Malware. Even the word sounds sinister. It’s a fitting term for software designed to wreak havoc on computers—and people’s lives. Malware often infects computers when users install or run otherwise useful software that contains malicious code hidden within it. Some forms of malware grab headlines, like the “WannaCry” ransomware attack that infected 300,000 computers and effectively shut down the UK National Health Services.
How big a deal is malware? The computer security company Symantec detected 401 million unique malware variants in 2016. Not 401 million cases of malware, but that many unique malware threats, each with the potential to infect thousands, even millions, of computer systems. With the population of the U.S. at 325 million, that stat represents 1.2 unique malware variants per man, woman, or child in America.
But don’t get down. There are ways to protect your digital self, starting with Entefy’s roundup of guides to protecting the online you.
Entefy’s enFacts are illuminating nuggets of information about the intersection of communications, artificial intelligence, security and cyber privacy, and the Internet of Things. Have an idea for an enFact? We would love to hear from you.