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VIRUS REMOVAL, PC CLEANUP

Over the past decade viruses have made the internet an increasingly hostile cyber environment for all internet users.

Cyber crimes are launched at a broad pool of victims through viruses, adware, spyware and now fake antivirus programs.  Viruses can infiltrate laptops and PCs at any time.  Unless you already have one of these services, there’s nothing that prevents sensitive information, such as credit card numbers, from being stolen during your regular surfing activities (i.e. online shopping, surfing, and downloading the internet).

Security service providers observed a 30% increase in network and Web‐based security events over a 4‐month period among their clients.  The number of events rose from 1.8 billion to 2.5 billion events per day.

Technical vulnerabilities can be resolved by using firewalls or a antivirus program.  However, other vulnerabilities can compromise you.   This can include  unsecured Wi-Fi connections, outdated Antivirus programs, and using peer-to-peer applications (Bit Torrent).  Just these few applications can leave your PC exposed to malware (malicious software such as viruses, adware, spyware, worms, trojans, dialler, hijackers, backdoor and fake antivirus programs).  Definitely use a reliable antivirus program on every Laptop/MAC/PC you own to reduce any exposure to cyber crimes.

It is important to note that all laptops and PC’s are susceptible to catching a virus (or any kind of malaware).  You are not protect just because your computer runs on a different operating system than Windows.  Though it’s more common that Windows users are affect with viruses than users with other operating systems, with the rise in popularity for MAC systems, viruses specifically made for MACs are increasing.

Malware such as viruses, adware, spyware, worms, trojans, dialler, hijackers, backdoor and fake antivirus programs are caught and alters they way you PC/MAC/Laptop behaves in various ways.

Viruses are download from a file.  When that file is run, the virus installs on to the Laptop/MAC/PC.  Viruses then either spread to other computers or can steal credit card information, bank account information, etc.  Spyware is downloaded and installed the same way as a virus.  Spyware observers the users internet habits, like what pages the user goes to.  Certain spyware installs a keylog which records every keystroke the user has typed on the Laptop/MAC/PC.  This means that if the user does online banking, the keylog has recorded the user name and password to log on to the user’s bank account.  For users who do online shopping, the keylog records the credit card number.  Dialler malware is used by hackers to call up sex phone lines (the one’s that charge a premium rate per minute on the phone line).  The cost of this is passed on to the unsuspecting user.  Backdoor malware takes advantage of security flaws from websites that hasn’t upgraded to the recommended security measures.  As the user enters one of these backdoor websites, the malware remotely takes control of the user’s Laptop/MAC/PC.  The user’s Laptop/MAC/PC then acts as a medium to launch an attack onto other computers or illegally distributes copyrighted media.

Vista and Windows 7’s security audits have amped up their security measures to protect users from catching a virus.  These measures are making it difficult for hackers to acquire sensitive information through hacking  Laptop/MAC/PCs.  However, we are seeing the emergence of websites being hacked.  If a site is hacked or hijacked (done by taking advantage of weak security measures in the website), the first time a internet user accesses a site, an frightening display messages will appear warning the Laptop/MAC/PC user that their sysptem is infected with a virus.   The users will then be prompted to pay a fee to download the antivirus program to remove the virus.  In actuality though by clicking to download the program, the user unwittingly is downloading a fake antivirus program.  The user has just downloaded the fake antivirus program/virus onto their Laptop/MAC/PC.

Websites are vulenurable if the webmaster of the sites have not download the newest security audits for their site’s content management system.  Any internet user with their own blog sites or websites are at risk.  It’s best to update to the newest version of content management systems to take advantage of beefed up security audits.

If your Laptop/MAC/PC is already infected with a virus, here are some common tall tale sign to look out for.

-Does the Laptop/MAC/PC get spammed with pop ups.

-Does the Laptop/MAC/PC also run slower than normal/doesn’t respond

-Are programs not opening or function as they normally should

-Is  the Laptop/MAC/PC restarting on it’s own

-Is the user having problems/completely blocked from logging onto the internet

Please note that any one specific problem from above doesn’t mean the user has a virus.  It could be do to changes in a programs such as an update or an hardware issue.  However, a combination of the above symptoms as well as any others list here, it is very likely that the user has caught a virus.

Viruses are not the only type of malware to be on the watch for.  Adware,

For information on the names of fake antivirus programs  just emerging, links to removal procedures, and details about how the fake antivirus programs work and affect your Laptop/MAC/PC, go to the Tech News section of New York Laptop Repair.

New York Laptop Repair offers computer related services such as virus removal.  Stop by our Midtown office to get a diagnostic.  Or give  a call at New York Laptop Repair: 646-368-8307.

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