What do viruses, trojans and malware actually do?

We all know viruses, trojans and malware are bad – but how are each of these different?

Malware means malicious software. Simply put, it is a term to describe all viruses, worms, spyware, trojans, and anything specifically designed to cause harm to your computer or steal information.

Much like in real life, a virus is a program that copies itself and infects a computer, spreading from one file to another, and then from one computer to another when the files are copied or shared.  Many viruses are designed to make your computer completely inoperable; however, there are some that simply delete or corrupt files.

That suspicious e-mail attachment or shady internet download can be what opens the door for a trojan horse. Trojan horses are applications that appear to be safe, but secretly have malicious code attached. In many cases, trojans will create a backdoor that allows your computer to be remotely controlled. When your computer is infected it can be used for many harmful purposes, such as sending out large amounts of spam. The major difference between a virus and trojan is that trojans don’t replicate themselves, they must be installed by an unsuspecting user.

Other common forms of malware are spyware, scareware and worms. If something on your computer appears suspicious or is acting unusual, give Tech Unlimited a call and we will help you determine if it is safe to proceed.

The best line of defense against attacks, is to have antivirus and malwares protection. Stop into our office to discuss the best options for you!

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