How To Recover From A Computer Virus

I WAS ATTACKED By Michele “Shellie” Melendez

I did it.  Not even sure how I did, but I did.  All I wanted to do was search for a quote I had heard and I went to a site and boom. I did not even know what was happening; I could not use my mouse to stop the attack and felt pretty helpless. 

I think you can guess what happened. I caught one – a virus on my computer and it was the scariest thing ever.  The noise coming from my computer was blaring along with the message in the background going off, and my helplessness growing. I was unable to stop everything from continuing.  Oh yes – one more thing the continual message that all of my information would be compromised made me feel like I was drowning in this sea of fog.

Recover From A Computer Virus

Things like this should not happen to me – I am the wife of a Data Protection Specialist and I did it.  Of course, my first thought was to call the number the message was giving me because of course Microsoft Office will help. But the last thing you ever want to do is call.  It is a trap; a ploy to get more information from you.  And I almost called.

What did I do? My husband advised me to shut down the computer. Now data protection is a term often used in my home, yet it impacted me like never before – so I knew I had to start working on changing passwords; and I have a lot of them. Because I have been taught well – I have a password manager where I keep all of my passwords and started working on updating all of the banking information first, the cloud hosting service account and then my email accounts. I started working on other passwords, etc… like I said there are a lot of them.

Here is what I learned from this computer virus experience.

DON’T PANIC. Panic will cloud the mind.

DON’T WORK IN FEAR. You may not know what to do, but most likely do the opposite of what you think you should do – i.e. when the Microsoft number came up – I thought I should call and a little birdy said think twice.

DON’T BE EMBARRASSED. This happens. All I wanted to do was look for a quote and I went to a site that said they had the quote. I did not do anything wrong, but something wrong happened.

A PASSWORD MANAGER IS CRUCIAL. Make sure to invest in one. It is a great investment to keep your information stored – especially when working under pressure!

SET-UP 2 FACTOR AUTHENTICATION (2FA). Upon logging in, there are two steps for logging in thus you will be notified on another device that you or someone is trying to log in to your account.

Key here is that I did not have any important items on my local drive but, on my dropbox account and backup online. Dropbox is a cloud storage service where I keep a lot of information. My husband advised me that this makes his job (He is my “IT Guy”) easier having my data off the computer. Also having backups makes it easier so he can restore the computer back to normal.  I trust my husband knows what he is doing and he has taught me well.

Have you ever gotten a computer virus? Did you know what to do and how to recover your data?


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