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The Central Computer Center provides Anti-virus & Spam Protection at the server and the gateway level for PC's, laptops, email and web services. Additionally, all PCs, laptops in the University and campus that have been provided with connectivity of window update server that updates antivirus automatically on daily basis.


More About Viruses .............

What is Computer Virus?

A computer virus is a program that explicitly copies itself. This may lead to it spreading from machine to machine and is typically done without the user's knowledge or permission. Viruses, by definition, add their code to your system in such a way that when the infected part of the system executes, the virus does also.

Types of viruses :

• Boot viruses place (some of) their code in the disk sector whose code the machine will automatically execute when booting. Thus, when an infected machine boots, the virus loads and runs. After boot viruses are finished loading, they usually load the original boot code, which they have previously moved to another location, or take other measures to ensure the machine appears to boot normally.
• File viruses attach to 'program files' (files containing executable or interpretable code) in such a way that when you run the infected program, the virus code executes. Usually the virus code is added in such a way that it executes first, although this is not strictly necessary. After the virus code has finished loading and executing, it will normally load and execute the original program it has infected, or call the function it intercepted, so as to not arouse the user's suspicion.
• Macro viruses are really just a type of file virus, but a particularly 'successful' type. They copy their macros to templates and/or other application document files. Although 'auto macros' were almost exclusively used by early macro viruses (often to ensure the virus' code is the first to execute when infected templates or documents were opened), several other mechanisms are also available - in fact, some of these, such as taking over standard internal functions of the host application (say the 'File Save' command) and installing default event handlers are probably more commonly used these days.
• Script viruses also became quite successful around the beginning of this century. This was mainly due to the increase in machines running Windows Scripting Host, which was first installed by default in Windows 98 and 2000 and with Internet Explorer 5.0 and later versions. Representing new types of 'program file', but with icons more like that of 'safe' text files, standalone Visual Basic Script (VBS) and JavaScript (JS) programs became a popular target of the writers of mass mailing viruses.
• Companion viruses take advantage of features of the operating system to be executed, rather than directly infecting programs or boot sectors. Under DOS and Windows, when you execute the command 'ABC', the rule is that ABC.COM executes before ABC.EXE (in the rare cases where both files exist). Thus, a companion virus could place its code in a COM file with its first name matching that of an existing EXE file. When the user next executed the 'ABC' command, the virus' ABC.COM program would be run (usually the virus would launch ABC.EXE once its code was finished so as not to arouse suspicion). This is known as the 'execution preference companion' method, but several other forms of companion infection are also possible.


How do viruses spread?

When you execute program code that's infected by a virus, the virus code will also run and try to infect other programs, either on the same computer or on other computers connected to it over a network . And the newly infected programs will try to infect yet more programs.

When you share a copy of an infected file with other computer users, running the file may also infect their computers; and files from those computers may spread the infection to yet more computers.

If your computer is infected with a boot sector virus, the virus tries to write copies of itself to the system areas of floppy disks and hard disks.Then the infected floppy disks may infect other computers that boot from them, and the virus copy on the hard disk will try to infect still more floppies.

Some viruses, known as 'multipartite' viruses, can spread both by infecting files and by infecting the boot areas of floppy disks.

Some general tips on avoiding virus infections

There are a number of simple precautions you can take to keep your digital personal information secure:

• Without harping on the subject - keep your antivirus up to date and protect yourself from trojans!
• If you must store personal information on your machine, encrypt it.
• Use strong passwords, that is:
      -> do not use passwords that are based on words you can find in the dictionary
      -> do not use consecutive numbers or letters
      -> do use both upper and lowercase letters
      -> do use a combination of both letters and numbers
      -> do try to ensure that your passwords are a minimum of 6-8 characters long
      -> do not write your passwords down if you can help it, but if you must, do not leave them on or near the
          computer(and certainly not under the keyboard!)
• Keep your operating system and applications up to date and patched against the latest discovered
  vulnerabilities.
• Do not run files that are sent to you, unless you are completely sure of their integrity.
• Do not click on hyperlinks from people you don't know.
• Install a firewall application, particularly if your Internet connection is always on (such as with DSL).
• Ensure that the browser you use supports security and is capable of encrypting information that you may send.
• If you are getting rid of an old machine, ensure that you have wiped the hard disk (using a wiping utility)
  deleting the files is not precaution enough.
• Read website security and privacy policies.

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