Computer Infection Education series I

26 Feb 2010 by BradB, No Comments »


“a segment of self-replicating code planted illegally in a computer program, often to damage or shut down a system or network.”

Viruses by definition are simply computer codes that replicate and cause damage. This can entail just about any kind of infection that can be found on a computer. However, this at one time referred to a more simple infection that did only as the definition states. These days there are so many sub-categories that what most customers know as a “virus” doesn’t even truly exist anymore. For instance, it is very rare to see any user created data damaged by an infection. That means the days of having a word document infected by a virus (for example) are gone. Newer infections may damage or alter other files such as windows system files or other start up programs. These are a fraction of cases, and also the hardest to clean by normal methods.

Another distinction is that most of the early virus infections main purpose was to destroy files. I equate it to computer graffiti. Newer infections exist to steal information or generate money in one way shape or form for the creator of the infection. It almost seems as if these young programmers who made these early virus infections grew up and found ways to make money off their horrible creations.

In summary, it’s ok to in computer terms to refer to an infection as a virus. Just be aware that when using this term it’s a generalization. Your tech will be able to provide you with a more descriptive term to better communicate to you what kind of risk you are facing and the work involved in removal. These terms will be detailed in future articles.

Stay Tuned!

Brad Button

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