Malware also known as malicious software are developed by cyber criminals to damage your computer or steal valuable details. The best way to remain protected is to know what are the different types of malware and what damage can they cause to your PC.
Like the name explains, spyware is a common types of malware which monitors the activities performed by a computer user on his or her PC. The main intention of a spyware is to collect the private information of the computer user. Spyware may be accidentally downloaded by users while downloading any free software from the internet. Apart from transmitting private information, spyware can also change your computer settings and throw pop up ads.
Trojan horse is a malware which appears to be a legitimate file. Once it infects a PC, it has the ability to grant remote access to the user’s computer. Trojan not only compromises security but it can also make your PC slow and non-functional.
A computer virus is a quite popular term, which every PC users might have come across. A virus can enter your PC via an external hard drive or while downloading any software or email attachment. Computer virus destroys data and can use your PC to circulate spams.
A type of virus, worms can enter your system through an email attachment. It’s a self-replicating virus and can spread very quickly via a computer network.
Scareware, as the name suggests, scares PC users that their computer is infected by hundreds of virus, which needs immediate purchase of any particular software. The warning can be in the form of a pop-up, clicking on which the user will land on a website where he or she will be prompted to buy the unnecessary software.
Adware targets internet users showing them different types of irrelevant ads. In general, no personal data is stolen by an adware but it can slow down your PC to a great extent. Due to the huge amount of ads appearing in the form of pop ups, you will find it very difficult to perform the day-to-day activities on your PC. Hence, it’s important to protect yourself against Adware.
An internet Bot is a software which is programmed to run automated tasks that are usually repetitive in nature. Malicious Bots are used to execute automated attacks on computer networks such as DDoS attacks.
A rootkit software is designed to get access to a computer system and can be installed automatically or after the hacker gets root access. With full control over a computer system, rootkits can alter and destroy data present on the system. Rootkits are usually difficult to detect and remove.
This type of software is designed to spy the activities of a computer user. From collecting a user’s keystroke activities to changing software settings on PC, a spyware can perform without the user’s knowledge.
The most dangerous of all, Ransomware is a type of malware which encrypts the files stored on the target’s computer and demands a fee or ransom to decrypt the same. The encryption is extremely strong and in most cases, it cannot be unlocked without paying the ransom. The threat of ransomware is increasing day by day and hence a strong defense system needs to be developed including healthy browsing habits.
Apart from the 8 mentioned malware, there are other types of techniques used by cyber crooks. A popular one is ‘Phishing’, which is a way to fool internet users and steal their financial details. Fake websites such as banking, online shopping etc. are set up by cyber criminals and users are lured to enter their credit card and other financial details. These websites resembles the actual sites so it’s very difficult to detect.
Apart from gaining sufficient knowledge about types of malware and their effects, it’s also important to use an antivirus software.