It’s crucial to know how your antivirus software identifies threats. Cyber-terrorists continue to develop more dangerous viruses and malware that can infiltrate computers and steal data, corrupt documents and cause other damage. As you probably know the primary purpose of the majority of antivirus programs is to find and eliminate malicious threats before they cause any harm. They do this by looking at your data, system files and computer software.
Antivirus programs have historically relied on signature-based detection. It compares documents received by your device to the database of known virus signatures. This method searches for signatures of a specific virus, then locates the corresponding file or program, and warns you in the event of a match. It is effective, however hackers keep creating new and various types of malware. To detect them, antivirus programs must keep their definition files updated with the most recent virus samples.
Encrypting the malware’s payload can be another method hackers employ to avoid antivirus scanners. Once a virus is encoded, it will be able to escape signatures and scans because it isn’t an executable. This is usually accomplished by tagging a small header program on the front of the encoded virus which allows it to leap the counter of the program and run at the first opportunity.
Antivirus software uses various methods to look for viruses, including heuristic-based detection and behavior-based detection. Heuristic-based analyses are similar to signature detection in that it seeks out patterns and tendencies in the program’s behavior. Heuristic detection, which is a trial-and error approach can identify viruses that signature-based methods can’t.