You can protect yourself against viruses with a few simple steps:

If you are truly worried about traditional (as opposed to e-mail) viruses, you should be running a more secure operating system like Linux and, to a lesser extent, Apple's Mac OS X. You never hear about viruses on these operating systems because they represent such a small part of the market. That’s why they are targeted by far fewer viruses than the Windows operating system.

If you're using an unsecured operating system, then installing virus protection software is a nice safeguard. Many anti-virus options are available for free online.

If you simply avoid programs from unknown sources (like the Internet), and instead stick with commercial software purchased on CDs, you eliminate almost all of the risk from traditional viruses.

You should make sure that Macro Virus Protection is enabled in all Microsoft applications, and you should NEVER run macros in a document unless you know what they do. There is seldom a good reason to add macros to a document, so avoiding all macros is a great policy.

You should never double-click on an e-mail attachment that contains an executable. Attachments that come in as Word files (.DOC), spreadsheets (.XLS), images (.GIF), etc., are data files and they can do no damage (noting the macro virus problem in Word and Excel documents mentioned above). However, some viruses can now come in through.JPG graphic file attachments. A file with an extension like EXE, COM or VBS is an executable, and an executable can do any sort of damage it wants. Once you run it, you have given it permission to do anything on your machine. The only defense: Never run executables that arrive via e-mail.

By following these simple steps, you can remain virus-free.



How e-commerce is changing people’s shopping habits

Even though e-commerce has been around for a long time only 5% of all goods produced are bought online. But e-commerce is still growing. It is breaking into traditional markets more than ever before. Not just books, CDs and holiday trips are bought online, but all sort of other products and services that were unimaginable in the past. Today, more and more online shops get their customers from social networks like Facebook and mobile phones.

In the past going shopping was fun, something that you did with your friends or relatives. It was a social event. Today, Facebook and other social media networks are the driving force behind online shopping. Companies target potential customers and online communities. If they advertise their brands and products in the right way people will talk about them, and news spreads throughout the online world much quicker than in the real world.

Over 75% of all customers buy products after they have read reviews about them on the Internet. They ask their friends about quality and design of certain products. An American-based cosmetics company, for example, has asked female customers to exchange beauty tips via the Internet.

Companies also encourage online shoppers to play games that focus around their products. A British based firm lets users play a game with play money in which they can go and buy virtual versions of products and have their friends comment on them.

The new smartphone generation is likely to have an even greater impact on online shopping. While in a real store, customers often get reviews and price comparisons directly on their mobile. In many cases, when they see something they want to buy they leave the shop and buy online or go to a nearby place where they get it for a lower price. There are even apps which show you if there is a certain product on sale within a short distance of your location.

E-commerce is only at the beginning, with many more new shopping experiences to come.


· advertise = to tell the public about your products or services

· app = computer program that works on your mobile phone

· based = here: the country it comes from

· brand = type of product made by a company

· break into = here: to become a part of the market

· certain = special

· comparison = to find out how cheap products are

· costumer = person who buys a product

· distance = space

· e-commerce = buying and selling products and services over the Internet

· encourage = to talk someone into doing something

· exchange = swap, trade

· experience = the way you feel something

· female = woman

· firm = company

· focus = center

· force = power

· goods = products

· mobile phone = small telephone that you always have with you

· on sale = cheaper than normal

· online community = place on the Internet where people get together and share their experiences

· potential = possible; would-be

· quality = how good something is

· review = opinion on a product

· service = work or a job that you do for money

· smartphone = portable phone that has the functions of a computer

· social = with friends

· social media network = websites that allow people to get into contact with each other and share things

· spread = to move from one place to another

· target = aim at; try to get

· traditional =normal; something that has been around for a long time

· unimaginable = hardly possible

· via = over

· virtual = not real




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