In today’s world of Information Technology, we enjoy a lot of benefits with the increasing rate of technological advancements and on the other hand, we also have to face some threats to our computers and one of them is Macro Viruses which is a specific type of malware.
Before going in-depth on our main topic it is necessary to know what is malware? as computer viruses are a type of malware. Macro Viruses are used by hackers in a great number in order to steal, destroy, or modify data from another person’s computer. I want you to follow along till the end of this article carefully in order to get to know about it in detail.
1. What are Malwares and What do they have to do with Viruses?
A virus is a specific kind of malware and in order to know about Viruses, we first need to know what is malware actually? Malware means all the programs that are written with malicious intent in order to steal another person’s important data or cause mischief to it.
There are a lot of different types of Malwares but here we are going to discuss only one specific type of malware called Macro Viruses.
2. What are Macro Viruses?
Macro Viruses are viruses that are written in Macro languages like VBA(Visual Basic for Applications) that are mainly platform-independent.
The malicious programs written using these languages can run on any platform and can also make forced attacks for performing different functions that the computer won’t allow without the administrator’s consent.
Microsoft Office is an example of the applications made using VBA(Visual Basic for Applications).
3. What are Macro Viruses capable of doing?
Macro Viruses are mainly capable of doing the following things:
- They can be easily embedded into word documents which makes it easy for them to do the job for which they are created.
- They are capable of infecting computers no matters which type of operating system is installed in them e.g. Windows, Linux, and Mac.
- They can destroy or create new data by themselves which could be used for fulfilling the malicious intentions of the hacker.
- They can even wipe out all your important data by formatting your hard drive and all your work will be lost for which you may be working for a long time.
- They can easily access your email accounts even without your permission and can use them for different suspicious activities.
4. How do they work and spread?
4.1 How do they work?
The working of Macro Viruses is really easy to understand and at the same time difficult to fight against. The reason is that they can easily be spread using a simple document or via a phishing attack.
Once it is on your computer it has the capability of replicating itself through which it can also reach other computers. Until the host program is run the virus can’t be detected and even by sharing simple infected emails it can spread this virus very easily.
4.2 How do they spread?
- They can spread easily by sharing simple infected emails.
- They can spread easily through USB drives or any other type of removable media that is infected with this virus.
- One can download an infected file from the internet unknowingly or sometimes infected files are downloaded which seem apparently totally different from the face.
- Even such infected files can be shared from a network connection to which the computer is connected.
- These type of viruses can very easily be embedded into simple documents and could easily be shared and once a person opens the document the virus gets activated.
5. How are Macro Viruses removed from the computer?
- The first thing that you need to do is to install security tools that are capable of detecting macro viruses and deleting them and such tools could be antivirus programs like Avast and AVG.
- Once you have done this the next thing that you need to do is to turn on your pc in safe mode and try deleting any unnecessary files that are not useful for you.
- After that, try to scan your computer with an antivirus program which can further analyze by itself that if your computer is clean from any viruses or not.
- Another important thing that I’ll suggest here is that once you have secured your data and removed the viruses you should move all your important data to another secure device and wipe all your data from your hard drive and install a fresh Operating System.
- But it is also worth mentioning here that it may not be possible in all the cases that you can secure your data or get rid of a Macro Virus easily as sometimes it can be a too much difficult task for you.
Note: Sometimes even such security tools are not capable enough to detect such viruses and they can harm or steal your data very easily. The only thing that you can do is either learn Cyber Security yourself if it is possible for you or consult a Cyber Security expert.
6. Taking proper preventive measures is the best cure
Yes, the best way is to prevent such virus attacks by taking all the necessary precautionary measures which are:
- Avoid opening any unnecessary documents and emails which do not concern you at all and you should better delete them.
- Install advanced antivirus programs and make sure that they are up to date and keep them updated with time.
- Operating Systems like Mac and Windows have built in various security features and programs that can protect your PC from different cyber attacks.
- Keep your computer updated by installing up to date security patches that are being issued by the creator of your operating system.
- Most important of all is to take every step carefully and do not do things over the internet especially that can lead to installing Macro Virus on your pc i.e. We should take proper care while downloading any file or software and try to know that if it is actually the file which you wish to download or is it something else and if you are not sure about it I’ll suggest you to not download it at all.
The more advanced the technology is getting and growing the more complex and difficult it is getting to protect ourselves from different cyber attacks. Macro Viruses are viruses that are built using macro languages and are written with malicious intent. They can steal your important data or even cause more harm for you if they are not prevented properly or stopped.
The best way, to protect ourselves from Macro Viruses or any other security threats and vulnerabilities, is to take proper preventive measures and deploy complete security policies that can make it difficult for viruses to cause harm or breach.
Also, let me know in the comment section what do you think about all the stuff that I’ve discussed in this article?