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Understanding Program Infectors

There is a lot of infection malware circulating throughout the internet, all of which can easily find its way to you.  The internet has become an open platform for malicious individuals distributing spam emails carrying scams, self replicating network worms and Trojans capable of launching intrusive spyware.  All of these harmful programs are often associated with a virus, one of the greatest threats posed to your computer. 

With all of the nasty infections cluttering cyberspace, it is important to build a virtual fortress around your computer to keep the intruders away.  A great place to start is learning more about the most common viruses and how they function. 

Viruses are classified in many different ways and have spawned several variants.  Three major types include boot infectors, system infectors and general program infectors.  Boot infectors are typically installed into the boot sector of a floppy disk or hard drive.  Popular examples of this infection are the Alameda virus and the Pakistani Brain Virus.  System infectors spread by attaching to a device driver or module of the operating system.  An example would be the Lehigh virus which uses components from another host to infect areas of an operating system. 

Program infectors make up the largest classification of viruses.  It has the ability to attach itself to any kind of application software, taking complete control when the infected program is run.  From there, it roams the system in search of other host programs, whether they're on the hard drive or a floppy disk.  After finding victims, the infection spreads further, giving control back to the original program.  It many instances, a user may have no indication of a virus as programs may function normally for sometime.  Over time, the applications will endure complication or corrupt the system due to multiple infections. 

Considering the numerous variations, program infectors stand to cause major problems for home computer users and large networks alike.  These viruses replicate themselves at a fast rate, claiming loads of memory and bogging down your machine.  One of the biggest concerns involves having all of your important files overwritten and replaced with malicious codes.  This could be data pertaining to online confirmations, purchase details or payroll information.  Losing these files to a virus could spell disaster for several people.  Program infectors can completely shut down your favorite applications and render your devices useless.   

Methods of Prevention

With the prevalence of malicious viruses we endure in the internet-era, many users have taken extreme measures to prevent these threats from attacking their systems.  Here are a few tips to keep you safe program infectors and several other viruses:

- make backup copies of all data files and programs on a regular basis

- use extreme caution when downloading public-domain software and always scan the program for viruses

- always boot an operating system from a write-protected disk

- remain aware of unusual activity in regard to programs or the system itself

Trusted Security Software

In addition to the basic security procedures, you can keep the viruses at bay with a number anti-virus programs.  These solutions are widely available and can be installed on your system in minutes and start protecting you right away. 

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In 2003, more than 10 million Americans fell victim to identity theft.

Identity theft costs business and individuals $53 billion dollars annually

In 2003, Americans spent 300 million hours resolving issues related to identity theft.

70% of all identity theft cases are perpetrated by a co-worker or employee of an affiliated business.