Can antivirus software 'cure' my sick computer?

Q. If my computer already has a virus, are the antivirus software programs that you recommend good, or is there another way to clean it up?—Charles Jeannel, Los Angeles

A. Some computer viruses can limit your ability to properly install and run protection software. If you want to try to eliminate existing bugs, we recommend downloading and running the free Malwarebytes Anti-Malware scanner. If necessary, you can download it on another computer, then transfer over the program using a USB flash drive.

For more on preventing viruses, check our security software buying guide and Ratings and find out how much security software you really need.

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This article also appeared in the July 2015 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.

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