How do I know if I have a virus or spyware?

So your PC is running slow, weird pages are popping up, and things don’t feel right.  Do you have a virus, spyware, or something else?  How can you tell?

Luckily, there are some tell-tale signs.  With viruses, you will want to be on the lookout for fake websites loading when you expect legit ones, lots of spam being sent from your email, your antivirus program not running, and your homepage being changed.  Realize that there are far more things that viruses do to your machine—some of them being subtle and un-noticed.  Spyware, on the other hand, seems to be much more visible.  Wallpaper changes, programs running claiming to have found viruses (see below) and unable to browse the web are some signs.

If you find yourself with any of these symptoms, it is best to call an expert.  If you attempt to clean yourself, you can break critical system files and lose progress.  Some viruses will download itself again if it is not completely removed.  Viruses and spyware can steal your data, including login passwords, personal documents, and more.  Once you are clean, be sure to install a good anti-virus.  We recommend Panda Cloud Antivirus.  Forget about AVG and spybot–these programs are junk and don’t work as well as others.

Stay safe and clean out there!