Common Types of Malware

August 20, 2015 | By James Raymond
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Types of malware

When it comes to computer threats, we tend to think of the word “virus” as an all-inclusive term, but in reality, a virus is just one type of malware. There are many varities.

Cyber criminals are always developing stealthy ways to enhance and spread their techniques, often with the goal of stealing people’s identities or money.

Viruses

A virus is a malicious computer code that, once executed, infects normal computer software. Each time infected software is activated, the virus then attempts to reproduce and infect more and more applications.

Only human activity gives life to viruses on a computer, and users invite these infections through various ways. They may download an infected software or program, click a malicious link, or run an application on a USB drive. In some cases, viruses seek to exploit the security flaws that exist in software programs and operating systems. A virus can steal private data and cause harm to the infected PC.

To protect yourself from viruses, do not download software from unknown and untrusted sources. When you do download software or applications, be sure to download from manufacturer websites. Do not use unknown USB drives. Do not open suspicious emails. Use robust antivirus software which scans and finds these kinds of malicious threats.

Worms

Computer worms are more dangerous than viruses, as they spread infections across a network. They can achieve this by sending emails to contacts saved in your contact list. Once your contact opens the email, they also become infected. Unlike viruses, a worm doesn’t need to be attached to an existing program. Where viruses typically corrupt or modify files on a computer, worms harm an entire network—even if it only consumes the processing power.

CyberCriminals created worms for the same reason as viruses: they want to control your computer to access sensitive information, or they simply want to create havoc.

You can stay safe and secure from computer worms by upgrading your software to remove vulnerabilities, and Internet security software can help protect you from new threats.

Rootkits

A rootkit is a collection of computer software designed to hide itself even after it infects your computer, and it allows hackers to upload malware whenever required. Rootkits replicate themselves over the Internet and infect computers that run older operating system versions. Sometimes, a rootkit attaches itself along with legitimate software, which tricks users into installing malware on their systems.

To prevent a rootkit from infecting you, don’t forget to always update your operating system and also ensure that your other software is updated with the latest software patches. Do not download any software from third party websites, and remember to keep your security software up to date.

Spyware

This malware does exactly what it says: after gaining access to your system, it spies on your activities. It sends the information about your activity straight to the CyberCriminal who orchestrated the attack. Spyware can get installed on your system when you install free software or other applications. A keylogger is a type of spyware that records all your activities, from passwords to other private details. The infection can slow down your computer, and will sometimes redirect your web browser to a malicious website. When installing any software, check if there is an option to deselect the additional software from being installed, and as you’ve learned already, be sure to run security software with the latest updates.

How Comodo Antivirus prevents malware

Comodo Free Antivirus combines all the best patented virus protection technologies in one comprehensive package to ensure virus removal and defy any other malware attack. Its cutting edge technology defends against viruses, adware, spyware, computer worms, rootkits and more:

  • Auto Sandbox Technology
  • Defense Plus –
  • Default Deny Protection
  • Cloud Based Protection

Comodo protects you against threats known and unknown.

Internet security


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