Does my device have a virus?

“Computer virus” is often used to describe all the different types of malware. But how can you know if your device has a virus or malware? Find out below.

The types of malware differ. Some are meant to be detected, whereas others are intended to stay hidden. But even the hidden ones can sometimes leave signs.

What to look for in Mac and Windows computers

A common myth is that malware is only a problem for computers running on Windows operating system. While it’s less common, Macs can be affected as well. You can look for these symptoms on both operating systems:

  • Programs or internet slow down
  • Excessive freezing and crashing
  • Emergence of unknown ads, popups, or files
  • Browser changing the home page, unknown toolbars
  • Unknown sent messages or emails
  • Windows appearing and vanishing immediately

Unfortunately, these signs aren’t always a clear indication of malware infection. There are many other possible reasons for your computer acting up. Just like a headache can be a sign of sickness, dehydration, muscle tension or other problems.

Mobile devices aren’t safe either

Web criminals are where the users are. Luckily, an Android device or an iPhone won’t encounter a traditional computer virus. But there are other types of malware they have to deal with. Signs of malware infection can be ambiguous on mobile devices too. Look for these symptoms to detect an Android or iPhone virus infection:

  • Strange and unwanted apps
  • Data drain
  • Apps or operating system crashes
  • Ads popping up
  • Odd charges in your phone or credit card bill
  • Bank authentication suspiciously slow

Even though it’s rare, it is possible for an iOS device to have malware. Especially if you download apps from unofficial appstores.

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