5 Computer Security Fundamentals You Should Know

published Nov 18, 2022
2 min read

Computer security is not a thing that everyone has concerns about. Some people, despite the fact that they are aware of potential cybersecurity threats, are not too fussed about these threats because they have never encountered them personally and believe that it is going to continue.

The reality is that malware and other threats are more prominent than ever. At the very least, one should be aware of computer security fundamentals to create a decent protection layer and prevent certain issues, such as worse device performance, data loss, or personal exposure.

Let’s take a look at some security fundamentals that computer users ought to follow.

General Understanding of the Device

The first thing to focus on is having a general understanding of what your computer has to offer, especially in terms of built-in tools.

Different operating system engineers take different approaches. Not utilizing the available features is often a waste, or even worse—by not knowing certain things, you could be exposed to greater risks.

For instance, if you are on macOS, you should know what is Accountsd on Mac and what it does to your passwords. The same thing can be said about SIEM & XDR for MS Windows users.

Generally, it can take a while to learn about the ins and outs of your device, especially if you have not bothered absorbing the information below. Nevertheless, considering the importance of building a solid foundation in understanding computer security fundamentals, you should not skip this step but rather start with it.

Solid Anti-Malware Solution

Antivirus software is something that usually comes as part of the package on your computer together with the operating system.

However, the issue with that is the fact that certain integrated antivirus tools are not up to par when it comes to keeping current cybersecurity threats at bay. Sometimes, a tool is too outdated to offer decent protection.

Instead of taking a risk, you should look at some of the best available antivirus software and get it for your computer. Make sure that the antivirus tool is running in the background all the time to detect and eliminate threats.

Finally, from time to time, run a custom disk scan as an extra precaution by having the antivirus scan the computer’s drive.

Password Management

Password management is another fundamental of computer security, especially when you are online. If someone accesses your computer despite you protecting it with a sign-in password, it is usually the result of carelessness.

Threats online, on the other hand, are a different matter. There are plenty of examples of hackers exposing the personal information of people’s accounts. Imagine what happens if someone gets your credentials that you have been using throughout multiple different platforms on the Internet. Exposure once means exposure multiple times.

Most people are too lazy to bother using different passwords, not to mention how simple the combinations usually are.

Ideally, you should use a different password for every account you have. On top of that, a password should be difficult to crack. Memorizing the details can be tricky, which is why password managers are the answer.

Awareness of Shady Instances

During the time you spend online on your computer, you are bound to have pop-ups, emails, or messages on various communication platforms and social media asking you to click a link or download something.

The temptation to do that is encouraged by an offer, such as the chance to win a free smartphone. As a rule of thumb, you should ignore these shady URLs because they are more than likely to redirect you to a malware-infected landing page or download a virus on your computer directly.

Sure, you could argue that an antivirus tool ought to be enough to solve the potential problem, but why risk it when you can be smart and circumvent the threat by ignoring it?

Fraud Prevention

Virtual Private Networks

The odds of your home network getting breached are relatively low. A potential hacker is unlikely to target a specific individual, not to mention that most, if not all, Internet service providers provide security.

It is a different story with public networks, however. If you are in a hotel or a library with your laptop and connect to public Wi-Fi, don’t expect it to have the necessary security protocols. If anything, these networks are prone to cyberattacks that can then affect your device.

Avoiding public Wi-Fi is the most straightforward solution. However, if you have no other choice, use a virtual private network to encrypt your details and protect yourself from a potentially insecure public Internet.


So there you have it. The computer security fundamentals mentioned in this article ought to be enough to help you build a solid foundation and protect the device and yourself from potential cybersecurity threats.

Once you have the basics down, you can look to explore more complicated solutions and improve security further.