What is a Trojan Horse?
According to the Greek Mythology the Greeks built a huge wooden horse that was pulled into the city of Troy, pretending to be a gift to Athena as a sign of being undefeatable. However, the night after the horse was pulled inside the gates, a number of Greek warriors came out of the horse and opened the gates to the rest of the Greek army, leading to the destruction of the city and the ending of war.
Interesting fact… but how is that related to technology you ask? How can a huge wooden horse affect your PC? (Since it’s written as a virus in the title). Did the Greeks built a huge wooden horse to infect PCs? Well, the ancient horse itself is certainly no risk to your PC. But since the goal of the Trojan Horse was to trick the Trojans to pull the Horse inside their gates, leading to the destruction of the city, the term was then used to describe any act of trickery. Thus, one of the terms was used in computer literacy, the Trojan Horse Virus.
So? The Trojan Horse Virus…
Having explained the Trojan Horse, the Trojan Horse Virus is any Malware that is disguised as an authorized software tricking the user to run and execute it himself. The software starts doing its job, depending on the type of virus that infected the PC. Below is a list of the most known Trojan Horse Viruses:
Backdoor, allows the hacker to access remotely the infected PC.
Mailfinder, hacks email addresses from infected PC.
Rootkit, allows the hacker to keep his tools and activities hidden in the system.
Ransomware, one of the most recent types of attacks, it locks all your data, and cannot be unlocked without paying the hacker the desired amount of bitcoins.
So, how to prevent being infected by a Trojan Horse? Easy steps!
First of all, always keep your Operating System up to date, no matter what platform you are using. There are always security updates that need to be installed since the viruses are always improving themselves in order to attack newer systems.
Second, make sure to keep your anti-virus also up to date. As mentioned above, viruses take always new shapes and forms; so the anti-virus need to stay up to date in order to identify new viruses.
In addition to the above, make sure never to install software from unknown sources. Legitimate programs always come from official websites. So make sure the link you opened is an official one.
Finally, always keep a backup of your important files, so that no matter what happens to your PC (whether software or hardware related issue), you can still have access to them.
Following these steps is enough to stay safe and away from infections. Stay safe, and keep in mind that you’re always one click away from a Cyber disaster.