August 3, 2010
Computer viruses have risen in the recent years and for some, the hassle of removing a particular nasty one is part headache and part frustration when it comes to protecting your computer. While there are several varieties of computer viruses, most of the solutions can be applied to nearly all. This article will give a brief description of the types of viruses you may encounter, the damage that can be done, and how you would go about getting rid of one.
A computer virus in the simplest of terms is a program that can move from computer to computer and has the capability of disrupting the daily operations of a computer. What makes viruses so intrusive and difficult is that there are a wide variety; there are worms, trojan horses, file infectors, boot infectors, etc. With the emergence of the Internet and the ability to go anywhere and be anywhere from the comfort of your home or location, the probability of becoming infected with a virus is very high.
Symptoms of a computer that may have a virus include slow performance, programs no longer working as they should or programs that were there are no longer (seemingly) installed, installed anti-virus programs no longer running or you’ve lost the ability to install any type of anti-virus program, etc.
It seems rather easy and simple to have a computer infected with a virus, but it is also easy and simple to get rid of one and making sure to lessen the chances of getting another. One important factor is making sure you have an anti-virus program. There are a variety, which can be free or for purchase; it is however the user’s choice and preference on which they feel will work for them. For free anti-virus, check out the popular Avast Home version or AVG; for paid, there is the popular McAfee and Trend Micro.
Do be careful in the selection of an anti-virus if you currently do not have one; one of the new types of virus are those that pretend to be actual anti-virus programs.
Things like Anti-Virus 2010 or PC Secure are NOT actual anti-virus programs; they are in fact rogue programs designed to take your money.
Once you have chosen an anti-virus program, make sure you run it immediately. If the program has a quick scan, run it to see if there are any infections on your computer. If it does find something, make sure you select any option that will delete the virus and its subprograms. When the scan is complete, run a full scan to make sure that any leftovers (or any that may have not shown in the quick scan) are caught. Make sure you also run any anti-spyware, anti-malware software that you have or obtain a copy of such a program. Many free programs include Search and Destroy, Malware Bytes, and Ad-Aware.
When it seems like everything has been caught, run any system updates, program updates to ensure that your system is current. Make sure that you are conscious of things that you receive through email or through downloads, as well as sites that you may browse.
Getting a computer virus is bad news for any computer, however by following the steps above, you will be able to remove any current viruses. The tip to make sure that you don’t get any other occurrences is to make sure that you keep your system and its programs current and up to date. Be wary of receiving emails from people you don’t know or attachments that look suspicious; be careful of downloads that seem sketchy; lastly, be careful of websites that you browse.