Malware: Types and How do you recognise
- Is your system slowing down or hanging between sessions?
- Does your system have less storage space than it should?
- Do you see unfamiliar icons on your desktop?
- Are some of your files or programs missing for no reason?
- Is your system restarting without your permission?
- Are you getting pop up ads regularly?
- Do you see shortcut files?
- Are you unable to access your files in the system?
- Are you redirected to a different browser every time you try a site?
If the answer to these questions are yes then your system is attacked by Malware.
There are different types of malware and each of them attack differently from one another, but the main aim of all types of malware is to destroy your system and steal data. Let us look into the different types of malware:
- Virus: It is a piece of code to destroy the data in a system.
- Worms: It is a standalone malware that replicates itself from one computer to another.
- Trojans: It is a malicious code which disguises as real software but the intention is to completely take full control over our system or even destroy data.
- Ransomware: It infects the victim’s system files and demands a fee to restore access to the files/data.
- Spyware: It gathers sensitive information from the device and sent to external users or advertisers.
- Adware: It is a form of malware that shows ads on our system.They can be really inconvenient while surfing the internet. Eg, pop up ads or ads that can’t be closed.
Preventive measures we can take:
- Install anti virus software and update them regularly:
The antivirus software protects our systems and mobile from incoming threats, warns us and removes the issue. They come with critical security patches and remove outdated features.
This will help the antivirus software to find the issue and remove them.In case of not updating the software we run the risk of not identifying the problem and the system gets hacked or is attacked with viruses.
- Avoid using cracked software:
Cracked softwares will not be able to send us any security update patches thereby the system is prone to virus and malware easily compared to other systems with original software.
- Run regular scans:
Set your antivirus to run the scan on times whenever possible. It is better if we run a regular scan every week.
- Do not fall prey to phishing scams (links, attachments etc):
Be careful when you are about to click on any links. Check for a short URL or signs of a phishing link or mail. They can carry malicious malware. Scan documents and files before downloading. Avoid downloading materials from pirated sites.
- Be careful while using public wifi:
It is easy for a hacker to create a fake public wifi name and hack into anyone's system. Our private and sensitive information can be stolen. Also the hackers will be able plant malicious code in our mobile or system, thus taking full control of our devices and doing things as they like. It is always better to use your own internet to surf for information, stick with websites familiar to you and avoid transferring money or important documents using public wifi and turn off your automatic connectivity to wifi.