From cybersecurity experts to your mom, everyone knows says you’re supposed to use an antivirus to protect your computer from hackers, viruses, and other types of cyber threats. But even if you’ve been diligently using an anti virus program all these years, how can you know that it’s actually effective? Well, security experts have already thought of this and created several types of test malware. This malware is not actually real – it will not cause any harm to your device if your anti-malware program can’t prevent the attack. But at the same time, by downloading the file, you’ll be able to test your computer’s defenses and see whether or not they can stop various types of attacks. Here are 5 most popular malware test files you can download right now:
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RanSim – free toom for simulating ransomware attacks
Today, ransomware is a bigger threat than ever before. Every year millions of devices are affected by this type of malware. The most famous ransomware attack called Wannacry occurred in May of 2017 and affected over 300,000 devices worldwide. Ransomware encrypts information stored on a device, preventing the user from accessing the information or using the device. At the same time, the malware program demands a ransom in exchange for the decryption key. If the owner of the device refuses to pay up, they lose their information or even the device itself, as it becomes useless.
RanSim is a free ransomware simulation software that creates 10 simulated ransomware attacks on your device. So instead of just checking how your defenses will hold up in one attack scenario, it tests 10 different situations. One advantage of this tool is that it doesn’t encrypt any of your files for the test, so you can rest easy.
SpyShelter test tool for Windows
SpyShelter is a malware testing tool that can be used to test devices running on Windows. The tool doesn’t need to be installed on your computer. You can use this program to run six different types of tests, including sound recording, keylogging, webcam capturing, clipboard capturing, and more.
WICAR – internet browser security tester
While most malware simulators test the defenses of a specific device or network, WICAR was developed to check how well computers are protected against threats that are coming from your internet browser. All of this is done without causing any threat to your device or files.
EICAR – anti-malware test file
EICAR is another popular file that’s used to test antiviruses and other cyber defenses. This specific test virus was developed by the European Institute for Computer Antivirus Research. If you run this program on your computer, it will simply display a message telling you that it’s a test virus file on the screen of your computer and then automatically close the window.
While this file is not malware and does not contain any harmful code or code typically found in viruses, anti-malware programs usually recognize the file as malware. EICAR-test-file is a 100% safe testing tool used by professionals and regular computer users alike.
FortiGuard – test compressed files for malware
While antivirus software has gotten pretty good at detecting most types of malware before it can do any harm, attackers have found a way around it. Today, many viruses are hidden deep inside compressed files. Since most security software can’t test compressed files, viruses can make it onto your device without being detected. Malware is often found inside files compressed using the following formats: CAB, 7Z, and TAR.GZ. These are legitimate compression formats that are often used by hackers for attack purposes. Fortunately, you can use FortiGuard to test your device’s protection measures.
TestVirus App for Android devices
Computers are not the only type of devices that can be affected by malware. Android phones can also be infected by viruses, which is why it’s advisable to have an antivirus program installed on your Android device at all times. To test this software, you can download the app called TestVirus from Google Play Market.
Does free antivirus software work?
Yes, most free antivirus software will protect your computer against common malware. However, paid versions of the software may offer better protection, more features, and other perks.
What does an antivirus do?
Antivirus software scans the files on your device in search of potentially harmful programs, such as viruses, ransomware, trojans, and more. Once these files are detected, they are isolated or removed from the device and the user is informed about the threat that was prevented.
Is it enough to use an antivirus?
While the benefits of antivirus software are undisputed, in some cases, much stronger cybersecurity tools are required to ensure that your devices and networks are protected. If you own a business or handle a lot of sensitive information as part of your job, you should look into implementing additional cybersecurity measures.