How to Tell the Difference between Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware Tools

People are wiser nowadays when it comes to taking care of their computers. In fact, most computers come with software for protecting the device.Because there are different kinds of threats that can corrupt the computer and compromise its data, there are also different kinds of software or tools which can combat these malicious applications.It is one thing to download or install various tools to protect your device and ultimately, your information. But the key to the effectiveness of these tools lies on their proper usage. After all, no matter how advanced or expensive the software is, it will still be rendered useless when aimed at the wrong target.Knowing the Difference between the Different Sorts of Computer ThreatsEven though viruses, worms, Trojans, and malware have been around for quite some time now, there are still a lot of people who do not know the difference between these threats.The number one key to dodging or combating these unwarranted risks is to know what they are and what they can do to your computer.


Viruses are specifically designed in such a way that it replicates and spreads, thus named after its medical counterpart. Malware, on the other hand, is more of a general term which refers to all kinds of malicious or wanted codes. As such, a malware can include spyware, Trojans, viruses, worms, nagware, and adware.Among these types of malware, viruses, worms, and Trojans are more commonly used by cyber hackers. That is why majority of security IT companies are keener to market and produce tools for these specific kinds of malware and have taken into calling their inventions as Antivirus.Still there are other companies who also call their applications Antimalware. But as malware is a general term, the name Antimalware is quite vague because it does not state which kind of malware it was made for.When a program is Antivirus, it targets a computer threat which copies and spreads itself from one computer file to another and ultimately extends its damage from one computer to another through copied or shared files.Majority of computer viruses lodge into executable documents or files. However, the more malicious ones can zero in on master boot records, MS Office macros, auto run scripts, and even arbitrary files. Once a computer has been hit with a virus, it almost instantaneously becomes inoperable while corrupting or deleting files. Viruses are computer fiends which were especially designed to wreak havoc on your device.


Innocuous and dismissible, that’s how Trojans look at first glance. Trojan horses are misleading applications because they reel users to open doors for malicious codes to creep in and enable third-party control of one’s device.Unlike viruses, Trojan horses do not replicate themselves. It must be installed by the user first and when it lodges into the device, remote control from one computer or a network of computers which are also infected starts up.An affected computer can be controlled to send spam and other degenerate functions like DoS or denial of service.Like antiviruses, the software for combating Trojans must always be up to date.SPYWAREAs its name indicates, a spyware scouts for information from its infected computer and sends it back to the creator of this malicious software.Spywares can collect passwords or credit card and bank details and can also function by learning another user’s searching activities, altering search pages or browser homes, or adding browser tool bars.A computer infected with a spyware application may not disrupt but it will run extremely slowly. Creators of this software do not intent to mess up a computer but to make money out of the information the spyware steals.


A relatively new tactic of attack from cyber criminals, a scareware tricks people into downloading this software masking as an antivirus program that tells its victims their computer is infected with a myriad of viruses and can only be salvaged by paying for the full license version of the “antivirus” program.This kind of malware holds your computer hostage by rendering it as inoperable until you pay the price it demands. Its creators made sure to tie loose ends by making the malicious program impossible to uninstall.


Worms are oftentimes mistaken as viruses. It works by sending copies of itself through networks by using security holes to be transmitted from one host to another.Computer worms attack network vulnerabilities and can be deterred partially by enabling and locking down firewalls.By knowing the tactics of these malicious computer malwares and distinguishing one from another, computer users are able to understand what to expect when their device is at risk or already infected. This way, they’re able to select the appropriate protection to use.

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