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What Are Computer Viruses

Computer viruses are programs that copy and infect a computer without the consent or awareness of the owner. It is a type of malware, which means malicious software. Since fast internet connections have become common to acquire now days, this has made it easier to get malicious code when people access the internet.

How does it happen?

The most common way is by visiting sites that are harmfull and/ or downloading files from these sites without taking the necessary precautions to make sure they are not infected by running anti virus software before opening them. Note: If you stublem into a website that pops a message telling you that your computer may be at risk of a virus, or that you have a virus, and it asks you to scan the computer to fix it, do not do it. You will actually install their virus. The problem isn't downloading the program. It is installing it because that's when the virus gets in your system.

Other ways for computer viruses to infect your computer could be copying programs or files from friends through floppy disks or USB memories without running an anti virus first to make sure they're not infected, or by opening infected attachment from e-mail accounts; Especially e-mails from people you don't recognize. As a rule of thumb, never open an e-mail from a person you don't know. Remember curiosity killed the cat. There are some more powerful viruses that just by opening the e-mail (not the attachment), you can get the virus to spread in your computer and infected.

What harm will it do to the computer?

Some malware are programmed to harm your computer by damaging software, deleting files, corrupting the registry of the computer, or sometimes even re-formatting the hard disk, which means, you will loose all your information.

Other types of viruses do not cause harm to your computer when you’re using it, but they will make their presence known by showing a video, or an audio message to your computer when you least expect it which are also known as pop ups.

While they will not harm your computer, they can still create problems as they take resources from your machine (like memory usage) when executing itself. They also take space from your hard drive and since it is running constantly, they will slow down your computer performance.

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