Modern computer environment security is highly debatable. Levels of anti-malware software development have reached very and very high milestones. If your antivirus software is set properly, you can forget about the possibility of virus injection, regardless of the file sources or your own carelessness. However, there is still a huge amount of users who don’t use any antivirus software or use outdated antimalware tools. This category of computer users is the main target of virus creators.
Most popular types of viruses
First of all, let’s figure out the virus definition. The virus is a specific kind of harmful tool, but most users typically describe infections or viruses. In fact, a virus is a kind of program that upon execution replicates itself by changing other programs as well as adding its own code. When the duplication occurs, the impacted areas become “infected” with the virus.
Viruses are becoming significantly varied in kinds. From basic risks that are safe and created to mock individuals for their poor cyber-security or increase the ego of some teen hacker, they have actually become the single reason there are a lot of information leakages as well as breaches occurring to gots. Not just this, but cyber threats have actually become so serious, that one certain virus can have the possibility to interfere with major facilities of the government and even atomic energy facilities. And now with the variety of tools raising on the market, it is essential to understand how the different types of viruses work and also to learn the way to manually recognize the sort of threat you are at risk from.
Adware and Redirects (a.k.a. Browser Hijackers)
Adware and browser redirects are like cousins, and the main reason for such classification is the signs of their activity. Both adware and browser hijackers show you a lot of annoying and distracting advertisements. The developers of these viruses, who assigned the contract for showing these ads, will get the money for every view. But the methods of their activity are different.
Adware is rather a separate program, which, however, cannot be found in the Programs and Features section. These programs are usually distributed with different cracked software, abandonware, or free applications. After the installation, you will see an enormous amount of different advertisements, which are far away from your typical search queries. This virus can be the reason for performance declining, especially if you have weak PC configuration.
Redirects, or browser hijackers, are distributed as separate programs. They are described as “toolbox for your browser” or “antivirus add-on to improve your browser safety”. Whatever they are promising in the promotions you see, their real functionality is completely different, and rather malicious, then useful. Such viruses can change your browser settings, such as search engine, privacy settings, disable your downloaded files security checks, or allow the disabled-by-default access to untrusted websites. The hijacker can also redirect your search queries to the doorway websites, full of ads and dubious links.
Ransomware is one of the most dangerous types of computer virus. This program injects your PC and encrypts all your files – documents, photos, Excel tables, videos, and music. Because of the extremely complicated encryption mechanism – AES-256 or even RSA-2048 – it is impossible to decrypt your files using brute force or other “classic” methods. There are 2^256 (or even 2^2048) possible key variants. To get your files back, ransomware virus distributors offer you to pay the sum in Bitcoin, about 1000$. Nowadays, this threat has become more and more active, that’s why we concentrate a lot of attention on this viruses removal and file decryption.
Trojan viruses are called so because of their behavior – similar to the trojan horse from the famous legend. A trojan is a shell program, which hides under the guise of a useful app. Such apps can have no useful functions, as well as be quite usable. However, this virus is used to find any breaches in your PC safety, and then download a big pack of other viruses from the remote server. Instead of searching for vulnerabilities, the trojan virus can create them, for example, by changing your registry. And nobody can be sure which malicious programs will be downloaded and installed through such vulnerabilities. It can be a huge pack of different adware, as well as backdoors, stealers, remote administration tools, or even ransomware.
The separate category of trojan viruses are banking trojans. These malicious programs inject the stealing program to your PC/mobile device, in order to corrupt your credit card data, online-banking passwords, and other crucial information.
Backdoor is a type of virus which can be injected through the vulnerabilities created (or found) by trojan virus, or as a part of different software, being added to this software occasionally or deliberately. Backdoors can provide access to the files on the infected PC, as well as remote control to the whole computer. Such viruses are carrying an enormous hazard for the corporations which have a lot of internal data that is not supposed to be published at all.
Spyware is rather a potentially unwanted program, than a virus. This type of malware is usually distributed as “trackers” for your spouse, children, parents, etc., however, besides streaming the location, it also gathers information about you and your family. This information may be sold in the future to absolutely random organizations. Another unwanted action that can be performed by the spyware virus is translating the false location. It can lead to quarrels in your family.