Malware: What is it and how can it be detected?

Malware: What is it and how can it be detected?


What is malware?


Malware is a term coined from the phrase “malicious software.” The software is designed as a code that runs on your browser without your knowledge and initiate activity that can either cause damage on your accounts, device or software. Once the software has bypassed your defense wall, the authors can log onto your website or account and commit a crime. Often, financial and identity theft are the two popular damages that arise from these kinds of attacks. You can download malware as a file attachment, browser extension, screen saver or torrent.

You may have received an email or instant message from a friend asking for money, but when you called them they did not have any idea how that happened. Perhaps you have been informed about a funny posting on your Facebook page that was only visible by other people. Malware takes advantage of your online missteps. If you clicked a funny link or play a deceptive game, you are likely
to be hit.

Here are the symptoms of malware attacks:

Symptoms of malware attacks

1. Pop-up window that won’t go away. This is one of the most common signs that you have malware. This may be in the form of a flashy advert that opens more pop-up windows when you click on the close button, fake software update alert, file download or funny advert content that is not related to your browsing history.

2. Your settings have been changed and/or administrator control revoked. If you log into your website or blog and find another administrator whom you did not add, you have been hit. sometimes the software will even change your email recovery address and deny you the opportunity to change the password.

3. Strange browser extensions that will not go away even after deletion.

4. Slow computer. With all the background activity running on your computer or browser, your computer is likely to slow down. Some programs may start crashing, and sometimes crash the entire computer system.

Keyloggers, spyware and worms are the popular types of malware. However, as technology advances so does malware evolve. Today, cybercriminals are deploying AI technology to circumvent cyber defense systems by launching evasive malware. These programs are hard to detect as they change their behavior depending on the status of your computer. They modify themselves so as to attack at the most opportune time. In order to avoid malware attacks, it is necessary to update your OS, browser, apps, and other software regularly. In addition, consider using newer computer/smartphone models.

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