Antivirus software is designed to protect your IT system from malware, spyware, and trojans, and it’s vital to keeping your operating system running smoothly and securely, as well as safeguarding your senior living company’s identity, data, and private information. There are several types of antivirus software on the market. There are both free and paid programs, ranging from simple scans to more robust identification of and protection from new virus variants. Simply put, viruses can cause significant, sometimes irreparable damage, so every IT system should have antivirus software installed. 

Some of the problems viruses can cause include: 

  • Slowing down the processing speed of computers 
  • Loss of data 
  • Deletion of files 
  • Reformatted hard disks 

It’s crucial for senior living communities to ensure they use antivirus software to keep their IT system protected from the above issues. Additionally, most antivirus software can do more than just protect against viruses. Here are some other capabilities: 

  • Blocking of spam 
  • Defense against hackers 
  • Ensure optimal processing speed 
  • Protection from removable devices with viruses 
  • Protection from phishing attacks 
  • Controlled website access 
  • Password protection 

How to Best Use Antivirus Software 

It’s clear that installing antivirus software is a critical element to the IT infrastructure of senior living communities, but it’s also important to make sure the facilities use best practices. Here are a few tips to ensure your senior living community is using the best antivirus software and taking appropriate precautions against viruses. 

  1. External devices such as hard drives, portable USB drives, and other removable media are incredibly vulnerable to virus spreading. Ensure your antivirus software scans all these devices upon entering and protects malware from infecting your computers.  
  1. Use network antivirus software to intercept suspicious links or attachments in emails (both incoming and outgoing). Make sure your software checks all email components. 
  1. Analyze the performance reports to identify any deficiencies in your network configuration and to understand reported data such as response times. Often, the reports will include recommendations on how to optimize your system to improve performance. 
  1. Layer your security. Remove single points of failure by using both an endpoint detection and response (EDR) system as well as a managed detection and response (MDR) system. 
  1. Train employees on security awareness and policies to ensure all users understand and abide by security protocols. 
  1. Require strong passwords for network access.  
  1. Routinely test system software for viruses. 
  1. Enable real-time protection. This is a feature that some antivirus software programs have that will automatically scan data as it is loaded, immediately blocking it if it is malicious. 
  1. Keep your antivirus software database updated. Otherwise, it will become much less effective against threats. The database includes all previously identified malware threats, but as new ones are created, the database will need to be updated to ensure protection. 
  1. Enable the antivirus software logging feature. This means that each time your software scans your computer and discovers a threat, it will log it. Viruses have the ability to replicate, so they can return even after you remove them. Logging will help identify viruses and signal their return. 
  1. Don’t go cheap. Do research into the various antivirus software brands and what each has to offer. Choose a reputable company that can provide advanced protection for your senior living community. 
  1. Recommend end users use a tool such as www.virustotal.com if they come across a suspicious email attachment. They can simply drop the file into the program and it will scan multiple antivirus systems to determine if the attachment is safe. 

Get Help from Experts 

One of the focuses of RSN Technologies is to provide the highest level of cybersecurity for senior living communities. We know how important it is to safeguard the IT infrastructure that your staff and residents depend upon. Security breaches of any kind can wreak havoc on your organization, costing thousands of dollars and bruising your reputation. 

We are experts at ensuring comprehensive protection and can guide you on how to best protect your IT system. Reach out to us to learn more about our IT services.