The Beginner’s Guide to 5 Common Computer Viruses





The Beginner’s Guide to 5 Common Computer Viruses


Viruses. They’re nothing more than bits of code at first glance, hidden within documents and website just like the ones we use daily. But when a virus begins to take effect, it can mean lost files, stolen sensitive data, and a complete breach of security for your system! Although you’ve probably been warned about viruses in the past, there’s a chance you’ve never been shown how one really works. To help with that, here are five of the most common virus types you might hear about during your time online.


File Infector Virus


If your computer warns you when you try opening files downloaded from the internet, file infectors are likely why. The most common virus type, file infectors are found in executable files you download to your computer. This kind of virus is actually rather harmless until you execute the file to which it’s attached. Once you do, however, this virus can completely overwrite files, entirely changing their purposes and allowing for malicious actions and further spread.


Polymorphic Virus 


A polymorphic virus is dangerous not just because of what it can do, but because of the many ways it can be done. Normally, when a virus executes, any antivirus software on your computer can detect the code the virus used, and use that information to find and neutralize the virus. Polymorphic viruses get around your antivirus software by using different code that can change over time, which makes them harder to pinpoint. Old methods of execution are encrypted, stopping antivirus programs from using them.


Browser Hijacker 


Have you ever found yourself looking at a website you had no intention of looking at, or using search engines you’ve never heard of? If so, there’s a small chance your internet browser of choice might be playing host to a browser hijacker. This particular virus type takes over specific functions of your browser, giving it control. Hijackers can be used to redirect you to sites you didn’t intend to go to, alter your search and home page preferences, and more. These viruses can even be used to install key loggers, which record the keystrokes taken by your keyboard! A key logger can record your passwords and private, personal information; all of which can be passed on to the virus’s creator.


Web Scripting Virus


When most people think “computer virus,” there’s a good chance this particular kind is what they’re thinking of. Web scripting viruses are the classic “I went to a dangerous website and now bad things are happening” virus. It works by taking advantage of the code websites use to enhance your browsing experience with videos, animations and effects. This code can be exploited to let a virus infect other programs on your computer, or to control certain functions of your computer.


Macro Virus


A “macro” is a small program that can be embedded in documents like emails or text files. They contain instructions on how programs should behave or what they should run when opened. These can be incredibly useful for simplifying long, tedious tasks, but they’re also the perfect hosts for troublesome viruses. If a virus is written and disguised as a macro, it can force your computer to take actions you never intended it to take. Regrettably, the wide amount of helpful actions macros can take gives viruses an equally wide range of access to your computer, so avoiding them is a matter of being careful what you download and open.


If your system’s been hit with a virus, CJ Computer Services are here to help. We specialize in Wake Forest computer repair, and we can help you identify and remove the virus, malware or spyware that’s been bugging you. Contact us today!


7 Computer Tips and Tricks for Mobile Device Security

7 Computer Tips and Tricks for Mobile Device Security


computer tips and tricks

Always remember to log out completely, even if you only plan to be away from your devices for just a few minutes.


With more people using mobile devices at work, at home and on the go, cybercriminals are exploiting vulnerabilities to hack personal and company data. By instructing your family members to follow a few important computer tips and tricks to secure mobile devices, you can all protect personal information and apps. With the possibility of malware, and lost or stolen laptops, tablets and smart phones, implementing mobile security measures safeguards your devices while you’re in Wake Forest or in any other part of the world.


1. Log Out


When not using your mobile devices, always remember to log out completely, even if you only plan to be away from your device for just a few minutes. Getting a drink of water or briefly chatting with someone is all the time a criminal needs to steal your device or access your data if you’re still logged in.


2. Lock the Device


Locking the device keeps your personal data safe if someone steals your device or your misplace it. By using a strong password you can protect any sensitive data. The best passwords are hack-proof. This means choosing a long password that you can remember, but others can’t guess. The password should have upper case and lower case letters, numbers and symbols. Using and birthdays of family members or pets are never good choices for passwords.

3. Use Auto-Destruct


If there is sensitive or confidential data on a device, one option more and more companies are using is an auto-destruct feature that wipes the entire device clean if there is a certain number of failed password attempts. While some may consider this extreme for personal devices, it’s one way to ensure that financial and banking information doesn’t fall into the hands of identity thieves or hackers should you lose your device or it’s stolen. Another option is to install software on a device that allows you to remotely wipe all the data from a missing device.

4. Activate Updates Immediately


Patches are common with laptops and smartphones. When an update is made available, you should change settings on devices to automatically install the updates. The second best option is to manually allow the updates to install immediately on a device instead of waiting until later. The sooner the mobile device has the newest security measures in place, the more protected the device is.


5. Install Security Software


Malware infects all types of devices and causes a host of problems from viruses that infect your device to spyware that invades your privacy. It’s essential to have security software on all devices that includes anti-virus software, anti-spyware software, and a firewall to protect against all types of malicious programs.


6. Buy Apps Only From Trusted Stores


Many apps contain malicious code, so the only way to prevent adding malware to mobile devices is for you to carefully select the apps you install. It’s best to only purchase or download apps that get reviews from consumers. You should only purchase these apps from trusted app stores.


7. Limit Public WI-Fi Usage


Public Wi-Fi may be convenient when you’re out and about, but security measures aren’t very good. When using public Wi-Fi networks it’s best to just surf the Internet, play games, or engage in other activities that don’t require you to use a password or give account numbers such as making a purchase or doing online banking.


You can keep your mobile devices safer by implementing the above techniques. If your mobile device isn’t working properly despite taking precautions, or if you’re having problems with a laptop or desktop computer, you need to contact a computer repair expert. Contact us today if you need computer repair in Wake Forest, Durham or Raleigh.