is also important when visiting dating sites, or any other sites that you are unfamiliar with for that matter, to do your research. You can check the BBB online or the Chamber of Commerce where the business is located to make sure they are on the up and up and are not just a site used to download adware, spyware and other computer maladies onto your computer. A legitimate site will have contact information including phone numbers and physical addresses. Be wary of any company that is located outside your home country unless they have a solid reputation in your country, because you will have even more difficulty recouping any possible losses from a foreign company than you will from a domestic company. Needless to say, don't give your credit card number or email address to anyone you are even slightly uncomfortable with. Check your credit card's policy with regards to fraudulent charges. Check your statement carefully every month and report any suspected fraud immediately.
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, trust your gut. If there is any doubt in your mind about the legitimacy of the site, do not give them any information until you have done your research. Unfortunatley, lots of dating and matchmaking sites take advantage of people, but you don't have to be a victim. Just using a few simple precautions will help protect you against those who want to infect your computer with adware, spyware, viruses and worms.