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What is Antivirus Software? Do I Need It?

Antivirus software is used to protect your computer against malicious software (malware) like viruses and computer worms. Antivirus software will first help prevent your computer from becoming infected with various malware like Trojan horses, spyware, or adware. If any of these are on your system, antivirus software can scan your computer to detect them and then remove them from your system. It is important to get antivirus software to keep your system healthy. If you do get a virus, antivirus software will help you manage it.

Computer viruses attack an executable file on your system and spread throughout the rest. Once your computer is infected by a virus, your computer may be rendered unusable. Computer worms are similar but can spread to other computers as well. Most forms of malware can go unnoticed on your system, working quietly in the background. You cannot solely think about the safety of your computer but any other computers that share a network with you or you pass information to. Spyware programs are designed for profit. Some of the programs force your computer to send out spam messages or install a key logger that tracks a user’s keystrokes, exposing personal information like passwords or credit card numbers.

Antivirus software is the best way to protect against threats and to ensure you do not pass on threats to others. Antivirus software is necessary whether or not you download files from the internet. Viruses can infect your computers when data is transferred if you are visiting a website or opening an email attachment. Once your computer is infected with malware, it is very difficult to fix on your own, so the best method to keep your computer healthy is prevention. To prevent an infected system you need to keep your computer running updated antivirus software.

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