What is Malware? Malware 101

Malware is a shorthand and umbrella term that describes all malicious software — or any software program that intentionally acts against the requirements of the computer user. Because of its umbrella-like designation, malware also refers to pretty much any form of hostile or intrusive software, including: computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, ransomware, spyware, adware, scareware, and so on.

While the name and application of different malware varies, each aim to do something sinister to your operating system, including damaging or disabling computers, computer systems, and mobile operations or gaining access to private computers, gathering sensitive information, and displaying unwanted advertising.

What Malware Tries to Accomplish:

  • Steal Personal Information
  • Steal Financial Information
  • Steal Business Information
  • Steal Guarded Information
  • Disrupt Operations
  • Sabotage Operations
  • Monitor Users’ Web Browsing
  • Display Unsolicited Advertisements
  • Redirect Affiliate Marketing
  • Demand Payment of Users
  • Control a Computer for Illicit Purposes

Where Malware Hides

Malware generally has a criminal purpose (rather than strictly sabotage), but it’s important to understand just how sneaky and sophisticated it can be. And, while it’s primarily found in e-mail and the via the web, malware can also be hidden and packaged with user-installed software updates and through social media scams.

The Growth of Malware

The use of malware is unfortunately growing. In 2008 it was suggested that the creation of malicious code and software was outpacing legitimate software programs, and in 2015, CNN Tech reported that “nearly 1 million new malware threats were released each day.”

Defend Your Company Against Malware

As it becomes increasingly hard for individuals and businesses to stay safe online — and as hackers become more creative — it’s more important than ever to make sure that your computer system (or network of systems) isn’t vulnerable to an attack. Defend your company’s precious data and information with Integracon’s security monitoring services. We believe in a multi-tiered approach to successful online security services, helping you thwart security breaches and data compromise, should it ever come your way.