Let us start by first explaining the term “Malware”. Malware, short for Malicious Software, is the general term used to mean a variety of forms of hostile, intrusive, or annoying software or program code.
Malware includes viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware, adware scareware, crimeware and root kits.
The term computer virus is used for a program that has infected software and when this software is run, it causes the virus to spread to other software. Viruses may also contain an additional malicious action that affects your computer, called a “payload”.
In terms of computer malware, a payload is the malicious harmful action that the malware will perform on your computer.
A virus on its own is just a method of spreading, it’s the payload within it that carries out the malicious action which can include deleting your files, giving hackers access to your computer, or load Rogue Security Software.
A program that actively transmits itself over a network to infect other computers without the need for user input. It too may carry a payload
Is any program that invites the user to run it, concealing a harmful payload. It can be disguised as something innocuous or desirable, users may be tempted to install it without knowing what it does
A backdoor is a method of bypassing normal authentication procedures. Once a system has been compromised by a virus, worm or Trojan, one or more backdoors may be installed in order to allow easier access in the future. Hackers typically use backdoors to give them full access to a computer.
Rogue Security Software
Is a form of malware that misleads users into paying for the fake or simulated removal of malware, or that installs other malware. Rogue security software, in recent years, has become a growing and serious security threat in desktop computing.
Why do people create Malware and Viruses?
- To take control of a computer and use it for specific tasks such as sending spam anonymously or to use multiple computer to send a Denial of Service attack against corporations taking down their computer systems as seen recently with the credit card companies.
- Make money by tricking people into thinking you’re purchasing a useful utlity such as an Anti-virus. Very common these days.
- Steal sensitive information such as credit card numbers and passwords, or personal details for identity theft.
- To prove they can do it. Taking down microsoft is a big deal to a programmer, and Microsoft os the biggest target so it is attacked constantly, sometimes just to prove a point.
How to protect yourself against viruses and other malware?
Your biggest weapon against Viruses is common sense. Do not open random emails, avoid visiting irreputable websites or websites that deal with piracy, illegal downloads, adult content and gambling. for a full guide please visit our 10 Step Guide to Protect Against Viruses.