Viruses, worms, Trojans, and bots are all part of a software called "malware." Malware stands for "malicious software," also known as malicious code or "malcode." Besides these, Cyber stalking, Intellectual property theft, Salami attack, e-Mailbombing, Phishing, Identity theft, Spoofing etc are some of the commonly used malware.
Virus is created and used to create and exploit vulnerabilities in computers in order to have unauthorized control and illegal access remotely. These are the malicious programs spread across the computers and networks and cause potential damages from corrupting software to ruining stored data. Computer virus spreads itself through removable media, downloads and attachments with e-mails and creates multiple copies of itself in the targeted system without the user’s knowledge.
Virus is required to be executed at least once to create its multiple copies and attaches itself with system files to initiate the replication process. A Worm is capable of replicating itself and does not require human efforts to cause damages. It sends multiple copies of its own computer-to-computer and does not attach itself with system files. Trojan Horse is malicious code but looks as legitimate. It does not replicate itself and spreads across the network with human efforts such as opening e-mail, downloading a file and installing software. Indeed, virus, worm and Trojan Horse follow different approaches in their replication but work for common objectives.
These common objectives are as follows:
- Generating irritating messages and popping up windows
- Deleting, modifying, renaming, hiding and replacing stored files
- Depleting attached resources such as drives storages and network bandwidth
- Overloading the whole network
- Vulnerabilities creation and exploitation
- Transferring controls to remote computers and criminals
- Disrupting control and security settings
- Damaging computer attached hardware resources
- Damaging network resources
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