Malware: Learn How to Identify the Threat Quickly
But along with the efficiency ofIn a completely digital world, it is normal for all sensitive data of a person or company to circulate and be stored on computers or mobile devices. Whether through websites, folders or applications.
control and information disclosure, risks also came along. In different corners of the Internet, there are hidden threats that can steal personal data and cause a tremendous headache to any user.
Among these most common threats in everyday virtual life, we can highlight malware, short for malicious software.
What is Malware?
Malware is a type of computer program designed to infect a person’s device and harm them in many ways. It has various means of infecting computers and mobile devices, and it can also take many forms.
Spyware, viruses, worms, and Trojans are among these threats. Viruses are perhaps the most well-known type of malware and so are called because they are able to replicate various forms of themselves and spread across the network.
Each of them has a different “function”. Spyware, for example, copy and transmit personal information such as credit card numbers. Therefore, being well disguised in any corner of the Internet, the user must know how to identify them to protect themselves in every way.
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Malware can manifest itself in many different ways on devices. Paying attention to these signs is important to be able to neutralize any threat right away.
- Reduced operating system speed, when browsing the internet or using local applications;
- System shutdown, crash, or Blue Screen;
- System and antivirus update failures;
- Sudden appearance of new toolbars, extensions, or plugins;
- Mysterious loss of disk space;
- Change of browser homepage without permission or links that lead to unwanted destinations on the Internet;
- Excessive ads in pop-up windows on the screen of devices;
- The high usage of system resources and the computer’s fan working at a fast pace.
Nevertheless, even if everything is working normally on the devices, it does not mean everything is fine. A more powerful malware can hide on the computer and perform illegal activities without awakening any system alerts, managing to steal passwords or sensitive files.
How is The User Infected with Malware?
There are many ways in which a user can be tricked, infected by malware, and put their system and data at risk. The two most common ways it can access your system are on the Internet and through email.
Anything downloaded from the Internet to a device that does not have a quality anti-malware security application can pose risks to the user. The most common ways by which this can happen are:
- Browsing on compromised websites;
- Downloading infected music files;
- Installing new toolbars from an unknown provider;
- Clicking on game demos;
- Configuring software from a risky source;
- Opening suspicious email attachments.
But some can also hide in legitimate apps, especially when downloaded from websites or via messages, rather than through an app store.
Therefore, it is recommended to always use reliable sources of mobile apps or install apps from reputable providers, always downloading directly from the provider and never from other websites.
Even if a user installs something from a reputable source, failing to pay attention to requests for permission to install other program packages at the same time could end up installing unwanted software.
But there are much simpler ways to come across malware. Just visiting a malicious website, for example, or viewing a page and/or an infected ad, a malware download can take place.
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How to Protect Yourself from Malware?
In order to protect your computer or network from malware, two things are necessary: always being vigilant to everything that appears on the Internet and using protection tools. It is always good to be on the lookout for any messages or suspicious activity on the system.
Sending emails is one of the main paths where malware is found. Seemingly harmless and unsuspecting messages can be the perfect trick to deceive the user. It can be disguised as a message from a well-known company, banks, or even people you know in your family and friendship circles.
Emails that ask for passwords (mainly their confirmation) through links are quite common and dangerous. Thus, it is always good to be aware of everything you receive and analyze the situation carefully to find out if it is in fact true.
But personal surveillance alone is not enough. As already mentioned, malware can hide very well over the network and deceive any type of person, whether they are experienced in the matter or not.
When it comes to data security, especially for companies, it is essential to have reinforced security so that there is no risk of data leaks that could compromise an entire work.
An antivirus software package that is very efficient is what guarantees a technological defense capable of protecting computers and other electronic devices. It does a general system check to ensure it is malware-free.
It has a regular update that allows it to recognize the latest threats. It is also possible to warn of previously unknown malware threats based on their own technical resources.
With this anti-virus protection, it is also possible to detect suspicious websites, especially those that might trick the user into revealing passwords or account numbers. Effective protection also helps finances. They protect account information and provide password management.
However, this protection should be easy to use, simple to download and install. No protection is completely absolute, but using the right protection tools and having an awareness of what’s happening on the network ensures your data can be as protected as possible.