What are Computer Viruses?

Viruses

In modern times, most people are aware to one degree or another of computer viruses. But exactly what are computer viruses?

Viruses are essentially computer programs written to cause harm and damage your computer. Viruses have the ability to open normal programs, files or documents, and copy themselves or parts of themselves into them.

When you access an infected program, file or document, you also activate the virus program without knowing that you are doing so. Some viruses lodge themselves into the memory of your computer, and access files every time you or your computer opens a document.

What happens when you open a program or document infected by a virus? That depends on what the virus is designed to do. Some erase files, some erase parts of files, some are designed to damage your computer operating system, and some are designed to simply fill your computer with unwanted garbage – making it impossible to operate your it.

Whatever a virus is designed to do, one thing is clear: you do not want one in your computer or on your network.

Because today’s computer programs have become more and more complex, allowing more and more automated functions, there is an increased opportunity to create harmful code (“code” is a term used to describe a set of instructions for the computer to follow, written in computer programming language).

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