Malware is any type of harmful program that seeks to damage or gain unauthorised access to your computer system.
Part 1: SiX Types of Malware
A virus can replicate itself and spread from system to system by attaching itself to infected files.
A virus is only activated when opened by a human.
Once activated, a virus can change data or corrupt a system so that it stops working.
A trojan is a harmful program that looks like legitimate software so users are tricked into installing it.
A trojan secretly gives the attacker backdoor access to the system.
Trojans do not self replicate or infect other files.
Ransomware locks files on a computer system using encryption so that a user can no longer access them.
The attacker demands money from the victim to decrypt (unlock) the data.
Attackers usually use digital currencies like bitcoin which makes it hard to trace them.
Spyware secretly records the activities of a user on a computer.
The main aim of spyware is to record usernames, passwords and credit card information.
All recorded information is secretly passed back to the attacker to use.
A keylogger secretly records the key presses of a user on a computer. Data is stored or sent back to the attacker.
The main aim of a keylogger is to record usernames, passwords and credit card information.
Keyloggers can be downloaded or plugged into the USB port.
A worm can replicate itself and spread from system to system by finding weaknesses in software.
A worm does not need an infected file or human interaction to spread.
A worm can spread very quickly across a network once it has infiltrated it.
Part 2: Four ways malware cAN infect your system
downloading an infected file from an insecure website.
2. Phishing emails - clicking on attachments or links in spam emails.
3. Installing malware from a physical device, e.g. USB stick.
4. Self-replicating malware, such as worms, spreading across a network.