What Are Bots?
Bots, or Internet robots, are also known as spiders, crawlers, and web bots. While they may be utilized to perform repetitive jobs, such as indexing a search engine, they often come in the form of malware. Malware bots are used to gain total control over a computer.
Good Bots Vs Bad Bots
One of the typical “good” bot uses is to gather information. Bots in such guises are called web crawlers. Another “good” use is automatic interaction with instant messaging, instant relay chat, or assorted other web interfaces. Dynamic interaction with websites is yet another way bots are used for positive purposes.
Malicious bots are defined as self-propagating malware that infects its host and connects back to a central server(s). The server functions as a “command and control center” for a botnet, or a network of compromised computers and similar devices. Malicious bots have the “worm-like ability to self-propagate,” and can also:
🔴Obtain financial information
🔴Capture and analyze packets
🔴Launch DoS attacks
🔴Open back doors on the infected computer
🔴Exploit back doors opened by viruses and worms
Bots are usually used to infect large numbers of computers. These computers form a “botnet,” or a bot network.
Is Your Computer Infected By Bots?
Here are some of the many ways to tell if your computer is infected by bots:
🟠Internet access is slow for no apparent reason.
🟠The computer crashes for no apparent reason.
🟠The fan goes into overdrive when the device is idle.
🟠The computer takes a long time to shut down, or fails to shut down correctly.
🟠Pop-up windows and advertisements appear even when you aren’t using a web browser.
🟠Friends and family receive email messages you did not send.
🟠Computer programs are running slowly.
🟠Settings have changed, and there’s no way to reverse them.
🟠The browser features components you didn’t download.
How Do I Protect My Computer From Bots?
It’s very possible to protect your computer from bots, but it takes diligence and knowing what to look for. Use the following tips to keep your computer safe:
🟣Install firewalls to block malicious attacks and never turn them off.
🟣Use a long and complicated password that contains numbers and symbols.
🟣Never use the same password for multiple programs.
🟣Install quality anti-malware software such as Norton Security to protect your device.
🟣Ensure software is up to date, and never ignore system updates.
🟣Refrain from using flash drives, or thumb drives, in an infected computer.
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