Microsoft Security Essentials: Malicious Software FAQ

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What is a virus?

Software programs deliberately designed to interfere with normal computer operation. They can record, corrupt, or delete data and infect other computers through the Internet. The main symptom to look for, if a virus is present, is if the computer has slowed significantly.

What is Spyware?

Software that can install itself, or run, on a computer without the owner's consent. Spyware may display no symptoms after infecting a computer, but can affect how the computer runs.Spyware can monitor personal information, change personal settings or cause the computer to run slowly.

Differences between viruses and spyware?

While both are installed on a computer, without the owner's knowledge, and can both negatively affect a computer. Viruses act like a biological organism by infecting a computer and replicating themselves, then spread these replications to as many other computers as possible. Spyware, on the other hand, want to "move into" a computer and stay as long as possible, sending as much of the owner's personal information to an outside source.

Where do these types of malicious, and unwanted, software come from?

Any of these malicious types of malicious software through the Internet. Viruses usually come from visiting untrusted websites or programs that are downloaded, or installed through some type of external media. Spyware usually is installed through free software, such as file sharing, mainly by Internet.

Can I get malicious software without knowing it?

Yes! Malicious software can be installed through embedded script or program on a web site. Web pop-ups, that ask the user to download a file/program, can only be installed with the user's help. Yet if Windows is kept up to date and security settings are in no way reduced, infection chances are brought to a minimum.

Why is it important to view license agreements before installing software?

When visiting websites, do not immediately agree to download anything the site offers. If downloading anything, remember to review the licensing agreement. Look for anything that says that the user must accept advertising and pop-ups from the software company, or if the software will send certain types of information back to the software published.

What's the difference between Microsoft Security Essentials and Windows Defender?

Microsoft Security Essentials is an anti-malware program, detecting and protecting your computer from a variety of malicious software, such as viruses, spyware, and other unwanted software. Windows Defender is software, automatically installed with a Windows operating system, that detects and prohibits spyware.

Why doesn't Microsoft Security Essentials detect cookies?

Small text files, known as cookies, are put on your computer by Web sites, that allow your computer to store information about your personal preferences. Cookies allow for the computer to offer a personalized experience and obtain information about the user's Web site use. Microsoft Security Essentials does not detect cookies, because it does not consider them a threat. Cookies can be enabled and disabled by most Internet browser programs.

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7/10/2018 7:15:22 AM