"Computer Viruses: Prevention is Better Than Cure!"
How Computer Viruses can spread to your PC?
Whenever you share data with another computer or computer user, you risk exposing your computer to potential viruses.
Once the virus is made it will generally be distributed through internet, e-mail, shareware programs, pirated software, or other various ways of transporting data, such as through diskette, CD, and network.
Generally, the Internet is the easiest way and more likely cause you to get a virus. You computer can be infected by a virus from files that you download from web sites, or by opening attachments to email and newsgroup messages.
You may also get infected if you visit the unsecure web sites and click on unknown ads displayed on the site without download anything.
Once the computer viruses infected a PC, it can spread rapidly throughout the PCs in the entire network (LAN). Also, you may not notice that copying data from one computer to another using the flash drive, diskette may explore you to the risk of viruses.
Computer viruses have the capability of infecting any file however it will generally attack .doc, .xls, .com, .exe, .sys, .bin, or any data files. Once the virus infects someone's computer it will either start infecting other data, destroying data, overwriting data, corrupting programs, etc.
The Symptoms of a Virus
The following are possibilities you may experience when you are infected with a virus. Remember that you also may be experiencing any of the following issues and not have a virus.
- Delete or corrupt files
- Always pop-up messages when browsing online.
- Send unwanted emails to everyone on your contact list.
- Changes volume label.
- Cause system to hang or freeze randomly.
- Randomly overwrites sectors on the hard disk.
- Attempts to access the hard disk drive can result in error messages such as invalid drive specification.
- Cause the system to run slow.
- No Internet connection.
- Logical partitions created, partitions decrease in size.
- A directory may be displayed as garbage.
- Directory order may be modified so files such as COM files will start at the beginning of the directory.
- Disable ports such as LPT or COM ports.
- Caused keyboard keys to be remapped, i.e. you press A but screen display G.
- Cause activity on HDD or FDD randomly.
- Decrease memory size (caused insufficient memory in long run).
- Extend start / boot times.
- The computer fails to start and displays errors.
- Increase disk access times.
- Cause computer to make strange noises, make music, or clicking beeps.
- Different types of error messages on screen.
Of course the lists here are just examples of the possible symptoms when computer are infected by viruses. In real situation, there are lots more unpredictable computer behaviors that cause by the viruses.
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