How To Know If You Have A Computer Virus Infection

by Jeremy Miller, Technician
There is a lot of anti-virus software on the market today. They are created from many different software developers. All of them are a little different in how they protect your system.

There is no guarantee that your anti-virus software can protect you from any virus out there.

First let’s look at how anti-virus software works. Anti-virus software is usually installed on your computer, then it is scheduled to scan your computer regularly. A virus scan will scan each file on your computer for a “known” virus signature.

A virus signature is a piece of code that is known to your anti-virus software manufacturer as a virus. If your anti-virus detects a signature it will either remove it or ask you how to handle the file. You should remove any viruses that your anti-virus finds for you.

Most anti-viruses come with heuristic protection as well, which is when your anti-virus is able to detect suspicious activity on your computer.

Viruses are known to leak information, such as online banking information, or any other personal or confidential information.

They can lie dormant waiting for a specific user interaction before becoming active. They have the potential to cause irreparable damage to computer operating systems.

Causes of a computer virus infection

There are many ways to get a virus on your computer with having an anti-virus software installed. The main reason is that virus developers have studied many different anti-virus software, and have been able to write viruses that cannot yet be detected by most anti-viruses.

The reason your anti-virus software cannot detect a newly written infection is because the anti-virus manufacturer has not yet seen the virus and does not have a signature in the database for it. This is the big reason why you should keep your anti-virus software up-to-date.

Another reason that your anti-virus software might not detect a virus would be because you trusted it.

Have you ever saw a pop-up on your screen asking for your permission to allow a program to run? If so then you may have allowed a virus to infect your system.

The last most common cause of infection is attempting to “Speed up your PC.” There is a lot of software out there that claims to speed up your PC for free. The problem is that good software is not free. Some free versions of software can actually slow your computer down, to promote the paid-version.

Also when downloading this software, there is usually a few links that look like download links. If you click on the wrong one, you may install a virus. Also once you do get the right link, there are usually additional software included during the installation process.

You should always pay attention to every screen during the installation process to make sure you are only installing what you intended to install. There are a number of ways to detect if you may have a virus on your computer.

Your computer should behave regularly. This means your computer should not have any drastic changes day-to-day.

If you have lost access to something, or cannot connect to sites or services that you normally can you may have a virus. If you are browsing the Internet and your address bar does not go directly to the site you want, you may have a virus.

Also if your computer takes longer to startup than usual, this may be a sign of a virus.

If you have any of these symptoms on your computer or if you would like to proactively manage your computer’s security, you should contact us for assistance.

We recommend regular check-ups for your computer to prevent any malicious activity on your computer. You can contact us to work out a plan to combat malicious activity on your computer that will be simple and easy to understand.