Viruses are malicious software known as malware. Malware can delete files, steal personal information and damage your computer. Here are the top 10 Signs of an infected computer. Do you have any of these symptoms?
1. Computer is slower than usual
Computers infected with malware run much slower than they normally would. This is because the malware runs in the background, consuming your computer’s processing power, bandwidth, and memory. If your PC is taking longer than normal to start or programs are taking a long time to open, then this can be a sign that your PC is infected. Try optimizing your system first with this article.
2. Unrecognized programs and processes are running
If you notice that a strange processes are running, you may want to search and identify each of them using google search. You can identify them with a utility called Windows Task Manager or in Mac OS. This lets you see each specific process and applications that are running on your system.
3. Unexpected pop-up ads are coming up
Constantly having pop-up ads appear in your web browser might mean that a malicious program got installed onto your computer. Cybercriminals use these ads to earn money through dishonest advertising and to install malware on computers. Never click on a suspicious pop-up or allow it to lure you into taking action. For example, it may ask you to pay for a program to remove a virus but may in fact do the opposite.
4. Excessive hard drive activity
An excessively active hard disk when not using your computer can be a sign your PC is infected with a virus. Keep you eye on the flashing hard drive light on the front of your computer. In addition keep your ears open for hard drive clicking sounds.
5. Web browser redirects websites
If your web browser is going to websites that you did not request, then you might have malware installed on your computer. Cybercriminals use this type of malware to earn money through advertising that pay them to send traffic to specific sites and for other scams.
6. Anti-virus software stopped working
Some viruses are designed to disable your computer’s anti-malware protection. Having your anti-virus software stop working for no apparent reason can indicate your computer is under attack. Malware does this as a self-preservation tactic. In other words, the malware is trying to ensure that it is in control over your system and that nothing will prevent it from doing so.
7. High network utilization
If your LAN or internet connection is very active even when you’re not using it, malware may be busy sending information back and forth through this connection. Quite often there are also unneeded opened ports on your computer firewall or router.
8. Files are deleted or encrypted
Some malware may delete and or encrypt your data files so that you no longer have access, until you pay a ransom fee. Don’t lose your files. See our article on maintaining proper data backups.
9. Computer crashes and getting error messages
If programs don’t start or they close automatically, your system freezes or shuts down randomly or your getting error messages, then you may have a virus infection.
10. Your contacts receiving emails you did not send
If your contacts start receiving emails luring them to click on an attachment or link, it’s likely that a virus is attempting to spread via your contacts address book. If this happens change your passwords immediately. Your email account may be hijacked. They usually do this to carry out email phishing attacks to spread malware.
Do you have any of the symptoms?
If so, run various malware scans to remove malware. Then set the software to automatically scan your system on a regular basis and keep it up-to-date to protect against the most recent threats. Make sure that your computer firewall is turned on to block malware attacks and that you have a good router firewall.
Do You Suspect Your Computer Is Infected?
If you suspect your computer might be infected with malware, contact us for help. We can thoroughly examine your computer and remove any malware that is found. We proactively monitor computers and networks.
If you have any questions on cyber security or any other topic please call our office at (732) 702-5400. Pro-Tech can come to your business or home and assist you with computer security planning, implementation, as well as other services. Please see our website homepage for other services we offer.