What Does Virus Mean?

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.


Techopedia Explains Virus

Viruses are malicious programs that spread throughout computer files without user knowledge. Most widespread virus infections spread through email message attachments that activate when opened. The vicious cycle of a virus perpetuates as infected emails are forwarded to multiple users. Viruses also spread through shared media, such as Universal Serial Bus (USB) drives.

Initially created as pranks, viruses are responsible for widespread and significant computer system and file destruction. Installing anti-virus software helps prevent, block or remove previously installed viruses.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…