The Reasons Why Antivirus Software is Critical for Safety and Security
The Main Ways a Computer Virus Operates
The term "virus" when referring to a computer infection is quite appropriate. Much like a biological organism, a virus surreptitiously enters its host, modifies certain coding within and thereafter destroys or steals various targeted or random data.
One of the most common ways a virus can enter into a system is through third-party software that is downloaded. The virus will be contained within the coding itself. This spyware or malware can collect user data, corrupt files and expose a computer to more such attacks.
Another method frequently employed is for a pop-up window to claim that a computer is already infected. It will direct the user to immediately run a virus protection check. In fact, this "check" can contain a virus itself.
Email servers can also be hacked; thus allowing a program to obtain usernames and passwords for specific accounts. This account will then message all other recipients; encouraging them to click on a hyperlink embedded within the email. This will spread the virus further and can also compromise any personal data within an account.
Finally, blind links to unintended websites will often contain coding that can install a virus directly on a computer. Often times, the user may not even be aware that such a program has been installed until an antivirus removal tool is run.
Once again, some of the main ways a virus can enter into a computer or network are:
- The downloading of third-party software.
- A false report of an infection.
- Email phishing and scams.
- Blind links to an infected website.
How to Safely Remove a Virus on a System and Prevent Recurrences
Virus removal first involves discovering that one exists. This can be performed through a virus scan. No-obligation items are available via the internet and require no download, however they may not detect the latest threats. For this reason, it is highly recommended that one purchases antivirus programs such as those supplied by Norton Antivirus or AVG. Other popular anti-virus software includes Microsoft Security Essentials and Spybot. Before committing to buy the product, many of these software companies allow you to download a free trial version of their software. This allows you to better compare the different services and features of each anti-virus program in order the ascertain which one best suits your needs.
After such a virus protection program is installed, it should be allowed to complete a full scan of all files on one's hard drive. This may take some time, but it will make certain that any malicious programs are detected and subsequently extricated. This anti virus software should be allowed to perform this task at least once a month or when prompted by the manufacturer.
While these programs are indeed robust in their nature, the user should also clear the cookies, the cache and all temporarily stored files on their computer once every few weeks. Spyware and viruses may very well be masked within this temporary data. Deleting it may help prevent an infection and it will certainly free up space on a hard drive.
To review, the primary ways to remove a virus and help prevent against subsequent infections are:
- Perform a free virus scan.
- Notwithstanding this scan, purchase a reputable computer protection program such as Norton Antivirus.
- Perform an in-depth analysis of the entire system.
- Clear all cookies, temporary internet files and the browser's cache.