Know how a Virus Scan Actually Works: Everything About how Antivirus works

Know how a Virus Scan Actually Works: Everything About how Antivirus works

When it comes to protecting your system files and other important documents from any malware activity, you’ll have to rely on robust antivirus software. These programs are quite essential for your Windows computers. But have you ever thought about how antivirus detects and eliminates the virus in your system? Well, in this article, we will get to know about the virus-detection mechanism of the antivirus programs and how exactly does it work.

One of the important parts of a multi-layered security strategy is an antivirus program. Antivirus protection becomes relevant due to the constant stream of vulnerabilities for browsers, plug-ins, and many other reasons.


What’s the Difference among Virus, Worms & Malware?


Every day, we can hear that some new sort of computer virus, worm or malware has released which can easily corrupt or hamper information on our devices. Some of us might have been victims of such virus attacks. That’s the reason you will need the assistance of an antivirus program on your devices that can keep your data safe.

Let’s see the basic differences among a virus, a worm, and malware:

Virus: This is a piece of code that can copy itself and is capable of corrupting a system or destroying data on the device. It first gets attached with a legitimate program or document that supports macros and then it enters the device along with the original program.

Worm: It is a type of malware program that can replicate itself and spread over many computers through a network. Worms can cause damage to the network and are also a major concern to security failures on the particular device to get initial access.

Malware: Malware is also referred to as malicious software. This includes a huge range of viruses, worms, ransomware, Trojan horses, keyloggers, rootkits, spyware, adware, and other malicious software. It basically disrupts the affected computer or mobile and hacks into the private information of the user. These can also come with unwanted advertising on the websites.


Basic Symptoms to Identify a Virus-ridden Computer


Here are some of the symptoms that you might come across when your computers get affected by any virus or malware:


  • System slows down
  • Both online and offline pop-ups appear
  • Any program will fail to open, will run slow or crashes unexpectedly
  • Browsers stop displaying websites
  • Different problems related to external hardware
  • Blue screen of death error generates
  • ‘FBI’ or ‘Department of Justice’ screen appears right after the loading of Operating System

When such symptoms exhibit on your computer, it indicates that your device is infected by malware. To fix the issues, you need to get yourself an antivirus software immediately.


What is Antivirus Software?


The antivirus actually works as the penicillin of the Computer world. It is a software that is designed to detect and remove different threats like viruses, malware, keyloggers, Trojan horses, spyware, adware, rootkits and many more.

Though the antivirus might look lightweight, due to its advanced computing and security technologies, it is capable of handling any malware. Generally, it runs as a background process and during that period, it scans the computer, mobile phone or other compatible devices for any threats. Many antivirus programs come with real-time threat detection and protection features to protect the system against potential vulnerabilities.


Know how Antivirus Works: Why do You Need Antivirus Support?


Antivirus applications or tools are one of the most important elements which are offered with almost every anti-malware suites. The main goal of antivirus applications is to detect and block all malicious files which can harm the computer. Mostly, every antivirus application differs from one another in the implementation and mechanisms of malware or virus detection, but the techniques of detecting virus or malicious files are the same. By knowing these malware or virus detection techniques, you will get an idea of how antivirus works.

Signature-Based Detection
This technique is usually used in all types of antivirus applications. It checks all the executable (.EXE) files for all the known virus and different types of malware. If an unknown executable file is found with any misbehavior, it will be shown as an unknown virus.

Basically, with this technique, all the files, programs, and other applications are scanned. If you’ve downloaded an executable file, it will scan for the possibility of malware. Due to this technique, the antivirus software is capable of scanning all the files and programs in the background, while you are doing your work.

Heuristic-Based Detection
This detection technique is primarily used with a combination of signature-based detection. It is offered in nearly all the antivirus applications. Through this technique, the antivirus application is capable of detecting any new malware even if its definition is not in the antivirus tool.

A heuristic technique is used by antivirus applications to run the suspected applications with their code on runtime virtual environment to know whether it’s safe or not.

Behavior-Based Detection
This technique is used during the detection of any intrusion. Its goal is to detect the behavior of any malware at the time it executes. This technique comes into action when any suspicious behavior takes place like, the malicious code gets unpacked, and the modification of any host files or observation of keystrokes.

Sandbox Detection
The functionality of this detection technique is quite the same as behavioral detection. It does the execution of the application on a virtual environment and based on its performance, the decision is taken whether it’s safe to use or not.

Data Mining Technique
It’s one of the latest techniques which is in use currently. With some features of programs, Data mining helps in analyzing whether any application is safe or not.




What is antivirus software and what does it do?
Antivirus software or AV software is an anti-malware program that prevents, detects and eliminates any kind of virus or malware threat on the device. It was originally designed to detect and remove computer viruses, so it is named as ‘Antivirus’.

Will antivirus software remove existing viruses?

Yes, it is possible. If you don’t have any antivirus installed or if Windows Defender not enabled and you’re getting symptoms related to virus infection, then run an online virus scan. There are websites that will scan your desktop hard drive. Otherwise, you can install free antivirus software on your device.

Does antivirus detect malware?
For online threats like worms, viruses, trojan, keyloggers, etc., Antivirus programs are very much effective. Whereas, to remove new and sophisticated malware strains, anti-malware programs are used. For improving your device’s security, you’ll need both the antivirus and anti-malware.

Why do we need antivirus?
The antivirus programs are mainly designed to protect the users’ devices against the most harmful viruses and malware threats. Trojan horses and other unwanted malware files can affect your computer and lead it to malfunction. To make sure this doesn’t get worse, you need an antivirus and must also keep it up to date.