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Online Safety


File-Sharing Risks

Peer-to-peer (P2P) or file-sharing programs allow you to share your files with others on the Internet. However you should stop and think before downloading files through file-sharing networks. Some of the risks associated with using file-sharing programs include spreading viruses and malignant code (spyware) that can damage your computer, or track your activities and share them. For this reason, it is a good idea to use and update the anti-virus software on your computer.

File sharing may also allow you to access inappropriate (often sexually explicit) audio and video clips, and video libraries. Another risk is that you may be downloading or sharing copyrighted content.  Much of the film, music, and software on file-sharing networks is protected by copyright. If you don’t have the copyright owner’s permission to use it, you can be in serious legal trouble.