Virus and Spyware

A. My computer is infected with a virus. Why was my network connection shut off?

The OIT Acceptable Use Policy states that ResNet has the right to remove from the network any machines which are deemed a threat. Many viruses, "worms," and "Trojan horses" are designed to infect other computers they can find on the network. Computers identified as being infected with a virus will be disconnected from the network to protect others' computers from becoming infected. Please consider this as a protective measure and not as disciplinary action against you.

B. Where can I get anti-virus software?

Specifically for Windows machines, OIT recommends the installation of Immunet.  For other operating systems OIT does not provide any antivirus software for personal use, however, OIT makes recommendations for browsing best practices as outlined here.

C. My computer is infected with a virus. What antivirus software should I use?

You are allowed to use any antivirus software you wish to keep your computer virus-free. Once your computer is disconnected due to a virus infection, you must either update your existing antivirus software or install the programs as recommended in the browsing best practices page above and eliminate the problem before your network connection is restored. You may also choose to reimage or reformat your hard drive to remediate the problem.

D. Why does my web browser sometimes go to sites that I do not want it to go to?

You may have any of a variety of programs running invisibly. To remedy this situation, it is necessary to scan your computer for malicious software that may have been installed without your knowledge. We recommend programs such as are AdwCleaner and Malwarebytes to protect your machines from spyware.

E. Why does my internet/computer seem slower than normal?

Since spyware runs in the background of an operating system, it will still use some system resources. If a computer has enough spyware on it, there may be a noticeable slowdown in Internet speed, general computing speed, or both. Programs such as AdwCleaner or Malwarebytes can be used to help address this problem.

Why do I get popups when my computer is not attended?

Popups are most commonly seen when surfing the web, but may also occur even when you are not at your computer. Pop-ups are typically caused by adware. Adware differs from spyware in the fact that adware is software that may have been installed on your computer by a remote site. Many free utilities that you download from the Internet will install hidden software that sends details of the websites you visit and other information from your computer (which can include your email address) to advertisers so they can target you with popup ads and spam. The easiest way to make sure your computer is clean from adware is to use AdwCleaner and Malwarebytes.