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FAQ - Virus
  What is a computer virus?
Executable files or the system areas of hard and floppy disks and then making copies of itself. Viruses usually operate without the knowledge or desire of the computer user.
  What kind of files can spread viruses?
Viruses have the potential to infect any type of executable code, not just the files that are commonly called 'program files'. For example, some viruses infect executable code in the boot sector of floppy disks or in
system areas of hard drives. Another type of virus, known as a 'macro' virus, can infect word processing and spreadsheet documents that use macros. And it's possible for HTML documents containing JavaScript or other types of executable code to spread viruses or other malicious code.
  How do viruses spread?
When you execute program code that's infected by a virus, the virus code will also run and try to infect other programs, either on the same computer or on other computers connected to it over a network

When you share a copy of an infected file with other computer users, running the file may also infect their computers; and files from those computers may spread the infection to yet more computers.
  What do viruses do to computers?
Viruses are software programs, and they can do the same things as any other programs running on a computer. The actual effect of any particular virus depends on how it was programmed by the person who wrote the virus.
Some viruses are deliberately designed to damage files or otherwise interfere with your computer's operation, while others don't do anything but try to spread themselves around. But even the ones that just spread themselves are harmful, since they damage files and may cause other problems in the process of spreading.
  What is a Trojan horse program?
A type of program that is often confused with viruses is a 'Trojan horse' program. This is not a virus, but simply a program (often harmful) that pretends to be something else.

For example, you might download what you think is a new game; but when you run it, it deletes files on your hard drive. Or the third time you start the game, the program E-mails your saved passwords to another person.
  What can I do to reduce the chance of getting viruses from E-mail?
Treat any file attachments that might contain executable code as carefully as you would any other new files: save the attachment to disk and then check it with an up-to-date virus scanner before opening the file.

If your E-mail or news software has the ability to automatically execute JavaScript, Word macros, or other executable code contained in or attached to a message, we strongly recommend that you disable this feature.

If an executable file shows up unexpectedly attached to an E-mail, you should delete it unless you can positivelyverify what it is, who it came from, and why it was sent to you.

Just because an E-mail appears to come from someone you trust, this does NOT mean the file is safe or that the supposed sender had anything to do with it.
  How do I know if my computer is infected by a virus?
The best way to know this is to use a good, updated antivirus program to scan your system thoroughly.

There are other signs that can be symptomatic of a virus infection in a computer: general slowdown, files and/or information disappear, peripheral devices don't function properly etc.
  What can I do to protect myself against viruses?
The solution is to install a good antivirus with daily updates and excellent tech support services.

It is also important to be well informed about how viruses infect and spread and to take the precautions necessary.
  What effects can viruses have?
Viruses have a wide range of effects, from complete destruction of all information on a computer to running small joke programs with little or no damaging effects.
  What is the main virus entry point?
The Internet is currently the main virus entry point. This is due to the enormous possibilities it offers for exchanging information (e-mail, browsing web pages, file download, chats, newsgroups, etc) which it turns make the mass proliferation of viruses possible.
  What should I do if I receive a suspicious e-mail?
The first thing to do is simple: don't open it. Then scan it with a good, updated antivirus.
  Why are there more viruses and infections every day?
The main reason is that every day, more and more users are interconnected via the Internet or other networks, which creates a major channel for the spread of viruses.

Virus programmers are also using ever more sophisticated techniques to create viruses and more cunning ploys to trick users. Similarly, vulnerabilities in commonly used software are now being exploited frequently by virus authors as a means of spreading malicious code.
  Some general tips on avoiding virus infections
1. Install anti-virus software from a well-known, reputable company,
UPDATE it regularly, and USE it regularly.

2. Scan any new programs or other files that may contain executable code before you run or open them, no matter where they come from. There have been cases of commercially programs spreading virus nfections.

3. If your E-mail or news software has the ability to automatically execute JavaScript, Word macros, or other executable code contained in or attached to a message, we strongly recommend that you disable this feature.

4. Do regular backups. Some viruses and Trojan horse programs will erase or corrupt files on your hard drive, and a recent backup may be the only way to recover your data.
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