Cyber Chat Episode 16 – What is malware?

In episode 16 of Cyber Chat, Rob May describes the 3 main types of malware and how you can protect your organisation from a cybersecurity attack.

Managing the ongoing cybersecurity of your IT infrastructure should be a primary concern – whatever the shape or size of your organisation. Cybersecurity breaches are the number one threat in today’s business landscape. Incidents come in many forms: cyber attacks; laptops left on trains; malicious staff; or, even more simply, accidental data loss caused by human error. The human firewall is vital as a line of defence for any organisation and in this video Rob, author of The Human Firewall (available on Amazon) explains what the Human Firewall is.

Find out more about ramsac’s cybersecurity services

Cyber Chat – Episode 16 – video transcript

Hi, I’m Rob May, I’m MD of ramsac and welcome to Cyber Chat. Today, I want to talk to you about malware. So, malware is any software that’s malicious, that’s where the name comes from malicious software. And there are lots of different types of malware. I’m going to tell you about 3 common types today. The first is a virus, so if your computer has a virus, then, so your machines infected, if your machine comes into contact with somebody else’s machine, then you can spread the infection, just like a human virus. Now to be pedantic, a virus is program specific. So, what that means is, if the virus I’ve got on my computer is a Microsoft Word virus, if your computer doesn’t have Microsoft Word, you can’t catch my virus. So, there program specific. One word of warning here if you use an Apple Mac, make sure you have got antivirus on your machine. There’s an urban myth that Apple’s don’t get viruses, and unfortunately there are thousands and thousands of Apple viruses in the wild, so make sure that you’ve got good protection. And whether you are using an Apple, or a PC make sure you buying good antivirus protection. You know, don’t rely on free antivirus, as far as I’m concerned, I think you get what you pay for.

The second type of malware is a worm. And a worm is a form of virus that really burrows its way through, so anything it comes into contact with, it’s going to spread the infection, and spread the misery.

And the third type is something that’s called a Trojan Horse. Now I tend to think that businesses are spending a sensible amount of money on protecting themselves from this type of problem, and as such, we see very few Trojan Horses in the workplace, today. however, our workforce and our employees more and more are working remotely. And employers aren’t spending money, ensuring that their staff’s computers are protected. And I can pretty much guarantee that at one point or another someone’s seen a Trojan Horse certainly on their computer at home. And a good example of this will be you’re on a website and a message pops up, and it says we’ve detected that your computer is not running as fast as it could be, click here to run this utility and it will speed up your machine. That’s a hoax. There is no utility on a website that miraculously and for free is going to make your computer run faster. That’s a Trojan Horse, so a piece of software, pretending to be something that it’s not in order to attack you.

So, be aware of malware make sure you’ve got good antivirus and keep it updated, and make sure you’ve got a good subscription. I hope that’s been useful. I look forward to speaking to again soon, thank you.

Quiz yourself

Are you more cyber savvy than an 11 year old?

11-14 year olds get asked these questions in school. Could you get these right?