How to know if you have a virus
In the last few years, we’ve witnessed explosive growth in computer viruses and e-mail worms. Despite the fact that most users run some form of anti-virus software, there is no end in sight. In fact, today’s viruses are sophisticated and difficult to trace, especially those that act like Trojan horses, taking full control of unsuspecting computers and their Internet connections in order to send e-mail, distribute software and other annoying and illegal activities. We’re certain you’re taking all the precautions. You’ve installed anti-virus software, you update it regularly, you’ve turned off file sharing and you never, ever open suspicious e-mails. But, you’re experiencing problems with your computer. Is it possible you’ve contracted a virus? In a word, yes. If you’re lucky, your anti-virus software alerts you that a virus is present. The majority of viruses are subtle, and these are often the more destructive. To help, we’ve compiled the following list of possible symptoms you can look for to determine if a virus may be present:
— You cannot boot up. Or, the computer starts to boot, but then crashes before completing the start-up.- The computer suddenly runs very slowly.- The system spontaneously reboots for no apparent reason.- Programs you used to run with no problem stop working properly.- Much or all of your free space on your hard drive is gone.- Scandisk reports multiple serious disk errors.
– There seems to be a lack of physical RAM memory.- Files appear to be moving, changing size or doing other suspicious activities.- The anti-virus software is suddenly disabled and you cannot restart it.- You’re unable to install anti-virus software or other programs.- You notice new icons on your desktop that you did not put there.
– Your friends alert you that they’ve received e-mails from you with suspicious attachments (that you didn’t send).- You receive a continuous stream of message or dialog boxes.If you have at least one of these symptoms, you may have a virus. If your computer is infected, use the anti-virus program. If you’re uncomfortable doing this yourself, turn off your computer and get help from someone who knows how to remove viruses. Above all, don’t panic. Most viruses can be removed without permanent damage to your system.For additional help, stop by The Computer Store or e-mail email@example.com.
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