N/APosted on - 06/21/2011
I just want to know how virus, spyware and other Malware attack the computer. My brother always tells me that don’t just click links that I am not familiar with because it might have harmful contents that will make the computer at risk. So, I want to know all possible ways on how a virus can get on a computer, so that I can become aware of it.
Thanks in advance.
Do’s and don’ts to avoid malware and spyware
There are many possible ways that a virus, Trojans, spyware, and other Malware can get into the computer. Every time we use the computer especially when using the Internet a computer can get easily infected with malware.
The most common mistakes of a computer user are listed below:
Accepting or clicking every prompts on your screen while surfing the web without reading or understanding what it can do to your computer.
Updating a program without reading the content if it is really the update for the chosen program.
Opening an email that has an attachments without double checking the email address of the sender, because some e-mail address are fake imitating other addresses. This fake e-mail address contains links or attachments that can cause harm to your computer.
Not updating your operating system, especially the Microsoft Windows Updates. These updates contain securities that will make your computer protected against malware.
Downloading pirated software, these software are illegal that might contain viruses. Music or Videos that are free from the internet can also contain malware.
Not using an anti-virus or anti-spyware software. This will put your computer at risk because there are no software that will block malware.
Do’s and don’ts to avoid malware and spyware
Hi Danny Moray,
I hope this will answer your questions
Computer users are facing all sorts of security threats these days, computer viruses, computer worms, intruders, phishing, spyware. Almost every computer is challenged by more than one type of malicious attack each day. Knowing how these malicious programs spread and work can help you avoid potential damage to your computer.
How Malware attacks?
Computer viruses, worms, and Trojan horses are collectively known as Malware. They spread on the internet via email, instant messages and file sharing. Computer viruses need a host program to run whereas computer worms are self-contained. Both can replicate and spread in enormous rate over the internet.
Computer viruses usually cause damage to the boot sector, system BIOS, software or data files. Your system may fail to start, legitimate programs cannot run and data files are lost or corrupted.
Computer worms are usually designed to spread automatically via email program, causing major disruption of internet traffic. Some worms can create back door to allow authorized access to your computer.
Trojan horses usually do not replicate, they appear as some innocent programs, such as free games or free screensavers. This tricks you into downloading and running the Trojan horse. Trojan horses can open a back door, disable antivirus program and allow the download of other Malware.
How intruders attack?
Intruders are computer users who explore networks and computers, looking for vulnerabilities and infiltrate your system without your knowledge and permission. Some people argue that intruders may not have malicious intent, they are just curious about how computer network works. Nevertheless, unauthorized access to someone’s computer or network is not a moral act.
Malicious intruders gain access to your computer via different ways. For examples, they may use keystroke logger to record your every stroke, giving them enough information to infiltrate your system. They may alter your password by generating different combinations of numbers, letters and symbols. Intruders also search for unprotected network or enter your system via a back door installed previously by other Malware.
How Spyware Attack
Spyware is usually downloaded from web sites, email messages, instant messages or file sharing network. Some legitimate programs may install spyware on your computer when you accept the End User License Agreement. Spyware does exactly what its name suggests, it spies on you by collecting personal or sensitive information or tracking your browsing and shopping habit. Some spyware programs can change your web browser's home page or install additional components to your browser without your consent.
Spyware can result in identity theft, computer slowdown and slow internet access. Spyware should not be confused with adware. Adware is a program that displays advertisements, usually in the form of pop up ads. Strictly speaking, adware is not spyware if no personal information and browsing habit is collected. It is a way for some software developers to reimburse their development cost by providing freeware to their customers.
How fake email attacks?
Sending fake email is the electronic form of junk mail. Most fake messages are unsolicited advertising sent to a large number of recipients. Fake messages are not only annoying, some of them are dangerous. Some fake messages are used to deliver Trojan horses, viruses, spyware or links to offensive websites with inappropriate content.
A new form of sending a fake message is used to launch phishing attacks. Phishers, pretending to be legitimate companies such as banks, financial institutes, PayPal, send out fake messages to a large number of recipients. They usually use scare tactic and ask you to update your personal information (login ID and password, account information, etc.) immediately or your account will be suspended. Once you click on the link provided in the fake messages, you would land on Phish sites which look remarkably similar to the legitimate company web sites where the feathers will steal your personal information.
Now that you know how Malware, spyware, intruders and those who sends out fake messages attack your computer, you can be more proactive in your defense. Be careful of free download, free scan, email attachment, file sharing and don’t click on the hyperlink of fake messages. Read the End User agreement carefully when you install any software. Keep track of unusual inbound and outbound internet activities. If you do all of these and install an all-in-one internet security program (antivirus, anti-spyware, firewall, fake messages control), you should be pretty safe from these malicious attacks.