How to prevent and remove viruses and malware?
What is a computer virus?
A computer virus is a piece of code, which is capable of copying itself and typically has a detrimental effect, such as corrupting the system or destroying data. A virus operates by inserting or attaching itself to a legitimate program or document that supports macros to execute its code. In the process, a circus has the potential to cause unexpected or damaging effects, such as harming the system software by corrupting or destroying data.
What is a worm?
It is a computer code that spreads without user interaction. The worm looks for files, like address books or email addresses. Then it uses those addresses to send infected messages further on by mimicking the email it came from, so users think they got an email from someone they know. They very rarely are destructive to computers, but usually, cause computer and network performance and stability problems.
What is a Trojan horse?
A Trojan horse is a malicious software program that hides inside other problems. Trojan horses find their way into computers hidden inside a legitimate program, like for example screen saver. It then puts a code in the computer, which allows a hacker to access the computer or laptop. They don’t spread by themselves, but with the help of viruses, worms or like mentioned above the downloaded software.
What is spyware?
Spyware usually installs on your computer without you even knowing and is capable of changing the configuration of the computer or collect advertising data and personal information. It can redirect you to advertising sites, distasteful or compromised sites and even sending you unwanted and annoying pop-up ads. Very often changes made by the spyware are very hard to undo.
Now that we have some basics on what malware is and its types, how do you remove it?
Removing any malware can be a difficult task, but not impossible. The best way is to use malicious software removal tools. Some of the viruses and malware can reinstall itself after the first one was detected and removed. One way to prevent it is by keeping your computer up to date and using malicious software removal tools, which eventually will permanently remove all the unwanted programs. Microsoft also offers guidance and help to fight the malware on your device.
- The first and most obvious way is to install anti-virus/malware software.
- Keep the anti-virus program up to date.
- Regularly scan your device with anti-virus software.
- The operating system such as Windows should also be kept up to date at all times.
- Make sure your network (Wi-Fi) requires a password to keep it safe.
- Don’t use open unsecured Wi-Fis, which are very likely to infect your device as they are not protected by anyone.
- Always back-up your files.
- Use strong passwords.
Other types of malware in a nutshell:
- Ransomware, which is designed to encrypt the data and cybercriminals then demand a ransom payment in exchange for the system’s data.
- Rootkit gives administrator-level access to the system.
- Adware collects data and provides you with appropriate advertisements.
- Fileless malware lives in the memory if the computer, which makes it a lot harder to detect it as it doesn’t exist in a file on the hard drive.