Several Kinds of PC Viruses

by Keith Williams

Viruses are little applications which are developed by programmers wanting to breach your computer security and cause a great deal of damage to your system. Once on your system these programs target your operating system and are able to self-replicate. The main modes of action tends to be to delete files, affect computer performance, cause a malfunctioning of system software, adversely affect your internet connections and even play havoc with your email.

There are a variety of different types computer viruses and it is important that as a computer user you have some knowledge of the different viruses that are around. The more knowledgeable you are, the more equipped you will be to be able to remove them from your computing environment. Fortunately, most viruses are easily dealt with by reputable anti-virus software.

When we consider the viruses which affect human health, we know that there are a number which can cause different disease. Each of these have their own characteristic symptoms whereby they can be recognized. Computer viruses are exactly the same. Each of the variants in circulation have a particular mode of action, which allow them to be identified and eradicated by anti-virus software. This might seem to complicate matters, but there are basically only 3 types of viruses that try to breach our computer security.

The most common form of computer virus in the Trojan horse. This type in able to infiltrate programs. Once the program is downloaded or installed, it is able to cause extensive damage to computer systems. Unfortunately if you do not update your virus definitions regularly, these threats can be missed by some anti-virus software. The problem with the Trojan horse if that you often allow them access to your system voluntary, without realizing the danger they pose.

Worms can act similarly to Trojans. Their main mode of action is targeted at networks and local wide area networks also called LANS. When these strike they tend to copy themselves onto a network location. Where as a Trojan needs to be installed with the software it has taken over, worms are active as soon as they copy themselves to a new location. Worms often use emails to spread as well. Fortunately most anti-virus software are able to deal with worms without any problems.

With the increase in the use of emails, this system has also become a prime target for certain type of viruses which append themselves to email attachments. These viruses need to be downloaded or installed to be activated. Once activated they are able to cause damage to computer systems. A good tool to install for protection is a reliable email monitor.

Viruses have become applications that all of us meet at some time during our computing experiences. These little nasties can become real pests and can seriously impact on our work. It is important that we familiarize ourselves with the variants that are doing their rounds. This will go a long way in helping the computer user to identify the different kinds of viruses and to implement systems to detect and get rid of them.

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