Types of Computer Virus in 2022 – In the early days of computing, virus attacks were rare. But as internet usage has exploded in recent years, so too have virus attacks. There are now countless different types of computer viruses, and they can cause a tremendous amount of damage to your computer or network if not dealt with quickly. This article will take a look at the seven most common types of computer viruses and what you can do to protect yourself from them.
Table of Contents
1. Executable Viruses
This type of virus is probably the most common. It works by attaching itself to an executable file on your machine, meaning that whenever that program is run, so too will be the virus. These viruses can cause all sorts of trouble for users, from crashing the machine to stealing personal information and sending it back to a remote server.
2. Macro Viruses
This type of virus infects Word and Excel files on the host machine. Whenever you open an infected file, the virus runs automatically and can do anything from corrupting data to stealing information or sending e-mails on your behalf without your knowledge.
3. Web Script Virus
This type of virus is very similar to an executable virus in that it attaches itself to a specific file type on your computer (in this case, HTML websites). However, it differs because it does not run when the site is opened, but rather when you say so by viewing the webpage. One example would be that if you click on a link sent over chat messenger (which has had some code injected into it), the virus will run.
4. Crypto Viruses
The crypto virus is one of the most dangerous. It encrypts your data so that you cannot access it, and then demands payment to unlock it. These viruses can be hard to spot since they often masquerade as legit software or something you have downloaded. The only way to properly protect yourself is by being very careful with what you are opening, where you are going on the internet, etc.
These are also known as the CryptoLocker virus.
5. Downloader Viruses
This type of virus does pretty much what it says: it infects and downloads files to your computer without you knowing about it, often sending them back to a remote server for other malicious purposes. These viruses can be hard to spot since they often use similar file names as standard software but usually come from untrusted sources.
6. Browser Hijackers
This virus is almost the opposite of a downloader virus. Whereas that one downloads files onto your computer, this one changes which files are downloaded to your browser when you browse specific websites. For example, if you go to YouTube and up pops an ad that says “Download Google Chrome” because your current browser doesn’t have flash, then the site may have been infected with a hijacker virus.
7. Boot Sector Viruses
Finally, we have what many consider to be the original type of malware: The boot sector virus. This works by changing your BIOS settings so that whenever it is turned on, not only does it run but also loads a separate program from somewhere else (usually a USB drive). That program is the virus itself, and it can do pretty much anything.
These viruses are especially dangerous for servers as they often require physical access to fix them. Even if you manage to restore it back to how things were before, there’s no knowing whether or not something else has been compromised.
Computer viruses are one of the biggest threats out there right now, and despite most of them being easily avoidable, it only takes one mistake to lose your entire personal or business data. This is why many people use an online backup service, just in case something does happen, they will have a copy somewhere safe.