A computer virus, much like a coronovirus, is designed to spread from host to host and has the ability to replicate itself.A computer viruses cannot reproduce and spread without programming such as a file or document.

A virus is a type of malicious software (malware) comprised of small pieces of code attached to legitimate programs. When that program runs, the virus runs.

Norton Symantec says ‘In more technical terms, a computer virus is a type of malicious code or program written to alter the way a computer operates and is designed to spread from one computer to another.

A virus operates by inserting or attaching itself to a legitimate program or document that supports Macro* in order to execute its code**. In the process, a virus has the potential to cause unexpected or damaging effects, such as harming the system software*** by corrupting or destroying data”.


Macro*-a single instruction that expands automatically into a set of instructions to perform a particular task.

Code**-in a general sense, is the language understood by the computer. Coding is what makes it possible for us to create computer software, apps, and websites. Your browser, your OS, the apps on your phone, Facebook, and this website – they’re all made with code. Python, Java, C, C++ are some examples of coding language.

Software***-the programs and other operating information used by a computer. Techopedia definition-Software, in its most general sense, is a set of instructions or programs instructing a computer to do specific tasks. Software is a generic term used to describe computer programs. Examples of application software include office suites, gaming applications, database systems, and educational software.

The purpose of creating a computer virus is to infect vulnerable systems, gain admin control and steal user sensitive data. Hackers design computer viruses with malicious intent and prey on online users by tricking them.

Once a virus has successfully attached to a program, file, or document, the virus will lie dormant until circumstances cause the computer or device to execute its code. In order for a virus to infect your computer, you have to run the infected program, which in turn causes the virus code to be executed.

Once the virus infects your computer, the virus can infect other computers on the same network. Stealing passwords or data, logging keystrokes, corrupting files, spamming your email contacts, and even taking over your machine are just some of the devastating and irritating things a virus can do.

One of the ideal methods by which viruses spread is through emails – opening the attachment in the email, visiting an infected website, clicking on an executable file, or viewing an infected advertisement can cause the virus to spread to your system. Besides that, infections also spread while connecting with already infected removable storage devices, such as USB drives.

A computer virus (a type of malware) comes in different forms to infect the system in different ways. Some of the most common types of viruses are, Direct Action Virus, Multipartite Virus, Overwrite Virus, Polymorphic Virus, etc

Direct Action Virus

A computer program intentionally designed to associate itself with another computer program in a way that when the original program is run, the virus program is run as well, and the virus replicates itself by attaching itself to other programs.

The primary intentions of a direct action virus is replication and to spread infection whenever the code is executed. When certain conditions have been met, the virus is set into action and begins to infect files in the directory or folder it’s located in.

Direct-action viruses load with the host program into computer memory. Upon getting control, they look for new objects to infect by searching for new files.

A direct action virus is a virus that attacks or start to work immediately this can include nonviolent and less often violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action participants.

 Direct action viruses are easy to spot and the infected files can be fully restored to their original condition.

One of the earliest detections of a direct action virus was the Rugrat, more commonly known as Win64.Rugrat.  This virus was said to the first infection written in the Intel Itanium instruction set.

A multipartite virus,a fast-moving virus, infects computer systems multiple times and at different times.

A multipartite virus is also known as a hybrid virus.The effects of a multipartite virus can be far-reaching and very damaging to a computer system.

The first multipartite virus was the Ghostball virus. It was discovered by Fridrik Skulason in 1989. In 1993, Skulason founded FRISK Software International, an Icelandic company that develops anti-virus and anti-spam services.

Overwrite virus

An overwriting virus is a malicious program which, after infection, will effectively destroy the original program code, typically by overwriting data in the system’s memory.It “writes over them” with random data.An overwrite virus actually removes the data completely.

 The virus overwrites the host program, effectively replacing the host with itself so that when something or someone tries to execute the host program the virus gets executed instead.

Overwriting viruses are extremely harmful because they actually destroy elements of a user’s system.

This Trojan virus can also restart the user’s computer, and was active in targeting Windows NT and Windows 2000 systems in the 2000s.

Polymorphic virus

Polymorphic virus (a type of malware) are complex file virus (infectors) that can create modified versions of itself to avoid detection yet retain the same basic routines after every infection. To vary their physical file makeup during each infection, polymorphic viruses encrypt their codes and use different encryption keys every time.

In simple words they constantly changes its identifiable features in order to evade detection.

A polymorphic virus is a complicated computer virus that affects data types and functions. It is a self-encrypted virus designed to avoid detection by a scanner.

The first known polymorphic virus was written by Mark Washburn. The virus, called 1260, was written in 1990. A better-known polymorphic virus was created in 1992 by the hacker Dark Avenger (a pseudonym) as a means of avoiding pattern recognition from antivirus software.

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