When is a computer ever safe from viruses?

I've been trying to learn more about how computers get viruses, because I've had at least 3 PCs get badly infected, 1 of those very recently, and I'm getting frustrated about it.

What I essentially came up with is: You can get a virus from ANYWHERE and ANYTHING you do on the internet.

Facebook, deviantart, youtube, gamespot, etc., I've heard that all these sites have had issues with trojans being "routed" through them, directly onto your computer. And if you DO download things, viruses can be attached to any file type, .MP3, .JPG, .DOC, .XLS, .MOV, etc. etc. You could get a virus even if you're just downloading a simple wallpaper from google images.

So, somebody who is actually educated about these things: am I correct in coming to this conclusion? Is a computer ever 100% safe from viruses at any time on the internet? This is what my research seems to be telling me. I just want someone to confirm it (or correct me if I'm wrong).

(Also this only seems to apply to PCs. I've never known anyone who got a virus on a Mac. They get software/hardware issues but NOT viruses. Which is why I'm not going to use PCs anymore. Unless someone surprises me and tells me there's a "safe" way to browse with a PC....)

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    A PC is never safe from a virus (unless its off), even if you not connected to the internet, a program you installed from a CD/flash drive can give you a virus..or even a hacker that jumps on your computer can installed a virus.

    Source(s): 13yr computer experience
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  • Ron M
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    First, I am a computer tech. In the 10 years that I've been working with computers I have had only one virus and it came from a friend's E-mail. So, as you can tell, it is possible to work with the internet and not get viruses if you are careful. The same rules have been in effect for many years, and if followed you can stay pretty safe.

    Don't open files or e-mails from people or places that you don't know.

    Never click on a pop up window.

    Run a good anti virus program and use it.

    Run a good anti spyware program and use it.

    Keep your Microsoft operating system up to date. Best method is to have auto updates turned on.

    Now for Macs. They get viruses just like any other computer. If it's connected to the web, it vulnerable to attack. I've cleaned many viruses out of Macs.

    Oh, one more thing. I've download thousands of things from the web without getting infected. You just have to be careful. And scan every download with your anti virus program. If you don't know how, it simple. After you have downloaded a file, and before you execute that file, right click on it and choose "Scan with" your anti virus program.

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  • ?
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Technically, no platform (Mac or PC) is EVER safe so long as you are connected to the internet. True, Macs almost never get a virus, but it's not like they are non-existant either. Truth be told, your facts aren't quite right either. In order to get a virus from a file, the file must be capable of executing code. This means that a jpg cannot give you a virus. Any file that is connected to a program with internet connection protocols CAN. This includes files like .mov, .mpg, .mp3, etc because they all have licensing protocols that can route you to infected files (even office documents like .doc can have macros that route you to infected files). What people seem to not realize, is that anti-virus is NOT a preventative measure. It is a CURE. A FIREWALL is a preventative measure. You need both to keep yourself safe.

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  • 1 decade ago

    There is a safe way to browse the internet on a Windows platform. Use a limited user account, because of the restrictions set upon limited user accounts, specifically not being able to install software or make changes to system files, no malware will be able to infect your system.

    Mac uses this very principle, but they can get root privilege (administrator power) by a sudo method, which involves temperately becoming root (administrator) when they type in their administrator password (for installing software), once done their account becomes limited again.

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  • 1 decade ago

    A computer (and future computers) can never be, and will never be 100% safe from computer viruses. Viruses are just code that tell what the computer to do. It's like telling my brother to hit my other brother. The same thing. A virus is just like a regular program, it just tells the computer bad things to do. A computer is really stupid. It just waits until it is given something to do. As for viruses, there are new ones coming out every day. If you want to be safe from computer viruses, just have a firewall and antivirus software.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The Computer doesnt even need to be downloading anything to get a Virus. You can get Infected just by simply having it online without a Browser Windows open!

    Wait I was Wrong- There is times when a Computer is Safe Online, When it's Powered Off.

    Yes its rather cut and Dry...

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I agree.

    My computer is giving me problems now from a supposed virus.

    This make me so mad!!

    There are people out there who plant these things just to screw up your computer.

    Every computer my family and I have owned has had some sort of virus. I didn't know about that Mac thing... next time I'm getting a mac.

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  • Well, I use PCLinuxOS. I NEVER have had a virus or any other malware.

    It's free and you can get it here:

    http://pclinuxos.com

    It feels like windows, but it doesn't suffer from windows problems - EVER.

    The only way to not catch a virus from the internet is to never go on the internet. Or use Linux.

    FYI: did you know that MAC's use a version of Linux?

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  • 4 years ago

    Especially if you are surfing on internet, even in safe mod you can catch everything. Safe mode is referring to the way it's working the system, it means to windows not to the network or security. If you have an anti virus running, so yes you are protected by this, not by the Safe Mode.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    There is a safe way in not getting a virus but you cant access the internet.

    This is call safe mode, when you turn on a pc press F8 i think and then go on safe mode and safe mode is also faster. There are also a safe mode with internet but i'm not quite sure about that.

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