A virus infected computer can be a complete nightmare!
Many people have absolutely no idea that they have a computer virus infection, until it is too late, and the damage is already done! Several HUGE mistakes made by computer users include: having no antivirus software installed at all, having out of date antivirus software installed, or having antivirus software installed without proper education on detecting and preventing viruses! Ladies and gentleman, the year is 2011, and more complex, socially engineered (“easy to fool you”) computer viruses are making their way from a hackers workstation, into your cherished home computer! These new types of malware can be difficult to detect by even “high-grade” antivirus software, and when detected can be virtually impossible to remove; while wiping out your priceless music, pictures, videos and documents – instantly! It is becoming increasingly more important, to learn how to identify a possible computer virus infection, before any major damage is done. Let’s take a look at the top 26 signs of a virus infected computer:
- Antivirus software indicates that there is a virus infection on the computer (obvious isn’t it!)
- The computer restarts randomly and unexpectedly
- The computer will not boot into Windows even though no software was installed or updates were performed
- Windows task manager will not open
- Windows does not startup, and a message is shown stating: “…system files are missing.”
- “Low memory” errors pop up even if there is no memory true memory problem
- You get random BSODs (Blue Screen Of Death)
- Your computer seems to “move” very slowly, and your task manager may indicate high CPU usage, even when you are running no programs at all (i.e. 100% CPU usage)
- The computer’s starting or loading time to get into Windows takes excessively long.
- Constant pop-ups are appearing and/or browser re-directs (being unintentionally directed to other web sites than those that you selected)
- People are receiving emails that you don’t recall sending
- Your broadband modem is showing traffic activity, when you aren’t using the internet
- When new programs are installed, they either don’t work or have constant problems
- You are suddenly receiving more spam to your email inbox(s)
- Programs that are installed are instantly deleted
- Documents and files disappear (deleted)
- Windows updates will not install successfully
- DVD and CD-Rom drives open and close by themselves, or may not be detected in Windows
- Sounds may play randomly, from the computer speakers
- Files and folders will not open at all
- Windows Security Center has been disabled
- Windows Firewallor third party firewall software has been disabled
- Instead of logging into the desktop with icons after the Windows “splash screen”, the computer just shows a black screen and a cursor
- Windows password(s) have been changed without the user(s) making the changes
- Software, files, pictures, music, video etc; start to open/run without the user commanding those actions.
- A computer will not boot up after powering on. (rare cases – “Boot virus”)
There are more symptoms associated with computer virus infections, but it is important to recognize important clues that could spell complete digital disaster! If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed and you aren’t sure if your computer is infected or not, always call a knowledgeable technician for assistance; it’s better safe than sorry! Now that you know the clues to look for, to determine if you have a virus infected computer, you are one step closer to browsing the internet, checking email, sharing files and folders and more, without worry!
Yes, but not necessarily there yet…be sure to check out the next article in this series titled: “How To Remove Computer Virus Infections Like The Pros!”