How do viruses gain access to computers?
A virus need to be executed by a computer to activate itself. For example if a virus has been attached to a movie or music file the computer needs to open these files to get the movie or music to play. This then activates the virus to start working on your computer. One of the most common sources of current viruses are from illegal downloading (Lime Wire, U Torrent, etc) of any type of files. For example you could be downloading a movie which in addition to the video carries a virus that, when played, starts to infect.
Viruses can also come in files attached to emails from friends. Bear in mind your friend might not have sent it but the virus might have infected your friend's email account and is sending the virus out to everyone on their contact list causing a chain effect if opened. If you think an email looks suspicious make sure to erase it immediately . You will seldom get infected by reading an email but if the suspicious email contains any attachments, do not open them without first scanning them with a virus scanner. If in doubt, delete the email.
How do I prevent from getting a virus?
The best way to keep your computer protected from viruses is keep your anti-virus software up to date and to scan any files that may look suspicious. Instead of downloading illegal music or movies buy it from a trusted site such as iTunes or rent them from a video store. In the end it will cost you more to get rid of the virus rather than saving a few euro on the price of a CD or DVD. Also only visit trusted sites and never use sites that you think my cause harm to your computer.
Windows is updated weekly with security updates that fix recently identified vulnerabilities. It is very important that you keep your PC properly updated with security patches.
What type of viruses are there?
You might hear a lot of names of viruses but what are they and what is their specific job?
Trojans or Trojan Horses
Trojan horses are designed to give “Hackers” a backdoor to remotely access your computer. They infect your computer and . A Hacker can use a port scanner to search the network for a computer infected with a Trojan and gain access without the users permission.
Worms also replicate themselves through your system. It sends copies of itself to other computers on your network rather than damaging files and programs like some other viruses. It can flood your network putting a lot of stress it. They generally find holes in your operating system so it is a good idea to always install the newest updates provided by your vendor.
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