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Viruses, Trojans, and Worms: What’s the Difference?
There are many different types of malware, and some of the most common include viruses, Trojans, and worms. While the terms are often used interchangeably, each of these types of malware has significant differences.
A computer virus is a malicious program that can cause damage by creating, moving or erasing files. Opening an infected email attachment is the most common way for your machine to catch a computer virus.
Named after the mythological Trojan Horse, a Trojan is a malicious program which misleads users of its true intent. It is typically hidden in an email attachment or download that appears to be authentic. When the user clicks the attachment or downloads the program, the malware hidden inside is transferred to the user’s device. Once inside, a Trojan can cause damage by deleting files, stealing data, and more.
A computer worm is a program that can replicate itself and spread to other computers. While it cannot alter any files on a machine, it can cause harm consuming all of the endpoint’s available memory or disk space as it multiplies. In this case, endpoint protection software is essential as it can locate and destroy worms before they have a chance to replicate or spread to other machines.