is this a correct way to secure files on my external hard drive
Hi i am new here and i wanted to ask this question for a while. before i ask my question let me clarify my understanding of a virus and how it works please correct me if i am wrong.
a virus works by targeting and tampering with file or programs it has been specifically designed for e.g. if i download something of the internet and run the application and it contains a virus that say effects .exe files, it will be able to infect all the .exe files on my computer and wont tamper with anything else.
with that being said lets move on to the main question
i have an external hard drive where i keep all my important and frequent use data rather than on my own computer however multiple times in the past i have gotten it infected and had to re download and reset a lot of stuff. i mostly have programs and software stored on it. i am usually very careful with where i plug it in (other than my main pc i rarely plug it anywhere else) but mishaps can happen. As an extra layer of security i decided to first zip the files i want into a .rar format (e.g. lets say its an emulator and i have a .exe file, .txt file and a .png file in the folder) after i chnage it to a .rar format i change the extension to xyz123 so it becomes emulator.xyz123 and then i 7zip the file again and again change the extortion from .7zip to abc123 so the file now becomes emulator.abc123.
my questions are
1 how effective if any at all is this method of preventing a virus from infecting my files if i accidentally plug it into a pc which contains a virus.
2 if a virus is designed to effect .exe files ( which are the files i mostly have) will my files be safe
3 if a virus is designed to effect .rar or .7zip files are my files safe if i change the extension because by my understanding if the virus cant identify the file type its designed to infect it wont infect the file,
4 since i will be storing files on my external hard drive for long-term, will this method recommended for storage? one of my friends told me that zip or rar files when left for a long time become corrupt and you wont be able to unzip them. i thought this was highly unlikely but it keeps resurfacing at the back of my head,
5 i also heard that if parts of sectors of my eternal hard drive go bad it will damage the zip or rar file and i wont be able to unzip it.
6 if this method isn’t effective or viable what would you recommend for me to do.
a comprehensive answer would be greatly appreciated.