Malware is a broad term for various malicious software, including viruses, spyware, adware, browser hijacking software, and fake security and updating programs.
Once the software is installed on your computer, they can seriously affect your privacy and security. For example, malware is known for relaying personal information to advertisers and other third parties without user consent. Some programs are also known for containing worms and viruses that cause a great deal of computer damage – among the top culprits are Flash updates, Java updates, Driver updates and fake anti-virus scanning software.
Types of Malware
- Viruses which are the most commonly known form of malware and potentially the most dangerous. They can do anything from locking the fies on your computer, erasing the data, hijacking your computer to attack other systems, send spam or host and /or share illegal content.
- Spyware collects your personal information and passes it on to interested third parties without your knowledge or consent. Spyware is also known for installing Trojan viruses on the host computer
- Adware displays annoying pop-up and pop-behind advertisements when you are online.
- Fake security software poses as legitimate software to trick you into opening your system to further infection, providing personal information to third parties and much more.
Browser hijacking software changes your browser settings (such as your home page, search providers & toolbars), displays pop-up ads and creates new desktop shortcuts. It can also relay your personal preferences to interested third parties.