Malware has many faces, and that is that malicious programs reproduce themselves on computers in different ways. Whether it’s viruses, spyware, or Trojans, the presence of malicious software on computer systems should always be avoided. What types of malware are there? In this guide we tell you what is the best way to protect yourself from their attacks and what you can do if your computer or the web space of your server becomes infected.
The term malware refers to a type of software that has generally malicious functions. Most users simply identify it as a virus, thus moving away from the definition and real dimension of malicious software. A computer virus represents a specific type of malware and is different from many other types.
Viruses are programs that spread independently, reproduce, and infiltrate other computer programs. They are the most traditional and well-known form of malicious software. When a virus activates, it reproduces and can impair the functionality of the computer, destroy data, spy on the user, or even damage hardware.
Computer worms reproduce and spread more actively than viruses and do not need to alter files, but instead access systems through networks or storage devices. Computer worms that spread via email use a user’s email program to distribute themselves through the contacts in the address book. Like viruses, worms can harm the system and are often used so that the attacker can exercise some control over other people’s equipment. Today they are one of the most widely used types of malware.
Trojan horses, better known as Trojans (their name refers to the Greek myth collected by Homer in The Odyssey ), are presented as apparently harmless programs, but in reality they try to access computer systems and, if they succeed, run on them. functions that negatively affect the user. Trojans are capable of carrying out harmful actions, such as monitoring data traffic on a computer or even copying and sending files. Others, for their part, execute and modify certain programs on the computer and install new software (in most cases, spyware or adware). Trojans can even be remotely controlled(For example, through a backdoor or back door), which gives other users the possibility of misusing a computer in what is now known as cybercrime.
The term derives from English and is made up of “advertisement” (“Ad”) and software (“ware”). Adware allows advertising to be viewed in a program and, in most cases, is part of free software and is legitimate. However, it can be dangerous when you make changes to the system or browser settings without asking and displaying, for example, pseudo web pages or pop-ups.
With this software, user data can be spied on to be transmitted to the manufacturer or third parties without them being aware that they are being observed. Information obtained through spyware is often used for commercial purposes and this results, for example, in advertisements related to such data.
Spyware and adware fall into the category of Greyware , as they do not cause direct damage to the system. However, both can decrease the performance and security of the equipment.
Scareware is software designed to scare and confuse the user, usually through false warnings that alert the presence of malware on the computer. If the use of paid software is recommended to remove malware, you can speak of Rogue Software, a program that infects the computer when the user purchases and installs the alleged application.
This extortion software goes a little further than scareware, as it blocks access to a computer’s operating system or to certain files and asks for the payment of a ransom for unlocking it.
The tailgate refers to a function rather than a separate program. It is a software component through which an external user can access a computer without the user realizing it.
Remote access to a computer is often used for Denial of Service (DoS) attacks, which paralyze Internet services, or for sending spam emails. Backdoors access the system normally through Trojans, computer worms or viruses.