Adware, Spyware, and Malware OH MY!
Adware, spyware and malware can compromise your access to IM, e-mail and the Web. No one is immune to malicious programs and intrusions. The information on this webpage can help you protect your computer from malicious software.
For more information and Tips on prevention, visit OnGuardOnline.gov
Think you have Adware, Spyware, or Malware?
Here are a few things to watch out for:
- Your computer is processing things unusually slowly
- Your software is malfunctioning or displaying a lot of error messages
- Your computer won't shut down or restart
- Your computer has a lot more pop-up ads or they are popping up when you're not surfing the Web
- Your computer launches programs or Web pages that you didn't intend to use or sends emails that you didn't write
Adware is a type of software that is downloaded to your computer to show you advertisements. These advertisements may take many forms, from relatively noninvasive banners within a program, to very invasive pop-up windows that come up regardless of what you are doing in the foreground.
Some adware can be more malicious, it may trick you into installing it by creating a pop-up on your screen that looks like a Microsoft error or alert. You may have to click "OK" or "Cancel" to get rid of the alert, but in doing so, you are actually inviting the adware or other malicious software to install on your computer.
Spyware is computer software that is installed secretly on a computer. Its purpose is to intercept or take partial control over the user's interaction with the computer. Spyware can gather personal information, such as surfing habits, sites visited and interfere with user's control of the computer. Spyware can even change computer settings, resulting in slow connection speeds, different home pages, and loss of Internet or other programs. This occurs without the user's informed consent.
A computer virus is a program that can copy itself and infect a computer without the permission and knowledge of the user. The term "Virus" is also commonly used to refer to other types of malicious code, such as malware, spyware and adware. Most viruses are covert and this makes it hard for the average user to notice, find and disable.
Drive-by-downloads occur when Adware and other malicious software exploit weaknesses in your computer's security. Some websites have programs designed to install adware on your computer as you surf the Internet by finding holes in your computer's security and installing malicious software when you view their webpages. This occurs without your consent
Malware is a linguistic blend of words derived from two words, malicious and software. Malware is the general term used for computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses, most root kits, spyware, and dishonest adware.
Phishing is a type of deception designed to steal your valuable personal data, such as credit card numbers, passwords, account data, or other information. Phishing is typically carried out by e-mail or instant messaging, and it often directs users to enter details at a fake website whose look and feel are almost identical to the legitimate one.
E-mail spam, also known as junk e-mail, is a subset of spam that involves nearly identical messages sent to numerous recipients bye e-mail.
**NOTE: Always keep your anti-virus and computer updates current
Follow these steps to help eradicate adware, spyware and malware from your computer.
First, disable system restore
Now disable the Recycle bin
Check your anti-virus program quarantine and backup folders.
- Take note of what, if any, files that may be listed in these folders.
- Delete any files that are listed in these folders.
- If you have a red circle around the Symantec icon and/or receive alerts that Symantec's auto protect is disabled, please seek help from IT.
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