If you use the Internet, it's highly likely you're already infected with some form of malware. In addition to crippling PC performance, these attacks silently steal or destroy your data, your identity, your financial holdings and your transaction privacy.
I'm a full-time mom with a full-time career. I spend a lot of time banking and shopping online.
Recently I applied for a credit card. When my bank denied my application I was shocked - I have no outstanding debt and my credit score has always been excellent. As it turned out my identity was stolen and I was robbed. These identity thieves were running up thousands of dollars in debt under my name and it's all because I was tricked into entering my social security and banking account numbers on a fake website that posed as my bank's website. In the end, I had to spend a huge amount of time and hassle trying to recover my money and my identity.
I am the owner of a small real estate business that is rapidly growing. To help manage this growth and keep track of everything, I recently hired an office manager. She spent several days organizing and uploading all of our important data in to her new computer - including sensitive information about our employees and customers.
Recently I needed access to this data but when I tried to locate the information everything was wiped out. Without anyone's knowledge, we were the victims of an online attack that silently installed spyware, destroying all of our PC files. It was amazing how quickly we lost extremely valuable data. Most of the lost data cannot be recovered, and I am in fear about how this will affect my business and its reputation.
Browser hijackers can install dangerous spyware that can cause irreparable damage to your files and programs as well as jeopardize your personal information and identity.
I'm an avid blogger and social networker, pretty much constantly connected. I like downloading the latest photos and video clips from my friends. And I really don't pay much attention to whether it is safe. I mean, why should I? My ISP says they have the latest protection available.
Lately I've noticed my computer is really slowing down. It takes forever to boot up, and my streaming video performance is terrible. I've spent a huge amount of time troubleshooting the problem, but still can't seen get my computer back up and running properly. As it turns out I was infected by malware disguised as a video file and silently installed itself on my machine.
Malware in action can consume a substantial amount of your computer's memory, leaving limited resources for other legitimate programs to use. This can lead to extremely sluggish performance of vital programs, like your Internet browser or operating system and a slow PC overall.