What is a Malware

A malware (aka.  Malicious software) is a program designed with malicious intentions (Malicious software that wants to steal, destroy or corrupt the data stored on our devices).

Most people use the generic term virus, which is not necessarily correct because there can be many types of dangerous programs. Below is (only) a part of these:

  1. viruses
  2. Trojans
  3. Worms
  4. Ransomware
  5. spyware
  6. adware

In the image below, extracted from Wikipedia, the proportion (in 2011) of Internet malware. Since then and so many things have changed or changed, but it is interesting that we have such a hierarchy with the most common types of malware.

And now let's take a few of this malware and discuss in more detail about them:

1) Viruses

A virus is a program that we are all used to. Whether we have had the computer infected with a virus or heard/seen someone else, we know that these viruses can be really dangerous to us (and especially to our data stored on the computer - the most important element for us).

Virus developers take advantage of existing vulnerabilities on different operating systems (especially Windows) and write software that takes advantage of them (and the users of these devices).

2) Trojan

A Trojan is a type of program designed to appear for the benefit of the user, but at the back, there is a malicious code that has completely different intentions. These types of programs are most commonly found on the Internet (as you can see in the image above) and are used because they are easy to mask in front of an inexperienced user.

Thus, at the time (first) of running the program, the Trojan is installed and will hide, doing its job "quietly". The term Trojan comes from the story of the Trojan horse in Greek mythology, exposed in the movie Troy.

3) Worms

A worm ( worm ) is a form of malware that once infects a device (PC, laptop, server, etc.) will do its best to spread and infect others in the network. Thus a worm manages to slow down the devices connected to the network (through the consumption of CPU and RAM resources) and even the network because the infected computers will generate an abnormal traffic consumption.

4) Ransomware

An increasingly popular type of malware lately is ransomware, the purpose of which is to encrypt the victims' hard drive (or SSD) and demand a ransom in its money for the decryption key.

5) Adware

There are programs that once installed on a device (or browser) will start displaying (annoying) advertisements.

6) Spyware

These are programs designed to extract certain data from users. They are not intended to make it difficult (through resource consumption) or to affect the victim in any way, but simply to extract data and send it to the "mother servers" (those who initiated the "espionage").

Malware summary

What is malware?

A malware (aka.  Malicious software ) is a program designed with malicious intentions (aka. Malicious software that wants to steal, destroy or corrupt the data stored on our devices).

How many types can malware be?

Some of the most common types of malware include: 
1) Viruses 
2) Trojans 
3) Worms 
4) Ransomware 
5) Adware 
6) Spyware

How can you protect yourself from malware?

Using cybersecurity best practice techniques: 
1) Use anti-virus / anti-malware software 
2) Do not click suspicious sites or links on websites or email 
3) Pay attention to what Wi-Fi networks Be connected to the sensitivity of the data you work with 
4) If you have the opportunity, use a VPN software to secure your Internet connection

Cybersecurity Expert, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), and Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)

"Speed and simplicity: these are the keywords to overcome the enemy."