Believe it or not, in order for a Trojan to infect your computer, you have to install the application yourself. A Trojan doesn’t copy itself like a virus; you have to (knowingly or unknowingly) run the executable file that contain the malware. Once you run it, the Trojan will install and then run every time you open your computer. The most common way for a Trojan Horse to spread is via spam email with malicious attachments.
A Trojan Horse can record on-screen activity, webcam or microphone activity, but it’s mostly used to collect passwords and credit card details from victims.
Last year Trojans accounted for nearly 69% of all new malware created and 65% of all infections.
There are few things you can do to keep Trojan Horses out:
- Keep your computer’s operating system and all computer programs up to date and activate automatic download of security updates
- Take care in keeping your browsing software, email client and extensions like Java, Adobe Flash and PDF up to date
- Install and keep updated antivirus and firewall on your computer
- Do not click on links or download attachments from unusual looking messages received through email, social networks or instant messaging
If your antivirus detects a Trojan on your computer, assume that your personal information has been compromised. Remove the Trojan then change all your passwords that you used or stored on your computer. Additionally, if you used credit cards or bank details on your computer, assume that they have been copied by a criminal. Watch your bank account and, if needed, report the incident to your bank.