How to Protect Your Data From Computer Viruses?

Computer viruses are a concern of each and every single computer user. These tiny little programs can do a lot of damage! They are designed to go from one system to the next system, with disregard for safety. As a matter of fact, they are actually designed to cause damage to the computers that they infect.

Computer viruses can do all sorts of things to a computer system. They can do something as mild as deleting certain pieces of data off of the computer, or can be as serious as to wipe the contents from a hard drive. These small, malicious programs can also attach themselves to an email program so that the damage is spread over many different computers.

Email is the most common method in which computer viruses are spread from one computer to another. These viruses are often disguised as an attachment of something that may be of interest to someone. For example, it may be disguised as a video clip, a joke, a picture or similar attachment. Nine times out of ten, it is attached as an “.exe” file.

There are many viruses embedded in downloads that can be retrieved from the internet. This is also a very popular mode of infection. This is particularly true when individuals download specific files from peer to peer file sharing programs, and open source programs. It has been estimated that nearly 90% of all downloads on these types of websites are infected with a computer virus.

There are many different signs and symptoms that may be associated with a computer virus infection. The following details these. Please keep in mind, however, that these are POTENTIAL signs and symptoms of an infection:

1. If you find that your computer system seems to be experiencing some sluggishness, or running a bit slower than it normally operates, the potential for being infected with a computer virus is quite high. If you do not have a computer virus, you may be experiencing issues with spyware on the system.

2. If your computer has already been attacked by a virus, it is quite likely that you may start to see various types of error messages that you are unfamiliar with.

3. Many individuals who experience an infection with a computer virus may start to notice that the computer system will often lock up and stop responding. This may or may not be accompanied by error messages.

4. Applications and programs on a computer that is infected with a virus may start to fail to initialize and/or run properly. If this issue is not corrected by uninstalling and reinstalling the application or program, you may be experiencing complications with a serious computer virus that is corrupting the data on your hard drive.

5. Many computer viruses pose a serious threat to the various disk drives that are on the computer system. When an infection is occurring, it may become evident that the various disk drives on the computer system are not made accessible. This is definitely a sign of a very serious computer virus infection.

6. Many individuals who experience complications with computer viruses may find that they experience issues in printing and other types of tasks. This is often a result of corruption to the files in the drivers of the printer, and other hardware products.

If you find that you experience any of the above mentioned symptoms, or symptoms that are similar in nature, you should consider placing an anti-virus program on your computer and running a thorough scan. You will likely find that, once the scan is complete; there is at least one virus on the computer that is causing your complications.

You can remove most viruses in this manner, or with the malicious software removal tool that is offered by Microsoft. Viruses cannot be removed in the “add/remove” programs option in your computer. In order to remove them completely, they must be controlled by a good anti-virus software suite or a malicious software removal tool.

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From Rajagopalan, A computer professional helping people in the usage of computers with safety and security.