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My computer had a virus, what is that?

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My computer had a virus, what is that?

What are viruses?
A computer virus is a program that spreads by first infecting files or the system areas of a computer or network router's hard drive and then making copies of itself. Some viruses are harmless, others may damage data files, and some may destroy files. Viruses used to be spread when people shared floppy disks and other portable media, now viruses are primarily spread through email messages.

Unlike worms, viruses often require some sort of user action (opening an email attachment or visiting a malicious web page) to spread.

What is a worm?
A worm is a type of virus that can spread without human interaction. Worms often spread from computer to computer and take up valuable memory and network bandwidth, which can cause a computer to stop responding. Worms can also allow attackers to gain access to your computer remotely.

What is a Trojan horse?
A Trojan horse is a computer program that is transporting a virus or other potentially damaging program. A Trojan horse can be a program that purports to do one action when, in fact, it is performing a malicious action behind the scene on your computer. Trojan horses can be included in software that you download for free or as attachments in email messages. They also can be set to activate at a later date.  Making it nearly impossible to track where it came from.

Can I get a virus by reading my email messages?
Most viruses, Trojan horses, and worms are activated when you open an attachment or click a link contained in an email message. If your email client allows scripting, then it is possible to get a virus by simply opening a message. It's best to limit what HTML is available in your email messages. The safest way to view email messages is in plain text.

How to avoid getting a virus infection via email?
Most e-mail viruses come from opening and running unknown email attachments. Never open anything that is attached to an email message unless you know the contents of the file. If you receive an attachment from a familiar email address, but were not expecting anything, you should contact the sender before opening the attachment. If you receive a message with an attachment and you do not recognize the sender, you should delete the message.

Some handy tips:

        Install anti-virus software from a reputable vendor. Update it and use it regularly.

Use a virus scan before you open any new programs or files that may contain executable code. This includes packaged software that you buy from the store as well as any program you might download from the Internet.

If you are a member of an online community or chat room, be very careful about accepting files or clicking links that you find or that people send you within the community.

Make sure you back up your data (documents, bookmark files, important email messages, etc.) on disc so that in the event of a virus infection, you do not lose valuable work.

 

As always, call us or chat with us at www.WickedEasyFix.com.

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