Computer viruses and the need for virus removal continues to disrupt the business day and rob people of their valuable time and money. Firewalls and antivirus alone can't protect users from viruses and the growing intrusions that are increasing on a daily basis.. It is the user's responsibility to be "security conscience" and protect their business or personal data from these costly intrusions whenever possible. There is a false sense of security among the population regarding the use of firewalls and system security. We wish that hardware solutions were the only defense necessary in today's tech world but unfortunately nothing can completely replace the value of a security-minded user. In general, a stand alone firewall cannot protect against a data driven attack, in which something is mailed or copied to an internal host where it is then executed. A stronger solution is now required to help combat the many malicious ways in which the cyber criminals and random viruses are infecting even the most conservative users.
Organizations that are concerned about security breaches via malicious software and viruses should invest in the proper security solution to control and quarantine these intrusions and virus infections. Blanketing your network with virus scanning software is no longer the answer when it comes to protection against viruses via phones, tablets, iPads, laptops, shared files, Internet use or hackers. Trying to block viruses at the firewall will only protect against viruses from the Internet-and the vast majority of viruses are transmitted via attachments in emails or websites. This is why the Ransomware infections are so out of control.
A virus or worm is a malicious computer program that can spread across computers and networks by making copies of itself, usually without the user’s knowledge.
Depending on the virus, they can control and irritating pop-up messages, hijack/steal your data, or allow other users access to your computer all together.
How does a virus work?
A virus has to be run before it can infect your computer, and they have ways of making sure this can happen. They can attach to other programs or hide in code that is run automatically when you open certain types of files.
How do I get a virus on my system?
Viruses can come from an infected file in an email attachment, a download coming from the internet, or on a disk. As soon as any of these types of files are launched, the virus code will activate and run. Once it can run, it has the ability to copy to other files or disks, and make changes on your computer. Many times a virus will come from a software installation in which a random window can pop up and accidentally get clicked on, or when viewing media online. Visiting adult websites will typically result in a virus infection as well.
A computer virus is a computer program that can copy itself and infect a computer. The term "virus" is also commonly but erroneously used to refer to other types of malware, including but not limited to adware and spyware programs that do not have the reproductive ability. A true virus can spread from one computer to another (in some form of executable code) when its host is taken to the target computer; for instance because a user sent it over a network or the Internet, or carried it on a removable medium such as a CD, DVD, or USB drive.
A computer worm is a self-replicating malware computer program, which uses a computer network to send copies of itself to other nodes (computers on the network) and it may do so without any user intervention. This is due to security shortcomings on the target computer. Unlike a computer virus, it does not need to attach itself to an existing program. Worms almost always cause at least some harm to the network, even if only by consuming bandwidth, whereas viruses almost always corrupt or modify files on a targeted computer.
A Trojan horse, or Trojan, is a destructive program that masquerades as an application. The software initially appears to perform a desirable function for the user prior to installation and/or execution, but (perhaps in addition to the expected function) steals information or harms the system. Unlike viruses or worms, Trojan horses do not replicate themselves, but they can be just as destructive.
A rootkit is software that enables continued privileged access to a computer while actively hiding its presence from administrators by subverting standard operating system functionality or other applications. The term rootkit is a concatenation of "root" (the traditional name of the privileged account on Unix operating systems) and the word "kit" (which refers to the software components that implement the tool). The term "rootkit" has negative connotations through its association with malware.
Typically, an attacker installs a rootkit on a computer after first obtaining root-level access, either by exploiting a known vulnerability or by obtaining a password (either by cracking the encryption, or through social engineering). Once a rootkit is installed, it allows an attacker to mask the ongoing intrusion and maintain privileged access to the computer by circumventing normal authentication and authorization mechanisms. Although rootkits can serve a variety of ends, they have gained notoriety primarily as malware, hiding applications that appropriate computing resources or steal passwords without the knowledge of administrators and users of affected systems. Rootkits can target firmware, a hypervisor, the kernel, or most commonly user-mode applications.
Rootkit detection is difficult because a rootkit may be able to subvert the software that is intended to find it. Detection methods include using an alternate, trusted operating system; behavioral-based methods; signature scanning; difference scanning; and memory dump analysis. Removal can be complicated or practically impossible, especially in cases where the rootkit resides in the kernel; reinstallation of the operating system may be the only available solution to the problem.
Maleware, short for malicious software, consists of programming (code, scripts, active content, and other software) designed to disrupt or deny operation, gather information that leads to loss of privacy or exploitation, gain unauthorized access to system resources, and other abusive behavior. The expression is a general term used by computer professionals to mean a variety of forms of hostile, intrusive, or annoying software or program code
Adware, or advertising-supported software, is any software package which automatically plays, displays, or downloads advertisements to a computer. These advertisements can be in the form of a pop-up. They may also be in the user interface of the software or on a screen presented to the user during the installation process. The object of the Adware is to generate revenue for its author. Adware, by itself, is harmless; however, some adware may come with integrated spyware such as keyloggers and other privacy-invasive software.
Scareware comprises several classes of scam software with malicious payloads, or of limited or no benefit, that are sold to consumers via certain unethical marketing practices. The selling approach uses social engineering to cause shock, anxiety, or the perception of a threat, generally directed at an unsuspecting user. Some forms of spyware and adware also use scareware tactics.
A tactic frequently used by criminals involves convincing users that a virus has infected their computer, then suggesting that they download (and pay for) fake antivirus software to remove it. Usually the virus is entirely fictional and the software is non-functional or malware itself. According to the Anti-Phishing Working Group, the number of scareware packages in circulation rose from 2,850 to 9,287 in the second half of 2008. In the first half of 2009, the APWG identified a 585% increase in scareware programs.
Crimeware is a class of malware designed specifically to automate cybercrime. The term was coined by Peter Cassidy, Secretary General of the Anti-Phishing Working Group to distinguish it from other kinds of malevolent programs.
Crimeware (as distinct from spyware, adware, and malware) is designed (through social engineering or technical stealth) to perpetrate identity theft in order to access a computer user's online accounts at financial services companies and online retailers for the purpose of taking funds from those accounts or completing unauthorized transactions that enrich the thief controlling the crimeware. Crimeware also often has the intent to export confidential or sensitive information from a network for financial exploitation. Crimeware represents a growing problem in network security as many malicious code threats seek to pilfer confidential information. Variants of Crimeware include Ransomware and Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS).
Just like a real virus like the flu, a computer virus is always evolving to breach security updates, and bi-passing old versions of anti-virus.
There are many low maintenance solutions that can prevent viruses infections on your computer. Here are a few helpful tips to keep your system protected.
The 10 Commandments to keep your computer healthy!
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