4. How can they be removed?
As computer viruses became more of a menace, companies began to develop software to detect and remove them. These were named 'anti-virus software'.
There are a number of anti-virus programs available for wiping out viruses for example Norton, McAfee and Sophos.
When the anti-virus software recognises a virus pattern, it will alert the user, and ask them whether they want to remove the virus and clean the system, or whether they simply want to 'quarantine' the virus.
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New and more damaging viruses are being written all the time and so to keep up with these new threats, the anti-virus companies provide constant updates to their software. Normally, you log on to the internet and the software will update itself either automatically or after a certain period set by you.
There is usually a small annual fee involved for this service, but it is a small price to pay for peace of mind.
The screen below is a typical anti-virus management screen, it shows the date of the last update, whether you want it to update itself automatically and it also shows when you last carried out a full virus scan.
However, there is a small disadvantage to using anti-virus software. Installing new software can become very awkward as the anti-virus software 'thinks' that there is a virus at large as the new software installs itself into various directories and system areas. This is why installation routines often advise that anti-virus software be switched off during installation.
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