A computer virus is a software program that can replicate itself and spread from one computer to another. The term ‘virus’ is also commonly used to refer to other types of malware such as adware and spyware programs.
If your computer is running slowly, programs keep crashing or it keeps closing itself down, you could be infected. Our virus removal service can clean infected machines and install computer and network security measures.
Different type of computer malware:
- Virus: A computer virus is a computer program that can replicate itself and spread from one computer to another
- Computer worms: A computer worm can make use of vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows and Apple Mac computers to spread itself automatically to other computers through wireless and wired networks
- Trojan horses: Trojan horse program are a type of malware that appears harmless to the user but hides the ability to be malicious to the computer
- Rootkits: A rootkit is malicious software (malware) designed to hide itself and the existence of certain processes or programs from normal methods of detection
- Spyware: Spyware is a type of malware (malicious software) installed on computers that collects information about users without their knowledge. The presence of spyware is typically hidden from the user and can be difficult to detect
Worms and Trojan horses, like viruses, may harm a computer system’s data or performance. Some viruses and other malware have symptoms noticeable to the computer user, but many are surreptitious or simply do nothing to call attention to themselves. Some viruses do nothing beyond reproducing themselves.
Computers infected with malware almost always suffer some sort of damage. Typically this damage takes the form of slower computing speed, program crashes, malfunctions and repeated error messages. Your email account may be accessed by the malware, sending messages that you did not authorise, or simply fill your screen with pop-up ads while you surf the Internet. While most malware has a purpose such as theft or email spamming, some programs are designed with no purpose other than to do as much malicious damage to your computer as possible.
- Financial Theft: One of the main purposes of malware is to promote theft. It is estimated that billions of pounds a year are stolen due to malware providing access to personal and business financial records. Some styles of malware automatically transfer funds to other bank accounts. Others provide a backdoor into your system, allowing hackers unrestricted access to your finances over a long period of time. Malware created for theft is designed to be difficult to detect so that it can stay on your computer as long as possible. It will likely not give the obvious warning signs of those designed to disrupt your computer.
- Identity Theft: Many malware programs are designed to steal your personal information from your computer. Your name, driver’s license number, bank account and other sensitive information can all be used for identity theft. This theft is often financially motivated, but thieves may also obtain fake identification with your personal information. This identification can be used to apply for social security benefits or open bank accounts under a false name. The criminal can then disappear while a warrant for your arrest is issued for failing to appear in court.
- Loss of Productivity: Once malware has been detected, it must be removed. In a best-case scenario, this will only stop a single computer from being used while the malware is being cleaned. In a time of ever-increasing computer networks, however, it is much more frequent that entire computer servers must be shut down and rebuilt. All infected software must be removed and reinstalled. This can result in entire departments of a business being shut down for days, potentially losing millions of pounds for the company.
Every Microsoft Windows and Apple Mac computer should have good quality security software installed. There are free versions and well as paid versions.