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A Guide to the 9 Most Terrifying Malware Threats

9 Most Terrifying Malware Threats

Years ago, you didn’t have to think too much about malware threats. You might have been at risk if you borrowed a floppy disc from someone, but you probably just installed antivirus software to protect your computer.

However, things have changed. Computer hacking has turned into a lucrative profession. Unfortunately, the internet has made it easy for people to access the knowledge and tools for hacking. Computer hacking criminals are ruthless.

We see cyber-attacks on businesses daily. For those who are well protected, we see the attempted attacks occurring all the time as we monitor the businesses we look after. We also have business owners come to us, seeking our services after they have experienced an attack. The consequences can be devastating.

It’s vital that you are aware of the different ways your business is being targeted. That’s why we have put together a guide to the nine most terrifying malware threats.

1. Viruses

Viruses can attack in several ways. Like that of a human virus, they spread through your computer system and infect files and either delete or reformat them.

They make it difficult to perform the simplest of tasks, as they often replicate themselves or flood networks. How can you clean up the damage from a virus? This varies, in some cases quarantining files may help but, in many cases, affected files must be deleted and you may have to rebuild your computer from scratch. Imagine the devastation caused by this on your data, especially if you haven’t got a backup of anything.

2. Worms

Worms have been around for a while and usually work by a person opening an infected email. They work effectively because no action needs to be taken for them to spread. They can be extremely powerful and unstoppable in some cases.

3. Trojans

Trojans, named after the Ancient Greek story of Trojan horses, have become the new weapon of choice by hackers. This has replaced the use of worms in attacks. Trojans usually arrive in an email attachment or can be on an infected website.

Trojans are usually triggered by human error as someone opens an infected email, making them difficult to defend against. This is where cyber security training in your team is vital. Awareness is vital

4. Hybrids

A hybrid is a mix of viruses, worms and trojans. Yes, it’s as bad as it sounds! The clean-up from hybrids can be incredibly difficult to achieve.  

Trojans are usually triggered by human error as someone opens an infected email, making them difficult to defend against. This is where cyber security training in your team is vital. Awareness is vital

5. Ransomware

Ransomware has become ever more popular among cyber criminals. And businesses are the prime targets. This malware works by encrypting data and holding it hostage until you pay a ransom fee for the data to be freed.

Most ransomware is a trojan and is triggered by accident. Unfortunately, this type of attack is very difficult to clean up and recover from. Backups are one way of limiting the damage of this attack, but so much can be at risk- including your business reputation.

6. Fileless Malware

Although this isn’t a different category, it does pose a real threat to your business. Fileless malware makes up about half of all malware attacks currently. This type of attack is very difficult to find and stop as it doesn’t rely on files to spread and infect as ‘traditional’ malware does. Instead, it concentrates on memory or other fileless parts of your computer operating system.

7. Adware

Adware occurs when you click on a pop-up. Afterwards, software is installed on your computer without your express permission. Although it’s more annoying than it is dangerous, it can slow computers down and can make them more vulnerable to other malware attacks

8. Malvertising

Malvertising is malware hidden behind advertising. This is when a computer criminal pays to have an advert on a genuine website. When the ad is clicked on, malware is installed onto your device. Scarily, a click isn’t even necessary, and a drive-by download attack can occur.

9. Spyware

Spyware works by monitoring the websites you visit, everything you type and other information about you and what you use your device for. That way, your login info and passwords can be found. This can be simpler to remove, but costly if you’ve already given away valuable information.

Spyware is activated after you have clicked on something, such as a pop-up or notification. A simple, but costly mistake.

Get your easy to read guide to the 9 most terrifying types of malware

Download our PDF guide here to read up on this in more detail.

How can you protect yourself from the 9 most terrifying malware threats?

As you can see, forms of malware range all the way from an inconvenience to your business all the way to potential bankruptcy. Let’s not forget the damage in reputation your business can take if your data is exposed.

Although we don’t want to scare you completely, one thing you can take away from this is that all businesses are being targeted by hackers, all the time. Awareness is one vital thing you can achieve right away to help limit the damage from cyberattacks. 

The second thing you can do is to source an IT partner who works proactively to protect your business form cybercriminals.

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