Malware – What Is Malware?
Malware is an umbrella term for any software that threatens to damage or disrupt your computer system, and to steal data. It includes viruses, trojans, worms, ransomware, botnets, and more.
Viruses: Programs that replicate themselves, typically using a file as an entry point to spread across a network or a computer. Viruses can corrupt files, use emails to spread them, and erase data on hard drives.
Worms: Self-replicating viruses that exploit security vulnerabilities to automatically spread throughout computers and networks. They are typically silent and go unnoticed until replication reaches a scale that consumes significant resources or network bandwidth.
Trojans: Hidden in software or a legitimate app, Trojans install themselves on the target device, allowing hackers to remotely control the infected system and spy on activity. They can also be used to steal information or lock the infected device.
Botnets: These networks of infected computers are under the control of a single attacking party and can be used to carry out DDoS attacks, send spam, and steal data.
Cryptojacking: Cybercriminals use the computing power of infected computers to mine cryptocurrency (the process of verifying transactions on a blockchain network). It’s illegal for them to do so, and it can result in large sums of money being paid to them.
A common sign of malware infection is that your device starts running slower than usual, or that you notice a decrease in available storage space. These are signs that you may need to reinstall your operating system or restore your device’s files.