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Now a days , there are so many unethical practices in the form of digital attacks which are causing problems

in the form of Information Technology . These attacks are sometimes in the form of malicious software which enter in the system by themselves without the knowledge of user and sometimes in the form of an unauthorized user who get the access to computer system for damaging the stored data , to steal information or to keep the eyes on the activities of computer . Some of the common forms of digital attacks are: Computer Virus , Spam , Phishing , Spyware , Adware , Hacking , Cracking , etc.

MALWARE
Malware stands for Malicious Software . It is a general term used to refer any kind of digital attacks on the computer system .It is a kind of unwanted software which is stored in your system by someone else to perform malicious functions .

Malware can be divided into

number of different categories which include : Computer Virus Spam Adware Spyware Worm Trojan Horse Logic Bomb

Computer Virus
Computer viruses are in fact the malicious programs having the ability to replicate and execute themselves . They can attaching themselves to the other programs , files or data stored in the system automatically without any instructions from the user . It can enter into the other computer by different means like when you copy some data from an infected system to another system or it can come to your system as an e-mail message . Once entered into the system it automatically attaches itself to the system files of your computer .

TYPES OF COMPUTER VIRUS


Based upon their work , computer viruses can be of different types:
Worm
Trojan Bomb

Based upon their target infection it is of various types:


Boot Virus

Program Virus
Macro Virus Stealth Virus

WORM
These are very sophisticated viruses with the ability to spread very quickly . Normally ,these viruses does not cause any harm to the system , but they just keep on replicating themselves to the discs used in the system or through network they keep on spreading to the other systems . They reduce the storage space and available memory of the system , e.g. , Scalper , Morris Worms .

TROJAN
Trojans are those destructive programs that hide its intention as they appear to be the useful utilities . These types of viruses often come to you as e-mail attachments with fascinating names forcing you to open them . They start deleting files in the system . They spread by copying to the other systems , e.g. , Backdoor .

These types of viruses remain inactive and undeleted in the system for a long time and wait for a specific event or date to trigger . For example , Israeli Virus or Friday 13th Virus waits for Friday the 13th , and deletes the program files on that day .Saturday 14th , Tuesday the 13th, etc. are the other examples.

BOMB

BOOT VIRUS
These types of viruses infect the Master Boot Record {MBR} of the hard disc drive or DOS boot record {DBR} of the floppy disc . Every time a system is booted with an infected hard disc or floppy disc , these viruses become active and start infecting the stored data . Danish boot , PC stone , Joshi are the examples of boot virus .

PROGRAM VIRUS
Also known as the Parasitic viruses , they infect the program files of your system having extension name as .COM , .EXE , .SYS , .OVL , .DLL , .SCR , etc . These viruses do not affect the boot records of the system . Program files are their attractive targets because these files are used very frequently and moreover the format of these files is quite simple . So , when these programs are used they become active in the memory of computer and start its destruction work .

MACRO VIRUS
The main target area of these categories of viruses is to infect the data of your system . Whenever you work with the applications like MS-Word , MSEXCEL , etc . You save some important data in the shape of files . These type of viruses destroy the data stored by you causing irrecoverable damage sometimes .They can easily spread from one computer to another on the network or through internet as most of the time data files are transferred from one system to another . Melissa ,Bloodhound , etc .are the examples of macro virus .

STEALTH VIRUS
These types of viruses have the capability to change their appearance by changing their codes . This way , they can hide their existence from the virus scanner programs . Sometimes , it hides the increased size of file due to virus infection causing the file to be scanned as an infected file . Frodo , Brain are the examples of stealth virus .

HOW THE VIRUS SPREAD ?


Viruses programs are created in such a way that they can easily replicate itself once entered in the computer system as soon as an infected program is executed , the virus code is executed first and starts creating its copies to the other programs or boot records . Sometimes they stay inside the memory of computer till it is switched off and sometimes it stays active till the infected application running . They spread through storage media , networks and internet . When the system is switched off , the virus vanishes the memory but resides in the infected area .

Effects Of Virus ON Your System


The available memory of the system decreased

drastically . The working speed of the system gets slower . Unusual messages or characters started appearing on the screen . Data file damaged or corrupted showing unusual characters or symbols in place of actual data . Sometimes even the whole hard disc get reformatted .

It is rightly said that Prevention is better than cure . So , it is always better to take the preventive measures to safeguard your system from any type of virus attack .

Preventive Measures From Virus

PREVENTIVE MEASURES
Avoid the use of external or unknown discs

and if required , scan the disc properly with some good antivirus software . While working with your e-mail account , do not open the unknown mails . Before downloading any file or program from the internet make it sure that the source that you are using is reliable one. Never install the pirated software in your system .

Install an effective Antivirus software in

your system and update it periodically . If your system is connected on a local area network , then restrict the access to your computer and allow only the genuine users to use the system resource . Always keep a backup copy of your data files .

ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE
Anti Virus software are the utilities which prevent the viruses to enter in your system . They can also detect and remove the virus entered in your system . These are the memory resident programs and activated as soon as the system is started . It checks all the files in the system and in case any virus is detected , it removes the virus . It is very important to keep your Anti Virus software updated with the definitions of new viruses . Some popular Anti Virus software are : Norton Anti Virus from Symantec McAfee

SPYWARE
These are the kind of software , downloaded on your computer without your knowledge to track your activities and to report the same to the people who are ready to pay for it . They can also be used to collect personal information of someone for the purpose of identity theft or fraud .Normally they collect the information like : e-mail address , passwords , credit card umbers , web pages visited , etc .

SPAMS
Spam are the unwanted messages which are forcefully sent to a large number of people who otherwise do not want to receive these messages . The most common form of spam is unwanted electronic junk mails in which a single message is sent to individual users with direct addresses . In these mails services and products are promoted by various companies . Most of the time these are annoying but harmless . However , sometimes these are used for identify theft or another fraud .

These are the programs , which deliver unwanted aids in he form of pop-ups to your computer . While browsing the internet these pop-ups start downloading by themselves to your computer and this way they eats up the band width of your internet connection . Due to the nonavailability of sufficient band width the browsing becomes slower and your required pages take more time to appear in the web browser .

ADWARE

PHISHING
It is one of the fraudulent process to acquire some secret information from the user like credit card number , net banking passwords , account data , etc . with the help of an authentic looking e-mail or website . For example , you may receive an e-mail from your bank asking you to update your information regarding your user ID and password of your net banking account . The mail which appears to be genuine one sent by the bank collects the sensitive information and sends it to fraudulent people who may use it later for some cyber crime .

HACKERS A Hacker is a person who possesses high level of computer skills and having good knowledge of the machine and operating system . He attempts to gain access on a remote computer for which he is not authorized for the purpose of corrupting or stealing data in that system . But the main aim of the hacking is to know the details of the system and how do they work .

A Cracker is a person who is expert in breaking the security of a system or network to steal important information without the concept of the other person . Because of this , they are also known as cyber burglars . As their intention is always to cause damage o the other users they are considered to be more dangerous them the hackers .

CRACKERS

FIREWALLS
These can be the hardware or software which protects a system , network or server from the virus or hackers attack . It acts like a traffic cop , allowing or disallowing access to a computer or network or based on the predefined rules .