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Types Of Malware Commonly Found Online

Malware, or malicious software, is a broad term used to describe a set of programs intended to carry out unauthorized activities. When a malware is injected into a computer system, it can affect its functioning, steal important files, dodge access controls and track the user’s online activity. In order to prevent these malicious programs from infecting your system, it is important to understand the different types of malware found online. Some of these have been discussed below:


A computer virus mainly infects a computer system through a malicious code embedded in a software or program. It can be used to steal information, damage hard disk, relay spam email and advertizements, create botnets etc. When a user launches the infected program, the virus can spread on to other computers through email attachments, IMs, shared network, removable storage devices etc.


A Trojan typically comes disguised as useful software in order to convince the user to download and install it. Once executed, it can give remote access of your computer system to the hacker. The program is designed to take complete control of the victim’s system with the purpose of causing damage or pilfering confidential information. A Trojan allows the hacker to delete or modify files, steal financial information, install more malware etc.


This type of malware works by anonymously tracking a user’s online activity and transmitting it to a cybercriminal. Stealing financial information, such as bank account numbers, online banking and credit card details, is the main target of most spyware. It can also slow down the infected computer, particularly when there is more than one program running.


A rootkit is designed to function remotely so as to avoid being detected by the users or anti-virus software. Once installed on a computer system, a rootkit can steal or gain access to your information, execute program files, modify security software, install another malware and alter system configurations. It can even block installation of anti-virus software or lock the system to prevent detection.


Computer worms may spread in a disguised form by exploiting security vulnerabilities in the operating system. They can create a backdoor in your computer which allows a hacker to access the system remotely, making it vulnerable to a Denial-of-service (DoS) attack. Unlike viruses, worms can self-replicate, without the need of a host and can send out its copies to several other systems, by infiltrating contacts in your email or phone book.

It is important that you follow the requisite security measures to avoid malware attacks and protect your identity online.

Social Networking Safety Tips

As the popularity of social networking websites has increased through all these years, the risks of using them have also augmented. A lot of people do not follow proper security measures and fail to identify the potential consequences of sharing too much information on these websites. Hackers, virus writers, spammers as well as other cybercriminals constantly track the activity of users and manipulate the information for malicious purposes.

Here are some tips to stay safe while using social networks:

  • Share Limited Information: Make sure you do not post sensitive personal information on your public profile, such as contact number, birthday, home town etc. It will safeguard your online safety and protect you against identity theft. Hackers may use this information to find answer to your security question and gain access to your account. Also, maintain caution while sharing photos and information that you do not want everyone to see.
  • Customize Privacy Settings: Social networking websites offer various privacy options to give users complete control over their profiles. Customize your account’s settings to restrict access to a limited number of people. Filter the people or groups who can see your basic information, photos, friends and updates.
  • Be Wary Of Third-Party Applications: Many social networking websites allow you to download and install third-party applications. You must be cautious while downloading which apps to install. These may be targeted at stealing your personal information or infecting your device with a malware. Make sure you read the privacy policy of the app to know what information it needs to access.
  • Be Cautious While Clicking On Links: Do not visit a social networking website through a link that you received in an email or text message. It may redirect you to a fake website intended to steal your login details. Also, links shared by friends or acquaintances should not be clicked. Instead, you should manually enter the URL into your browser’s address bar to ensure that you are visiting a legitimate website.
  • Accept Only People You Know: Social networking websites make it easy for people to fabricate or hide their identities. Cybercriminals may create fake profiles to contact you and access sensitive information. Hence, you must accept only those people whom you know in person. While interacting with strangers, be careful on the type of information you share.

For more social networking safety tips, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375 – 9654.