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A worm, for example, can exploit security vulnerabilities to spread itself automatically to other computers through networks.A Trojan horse (or simply ‘Trojan’) is a program that appears harmless but hides malicious functions.
Viruses may harm a computer system's performance or data.
Some are noticeable to the computer user, but many run in the background, unnoticed by the user. Safe Internet Use Some valuable tips on using the internet safely. Windows Updates Everything you need to know about operating system updates.
Downloading & File Sharing Simple measures needed to safeguard you when browsing and downloading. Spyware is a type of virus that is specifically designed to steal information about your activity on your computer.
Spyware writers have a number of different objectives, mainly fraudulent financial gain.
Spyware can perform a number of illicit functions, from creating pop up advertisements to stealing your bank login details by taking screen shots of the sites you visit and even logging the keys you type. Potentially, a virus could arrive on your computer in the form of a Trojan, it could replicate itself before moving on to another computer (a worm) and also be designed as a piece of spyware.
Viruses and spyware are types of malware, which also includes rootkits, dishonest adware and scareware.
The Risks Viruses and spyware can attack your computer via the following means: Internet security (antivirus/antispyware) software It is vital to keep your internet security software up to date in order to provide the most complete protection.Thousands of new viruses are detected every day, to say nothing of the variants of new and existing ones.Each has a set of characteristics or ‘signatures’ that enable internet security software manufacturers to detect them and produce suitable updates.Most internet security software automatically downloads these updates (sometimes referred to as ‘definitions’) on a regular basis, as long as you are online and have paid your annual subscription (for a paid-for product).This should ensure protection against even the latest virus threats.Internet security software scans for viruses in a number of different ways: Some internet security software also scans USB connected devices (eg memory sticks, external hard drives, MP3 players), as they are connecting. Internet security software will not protect you against: It is not effective if it is switched off or not updated with the latest virus signatures, and do bear in mind that no internet security software is infallible, so a new strain of malware from a fraudulent attachment or bogus website may still evade your software.