8 Types of Computer Virus and What to Do About Them

One day, you’re using your computer with no issues. Suddenly, things start happening. Nothing is working correctly, and your computer seems to have grown a mind of its own. You sink as you realize that you’ve got a computer virus. 

It happens to the best of us, even governments. Computer viruses are incredibly stressful, especially when all of our lives are so dependent on functioning computers. 

When dealing with a virus, it’s essential to understand what you’re up against, including all the different types of computer virus that you could be facing. 

Here’s a rundown.

Types of Computer Virus

All computer viruses are different. They affect different parts of the computer to garner different results. But what is a computer virus?

Put simply, a computer virus is a malicious piece of code that can spread from host to host, infecting every computer along the way. They’re designed to change the way that your computer works. Once a virus has taken root, it can damage the system, leading to the theft, corruption, or destruction of data. 

Once you’ve got a virus, you’ll need to take some steps to rid your computer of it.  But first, let’s take a closer look at some of the most common types of computer viruses. 

1. Resident Virus

A resident virus is a type of computer virus that stores itself in the computer memory. From there, it can corrupt and alter your system operations. These viruses are one of the worst to get, as they have near-complete control over what they can access. 

They can even attach themselves to any anti-virus software you have and start attacking that.

2. Direct Action Virus

Sometimes known as a file infector virus, these viruses work by attaching themselves to .exe or .com files. Once the files have been executed or installed. 

They can use this initial file to access the other files on your computer and start spreading. Direct action viruses can hinder your ability to access files. However,  if you have a good level of computer virus protection, then your anti-virus software should be able to get rid of these easily. 

3. Multipartite Virus

Most viruses work by honing in on either executable files or the boot system. The multipartite does both. Think of this virus as having many ‘tentacles.’ They can affect nearly every part of the computer by targetting system operations, programs, or folders.

They can be challenging to get rid of without sophisticated anti-virus software. 

4. Macro Virus

Macro viruses are commonly found in programs like Word and Excel. This is because Word and Excel are written in macro language, which the virus attempts to mimic to gain access to your files. 

They’re very deceptive, as what can seem like a simple Word document. But, when you click on the document your computer will either become infected right away, or you’ll be redirected to a malicious website. 

If that wasn’t enough, these viruses could often send themselves out to others through your contact list. It’s important to get a macro virus sorted straight away.  

5. Browser Hijacker

The browser hijacker remains the least harmful virus on this list, but it can be an annoyance. 

Browser hijackers work by getting rid of the previous home screen on your browser and replacing it with a new one, often to show you advertisements. 

6. Polymorphic Virus

How do you catch something that keeps disappearing? That’s the problem with polymorphic viruses.

Most viruses have a set code, and once your anti-virus software can figure out and detect that code, it can destroy the virus. Polymorphic viruses, however, have a code that is constantly changing, making them incredibly difficult to hunt down and eradicate. 

7. Boot Sector Virus

Boot sector viruses used to be really common in the days of the floppy disk. They’re not so common now, but they do still exist. 

Boot sector viruses hang out as a file on a USB stick, external hard drive, or even an email attachment. Once activated, they latch on to the computer’s boot record and damage the system.

8. Web Scripting Virus

Web scripting viruses can be very stressful to deal with.

They work by infiltrating your web browser’s security. This can allow hackers or any other unscrupulous person with the proper knowledge to extract your data. This can lead to details of your personal or financial identity falling into the wrong hands.

What to Do About Computer Viruses

That list can seem scary, and computer virus removal can seem daunting, but there are lots of things you can do to fight against computer viruses.

The first thing to know is that early action is always easier than reaction. Having a firewall and some anti-virus software is an excellent place to start. Also, take some time to learn about viruses. When you know where and when you’re likely to come across one, you can take action needed to avoid infection. 

Of course, sometimes you just get caught cold. If you’ve got a virus that can be easily dealt with at home, then go ahead and boot up your anti-virus software and run a scan. The software will scan the entire system for signs of a virus and then eradicate any that it is capable of getting rid of.

Sometimes this isn’t possible. If you think you’ve got a more severe virus that you can’t get rid of yourself, you’ll need to take your computer to an expert to get it assessed. These companies have the know-how and experience to track down even the most evasive viruses. 

Get Professional Virus Removal Today

Viruses need dealing with promptly. If you want to take the stress out of virus removal, then you need a professional. 

At Computer Revival, we can get your device back up and running, even if you’ve suffered some of the worst types of computer virus. 

Check out our virus removal services today.