How can I protect myself from viruses distributed in Zip files?

Here are some steps you can take to help protect yourself from viruses, trojans, and other malware that may be distributed in Zip files:

System Protection and Updates

Know Your Source

Fake email address

Of course, these guidelines don't apply only to Zip files; they apply equally to any file type.

Disable Hidden File Name Extensions

All current versions of Windows are initially installed with an option called "Hide extensions for known file types" enabled. When this option is enabled, Windows will not display the file name extensions (.EXE, .DOC, etc.) for file types that it knows about.

This option is considered by many knowledgeable users to be dangerous, primarily because it can mislead you about the true nature of your files. For example, you might have a virus-infected file named "vacation.jpg.exe". If the hidden extension option is enabled, this file will appear on your desktop or in Windows Explorer as "vacation.jpg", leading you to think that it is a harmless vacation picture. In fact, it is an executable program, and opening it could infect your computer.

For information on how to disable hidden extensions, see How to configure Windows to show file extensions and hidden files.

If you have any questions about this information please email Technical Support.