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What is the difference between a Virus, Malware, Adware, Trojans, and Ransomware?

difference between virus malware adware trojans ransomware

Want to know the difference between Virus, Malware, Adware, Trojans, and Ransomware? In this post, we will show you the differences between these cyber threats. Read on.

What is a computer virus?

A computer virus is a program which when executed, has the ability to replicate itself – by modifying the code of other programs and adding its own code.

When this is achieved, the programs are said to be infected with a computer virus. The creators of computer viruses use security vulnerabilities (also called exploits) to infect systems, thereby spreading the virus.

What Are The Signs Of Computer Virus Infection?

Your computer is suffering from a computer virus if any of the following happens:

  • If the computer boots slower than normal, it may be a virus slowing it down.
  • Unknown background processes with shady process name.
  • When programs known to run normally on the computer crashes or loads extra slowly, it may be due to a virus working in the background.
  • Strange which cannot be deleted shows up on your PC.

What is Trojan horse?

This is the most common case of malware covering more than 68% of all malwares.

Trojan horse is a malware which misleads the target victim of its true intention. It may be spread by many ways. For example, a mail disguised to appear as safe may share the malware.

Trojans may allow attackers to personal information and identity theft.

What are the signs of Trojan Horse Infection?

Is your computer showing any of these signs? Probably, a Trojan horse is galloping in your computer.

  • Displaying advertisements in a bid to make you click them.
  • A different program is run in place of another program.
  • When forms pop-up to ask for your information.

READ ALSO: What are Cyber Threats? How to Secure your Computer against Cyber Threats?

What is Adware?

An adware is a computer program that secretly installs itself on the victim’s computer and display annoying, obtrusive ads.

However, it should be noted that not all adware are malware. Software that contains legal advertisements is also seen as adware.

What Are the Signs of Adware Intrusion?

You probably have an adware if your computer…

  • Displays annoying pop-ups.
  • Displays obtrusive ads especially in non-closable windows. These ads may appear based on your recent browsing. It means the adware is also embedded with spyware.

READ ALSOWhat Are Network Firewalls?

What is Ransomware?

ransomwareYou’ve ever heard of kidnapping for ransom? Ransomware does something related to that.

It is carried out usually by Cryptoviral Extortion. This is when attackers threaten to block the user’s data, or even block them until a ransom is paid via cryptocurrency.

Software used to perpetrate Ransomware is usually shared as Trojans. Victims download it thinking they downloaded good software.

Boom! –– your files are locked. $400 if you need your files.

Now you the different types of virus and malware. It’s time to know if they already exist in your computer system. The different computer malwares bring different symptoms.

What Are the Signs of Ransomware Infection?

Your computer is infected by a ransomware if it has the following characteristics.

  • Displays threatening pop-ups demanding for payment.
  • You lost access to some of your files.
  • You can’t login to your computer even with the right login details.

What Is Malware?

A malware (coined from malicious software) therefore could be any software which us intended by the writers to cause harm or serious damage to a computer or the computer network.

The malware is usually disguised as harmless software which the target innocently downloads and causes damage after being introduced to the computer.

A popular example of malware is a ‘computer virus’. Other examples include Trojan horses, ransomware, adware, spyware, etc.

A computer virus is different from a malware in the sense that a malware is any software whose function is disguised and cause problems to the computer.

READ ALSO: Best Free Antivirus for Windows PC (Not Free Trial)

What Are the Signs of Malware Infection?

Computer virus, adware, ransomware and Trojan horse are all types of malware, the signs of malware include a combination of all the above listed -wares.

How to Prevent Computer Virus

It’s better to be safe than sorry. There different ways of preventing computer viruses, some of which includes:

  • Avoid downloading genuine software from shady websites.
  • Avoid clicking malicious links in emails.

Conclusion

Lastly, since you are able to identify the differences between the cyber threats i.e. virus, adware, trojan horse, ransomware, and malware. It’s a great idea to protect your computer and make sure your computer never falls sick.

Want to secure your digital devices? You can Start Here, or ask us.

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Daniel Segun

Editor-in-Chief at SecureBlitz Media
Daniel Segun is a Content Writer and Editor with over 6 years of experience. When not writing, he's probably busy designing graphics or developing websites.
Daniel Segun
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