Malware and viruses
Viruses can delete or corrupt your files, steal passwords, or allow hackers to take over your computer. To minimise the risk of getting a virus:
Watch out for software promoted as 'free' – before you download, make sure the website is trustworthy. It's much safer to go directly to the software provider's site and download from there.
If one of your contacts has a virus on their computer, you might get an email from them containing a virus. Be on the lookout for suspicious subject lines or anything odd-sounding in the email itself. When in doubt, check with your friend to see if they actually sent it.
The risk of getting a virus on your mobile is much lower than on your computer, but some operating systems, like Android, are still vulnerable.
There are several free apps you can download from the Google Play store to keep your Android mobile virus-free, including Avast!, Lookout and TrustGo.
Malware is short for malicious software, it can damage or delete your files, copy your passwords, or take over your computer to send illegal videos or spam emails.
There are several types of malware, including viruses, spyware, worms and Trojans.
Most malware is spread by people installing it accidentally. Sometimes, malware can install itself on a machine. To prevent this:
To check whether you have a virus, scan your computer with up-to-date anti-virus software.
If you find a virus, warn your contacts not to open any unusual emails they receive from you. After you delete a virus, always change the passwords to your online accounts.
If you're not sure about any techy terms, check out our jargon buster
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