What is Malware?

The “mal” in malware stands for malicious and “ware” stands for, well software.  Malware is computer code that is intended to benefit the person in control of it by exploiting another person’s information, computer, or network in which it is operating on.  More often than not, the person whose computer malware is operating on has no idea of its presence. That is, of course if it hasn't taken over the computer, making most any task difficult to accomplish. Different types of malware include:

Computer Virus is a computer code that replicates itself into the code of programs operating on a computer without the computer users consent.

Computer Worm is a computer virus but more specifically it replicates its computer code onto other computers. Computer worms have been known to take over and link computers together to perform tasks such as sending a large number of email spam. Allowing updates on your computer helps prevent this type of malware significantly.

Scareware is software which attempts to deceive a computer user by using scare tactics that might persuade a person to purchase software in order to avoid a non-existing threat.

Ransomware is malware which takes over and locks down a computer until its user types in a key that typically requires purchasing.

Trojan Horse is mostly unlike a computer virus in terms of replicating itself. As you may be thinking, its name comes from Greek mythology, where Greek men infiltrated the city of Troy by hiding themselves in a large wooden horse presented as a gift. In the same way, when downloading free software a computer might be given additional programs which often slow down the computer and network.

Spyware as the name suggests, spies on a person’s computer, mostly through an internet browser.  Although, spyware is not limited to observing it may also report on and in many cases control your computer. An example would be when a search engine searches for a local flower shop, but the results show only a national flower delivery service.

Adware is software that generates advertisement for companies that have paid to be displayed on your computer screen.

Feel free to contact us for consultation regarding any questions or concerns you may have regarding malware. Feel free to comment on this blog as well.