Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Malware Red Flags - (Part 1 of 2)

If any of the following things happen to your PC, just be sure that your antivirus and anti malware software are currently updated and use both to run complete scans.
The following terms below are the things you should be aware of when a malware occurs.
  • Homepage Hijack - If your browser's homepage suddenly changes and you didn't authorize the change, it usally means a malware programmer has hi-jacked it. If this happens, run a complete anti-virus and anti-malware scan, reset your homepage to your liking, and see if it sticks. (You can typically find the homepage setting in your browser's Option settings.)
  • Unidentifed browser toolbars and bookmarks - Sometimes, if you install a software, it asks if you want to install a browser toolbar, but malware programmer can also deliver their software through an unauthorized toolbar installation. Malware programmers use browser exploits or illegitimate software to load unauthorized bookmarks or favorites into your browser and once you click on them would load a site that installs additional malware. Hiding or deleting these toolbars is ineffective because the malware that put them there still lurks on the computer.
  • Strange search results - If your default search provider changes from what you're used to seeing to something else particularly if that something else isn't a major search site such as Google or Yahoo, there's the possibility, you're a victim of browser hijacking.
(to be continued)