Below are come comments I've come across that are common misconceptions when it comes to computer viruses and other malware.
"If I download a file onto a disk, I don't have to worry about a viruses." - This is not true, just because you've placed a file on a diskette or moved a file from a diskette to your hard drive does not mean that your computer cannot be infected. Many viruses are memory resident and capable of loading themselves into memory once a diskette is placed in the computer.
"If I buy sealed software I don't have to worry about viruses." or "If I just buy registered software I don't have to worry about viruses." - This is not always true, just because the program may be surrounded in plastic doesn't mean that it cannot be infected with a virus. When a software program is saved onto a diskette or disc if that computer or program is infected the virus will attach itself. Although this issue very rarely occurs it is still a possibility.
"If I don't download anything off of the Internet I don't have to worry about viruses." - This is definitely not true. Although most companies and websites will scan the file for viruses before they make them available to download some may not. In addition many people create a site or a file to download with the intention of spreading a virus, spyware, Trojan horses, or other malware.
"If I just read my e-mail, I will not have to worry about viruses." - Not true; there are viruses out there that are distributed through e-mail; also, files can be attached with e-mail and if executed can infect the computer. Today, this is one of the most common ways computer viruses spread around the world.
"If I don't get on the Internet I don't have to worry about viruses." - This, unfortunately, is not the case. Although many viruses are spread over the Internet today it is still possible to contract a computer virus form any diskette or disc you put in the computer.
"You can contract viruses from just looking at web pages." - Not true. However, you can contract a virus if you download and execute a file from that web page. In addition spyware and other scripts can be executed from just viewing a web page. Although these programs are not designed to delete files on your computer they should be considered a privacy violation.