What are the different types of Viruses, Spyware and Malware ?

  • Virus

A computer virus is a piece of software that can 'infect' a computer, install itself and copy itself to other computers, without the users knowledge or permission. It usually attaches itself to other computer programs, data files, or the boot sector of a Hard drive.

  • Malware

Malware is short for malicious software. Malware is the name given to any type of software that could harm a computer system, interfere with and gather a user's data, or make the computer perform actions without the owner's knowledge or permission.

  • Trojan horse

A type of malware that uses malicious code to install software that seems ok, but is hidden to create back doors into a system typically causing loss or theft of data from an external source.

  • Worm

Unlike a virus, a worm, is a standalone piece of malicious software that replicates itself in order to spread to other computers. It often uses a computer network to spread itself, relying on security flaws on the target system to allow access.

  • Spyware

Spyware is software that aids in gathering information about a person or organization without their knowledge, they can monitor and log the activity performed on a target system, like log key strokes, or gather credit card and other information.

  • Adware

Adware is software which can automatically causes pop-up and banner adverts to be displayed in order to generate revenue for its author or publisher. A lot of freeware will use Adware but not always in a malicious way, if it was malicious, it would then be classed as spyware or malware.