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Virus Prevention

Virus Prevention

What is a computer virus?

A computer virus is a small software program that spreads from one computer to another and interferes with computer operation.  A computer virus might corrupt or delete data on a computer, use an email program to spread the virus to other computers, or even delete everything on the hard disk.

Computer viruses are frequently spread by attachments in email messages or by instant messaging messages.  Therefore, you must never open an email attachment unless you know who sent the message or you are expecting the email attachment.  Viruses can be disguised as attachments of funny images, greeting cards, or audio and video files.  Computer viruses also spread through downloads on the Internet.  They can be hidden in pirated software or in other fields or programs that you might download.

What is a worm?

A worm is computer code that spreads without user interaction. Most worms begin as email attachments that infect a computer when they're opened. The worm scans the infected computer for files, such as address books or temporary webpages, that contain email addresses. The worm uses the addresses to send infected email messages, and frequently mimics (or spoofs) the "From" addresses in later email messages so that those infected messages seem to be from someone you know. Worms then spread automatically through email messages, networks, or operating system vulnerabilities, frequently overwhelming those systems before the cause is known. Worms aren't always destructive to computers, but they usually cause computer and network performance and stability problems.

What is a trojan horse?

A trojan horse is a malicious software program that hides inside other programs. It enters a computer hidden inside a legitimate program, such as a screen saver. Then it puts code into the operating system that enables a hacker to access the infected computer. Trojan horses do not usually spread by themselves. They are spread by viruses, worms, or downloaded software.

What is spyware?

Spyware can install on your computer without your knowledge. These programs can change your computer's configuration or collect advertising data and personal information. Spyware can track Internet search habits and can also redirect your web browser to a different website than you intend to go to.

What is rogue security software?

A rogue security software program tries to make you think that your computer is infected by a virus and usually prompts you to download or buy a product that removes the virus. The names of these products frequently contain words like Antivirus, Shield, Security, Protection, or Fixer. This makes them sound legitimate. They frequently run right after you download them, or the next time that your computer starts. Rogue security software can prevent applications, such as Internet Explorer, from opening. Rogue security software might also display legitimate and important Windows files as infections. Typical error messages or pop-up messages might contain the following phrases:
-Warning!
-Your computer is infected!
-This computer is infected by spyware and adware.

Note If you receive a message in a popup dialog box that resembles this warning, press ALT + F4 on your keyboard to close the dialog box. Do not click anything inside the dialog box. If a warning, such as the one here, keeps appearing when you try to close the dialog box, it's a good indication that the message is malicious.
-Are you sure you want to navigate from this page?
-Your computer is infected! They can cause data lost and file corruption and need to be treated as soon as possible.
   Press CANCEL to prevent it. Return to System Security and download it to secure your PC.
   Press OK to Continue or Cancel to stay on the current page.

 If you see this kind of message, then don't download or buy the software.


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