Malicious programs are developed by cybercriminals to obtain confidential information or damage your computer. You may have noticed that your computer is running slowly, your browser home page has changed, incomprehensible toolbars are installed, or a lot of pop-up windows are opening. Even if you have an antivirus program installed and running, your computer may still be infected with malware or viruses. Follow these steps to scan your computer and remove malware.
Method 1 of 4: Types of Malware
Step 1. Viruses, Trojans, worms, spyware and bots are types of malware that can damage your system
- A Trojan is a program that disguises itself as a regular program in order to be downloaded. It then activates and can delete files and steal data or give unauthorized access to your system.
- The rootkit can be installed along with other programs. It can hide on a computer and avoid standard detection tools. An attacker can then modify your programs and gain access to your information.
- A bot (or botnet) is an automated computer program. An attacker gains control of a computer or network and can spread a virus or spam. Your personal information can be changed and your computer can attack other computers on the network by sending spam emails.
- The worm usually does not damage files on your computer, but it can take up a huge amount of hard disk space, slowing it down. It spreads very quickly over the network and can access your email address book by spreading to all your contacts.
- Spyware includes Trojans and Cookies. It usually doesn't spread over networks, but it can disable antivirus software and cause other problems.
- Adware is adware that opens unwanted pop-ups and can lead to other troubles.
Method 2 of 4: Preventing Malware from Appearing
Step 1. Reduce the risk of malware infecting your computer with a good antivirus program
Update your anti-virus databases regularly, as new viruses appear constantly. Also install an anti-rootkit.
Step 2. Use different passwords
Use different passwords in different applications. Always include a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols in passwords.
Never select the "remember password" option
Step 3. Use a firewall on your computer
A firewall can prevent an attack on your computer.
Method 3 of 4: Installing dedicated antivirus software
Step 1. Download an anti-malware program
The antivirus program installed on your computer may have missed viruses. Therefore, install a special anti-malware program.
- Malwarebytes is an excellent anti-malware program. It's free and easy to use. Download it from: malwarebytes.org/products/malwarebytes_free/
- HitmanPro can remove rootkits. Download it from: surfright.nl/en/downloads.
- Kaspersky offers a special anti-rootkit program and you can download it from: kaspersky.com/downloads/tdsskiller.
Step 2. Download these programs on another computer and save them to a flash drive if you cannot connect to the Internet
Method 4 of 4: Remove Malware
Step 1. Make a backup copy of all files and data on your computer before starting the deletion procedure
You can then restore them if you have to reinstall the operating system. Do not make backup copies of programs and system files, as they can be infected. Back up your device drivers. The DoubleDriver utility is suitable for this: pcworld.com/article/231765/double_driver.html. Also, save your emails.
Step 2. Disconnect your computer from the Internet
Step 3. First, check your computer normally
However, some types of malware may prevent you from doing this.
Step 4. Test your computer in Safe Mode with Networking
- Restart your computer and press the F8 key several times (if you have Windows). Remember that you must press this key before you see the Windows logo.
- In the boot menu that opens, select "Safe Mode with Loading Network Drivers".
Step 5. Delete temporary files using the Disk Cleanup utility
Open it by clicking Start-All Programs-Accessories-System Tools-Disk Cleanup. This can speed up the scanning process.
Step 6. Scan your computer with the special program that you installed
If your antivirus detects viruses or malware, follow the instructions to remove them.
Step 7. Perform a full scan of your computer with an ordinary anti-virus
This may take 60 minutes or more.
- If you still have problems after scanning with your antivirus, you may need to reinstall Windows to remove a deep-rooted virus or malware.
- Check the home page before launching your web browser. Click Start-Control Panel-Internet Options. If you do not know this home page, your computer is still infected.
- After removing malware, you might need to fix the registry. Registry cleaning programs (CCleaner is a popular freeware) can help with this task.