We are in this modern era of the internet, where each and every day every person’s life revolves in and around the web. But we need to be aware of a few threats to not only us but also our data and devices.
What are these threats?
These are nothing but essentially some malicious software, alternatively known as malware. These codes might seem harmless at first, but they have the capacity to brick your device. Not only this but you are also at the threat of revealing your sensitive and personal information because of them.
How to protect yourself from it?
There are multiple ways to protect yourself from the different types of malware (more on this later in this article).
What is malware?
The term Malware is an umbrella term for Malicious Software. Malware owes its origin to a few coders playing harmless pranks at each other. After a little while the same train of thought was taken over by people wanting to harm others. To earn money either by infiltrating your privacy or by stealing your data in illegal ways.
What malware can do includes :
- Gathering sensitive information
- Disrupting/bricking the operation of your computer
- Gain illicit access to private network systems
- Impersonate you (user) to send fake and spam messages
Types of Malware
- Viruses – If a particular malware is programmed to multiply itself, it is known as a virus. This means that this type of malware will reproduce as a means to spread. And within the code that is hidden in this virus they can not only make the device slow, but also render unusable.
- Worms – Worms are similar to viruses but differ in the fact that they replicate without targeting specific files. It is a standalone software which mainly targets the operating system. They work until the drives they get installed in become completely void of data.
- Trojan Horses – The name for this virus has been derived from the ancient Greek story used to invade Troy. Similarly, this type of malware misrepresents itself as a legitimate program. Trojan horse payload is usually a backdoor that allows attackers to gain access to the infected computer.
- Rootkits – Rootkits are specialized programs coded to gather the sensitive information from your device. These software work like a back door for different types of malware to enter and gain access. They are now being used extensively by hackers to infect systems.
- Ransomware – Ransomware malware is designated to be one of the most dangerous of the lot. What ransomware malware does is it blocks the access to your data on your device. You are returned access only when you pay a particular amount of ransom to release it. This can be termed as the new-age kidnapping of data.
- Keyloggers – This is a peculiar malicious tool which records the logs of the keystrokes on your keyboard.
- Grayware – These are not exactly malware programs, but neither are these useful. They hog-up on the important computer resources and reduce the performance of the system. This can also lead to security risks.
How to know if a site has got malware in it?
The primary source of malicious software entering your device is through the internet. While browsing on chrome, or equivalent web browsers you might visit a variety of websites. And these websites may house some of these dangerous codes.
For such scenarios there is a tool called Google Malware Checker. This tool tells you if a particular site has got any malware in it or not.
What is Google Malware Checker?
Google Malware Checker is a tool devised by Google themselves to warn people against cyberattacks. This can be either used as a plug-in in your Chrome/Chromium based web browsers. This is a not-so-resource intensive tool.
This is a completely free to use solution which does not require you to log-in or enter any personal details.
All you gotta do is to copy and paste the URL/domain of the site for which you want to check. You can then click on the blue submit button. It will open up a new tab, where the Google algorithm will work and tell if the site is safe to use or not.
To stay safe in this world of the internet is really important and this is just a little part of the whole.