Sometimes malware stays quiet on your computer until the attacker wants to activate it. Generally, the attacker will wait until he has infected a few hundred thousand computers, and then he essentially has enlisted your computer in an army of other infected computers without you even being aware!
Your sympoms in these cases will include a very slow running computer and various program errors or pop-up messages.
You may ask yourself, “Why would anyone want to do that?” Well if you are a bad guy triggering a an army of computers to visit a single website multiple times per second he can easily bring down entire websites just from the sheer number of connections. If you are a true “bad guy” this cause and effect is exactly what you desire.
Then there is the malware that appears to be an antivirus that will (for a small fee) gladly remove all of the nasty programs that it itself installed. This one is very popular and I have been asked to clean computers because of this hundreds of times. This is important – so pay attention. Never ever pay anything when prompted by one of these malware programs. That’s because once you pay, they will ask for more, and more and more to squeeze as much money as possible out of you with no intention of ever fixing the problem!
The problem with most malware is that the moment it runs on your computer, it will disable almost all of your protection which makes identifying it incredibly difficult.
So here are 4 easy tips for identifying malware on your computer:
- If a message pops up on tour screen asking for personal information – do not provide it.
- If your computr has been infected bya computer virus, shut it down without delay.
- Do not troubleshoot the problem with the infected computer.
- If you are unable to remove the virus yourself, contact a technology professional.