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Safeguarding Against Viruses and Malware 
Audience: All

Operating System: All
Article Number: 484 .8.0

Updated: 7/5/2013 9:49 AM
This article contains information on how to keep your computer protected against malware and virus threats. The most vulnerable applications are the operating system, web browsers, Java and Adobe Reader.

Note: KIS recommends the use of the Secunia Personal Software Inspector (PSI) to manage updates on all Windows machines. This comprehensive software will install most available software updates when in use, meaning it is unnecessary to run the following updates manually. For more information on Secunia PSI, visit Update Insecure Programs with Secunia PSI. The following instructions apply to any computer not running Secunia PSI.


Software vulnerabilities are discovered regularly. Once discovered, software manufacturers create updates for their products in order to keep them as secure as possible.

Some applications (particularly operating systems) usually default to updating automatically, where as others require you to run the application before they indicate an update is available. 

The software applications listed below are some of the most often attacked, and therefore require the most frequent updating. In order to keep your computer secure, please be sure to update these applications regularly when prompted or on your own.

Operating Systems
You will be prompted when updates are available. Instructions for updating your Operating System are available on our website; follow one of the links below:

Web Browsers
You will be prompted when updates are available.

  • Internet Explorer (IE) - Update Windows operating system (see above)
  • Firefox 
  • Safari - Update Mac OS X (see above)

Adobe Acrobat Reader
You will not be prompted automatically when updates are available. Therefore, please open Adobe Reader periodically and check for updates:

  1. Open Adobe Reader
  2. Click on the Help tab
  3. Choose Check for Updates

Java is the software on your machine that is needed to view websites and applications that use Java programming.
Java will prompt you when an update to Java is available. Please install these when available. Alternatively, to manually update Java:

  1. Windows XP, Vista and 7: Click on the Start Menu/Orb and select Control Panel.
    Windows 8: While in Desktop Mode, open the Settings Charm by pressing the Windows key and the letter "I" simultaneously. Select Control Panel.
  2. Select Java1
  3. Click on the Update tab
  4. Select Update Now

Mac OS X

Your Mac operating system may automatically update Java. To manually update Java on a Mac, visit the Apple website for instructions

1Note: If you do not see a Java icon, you will need to switch the view mode:

Windows Vista: In the left side of the window, select Switch to Classic View.

Windows 7 and 8: In the upper right corner, click on the View By dropdown menu, and select Small icons.