How to get rid of computer virus is not as complicated as you might think. Yes, your computer is behaving strangely, but don’t give in to panic or despair. Instead, follow these steps to remove the virus:
How to get rid of computer virus – start with a professional service
This is our go-to recommendation, especially if you don’t feel comfortable dealing with a computer virus by yourself. You can search for a local service company or contact opens in a new windowClickAway and receive assistance from a trained security specialist.
Download and install antivirus software
Windows Defender or Microsoft Security Essentials are pre-installed on modern Windows systems, but you might want to opt for a different solution. Choose a reputable vendor, download and install the package. Read instructions carefully and make sure there’s no conflict of interest: in some cases, you may have to disable the OS’s built-in software (if the new product doesn’t take care of it automatically).
Disconnect from the internet
Now that you have your weapon, it’s time to cut the connection, so the malware can’t use it to share your data or send itself to all of your contacts. Turn on Airplane Mode, switch off Wi-Fi connectivity, or unplug the internet cable, and you’re done. If the virus is blocking control of those functions, and your connection is wireless, turn off your cable modem or router.
Reboot into safe mode
Warning: this step is for more advanced users. If you’re unsure, proceed to the next step.
In Safe Mode, your system runs with the bare minimum of services needed for operation. This prevents most malware from starting up at all or seriously limits the damage it can inflict. Below are links to the official Microsoft guides on entering Safe Mode on different versions of Windows:
Run a full scan, delete the virus or put it in quarantine
Now, it’s time to fire up the antivirus software (if you skipped the previous step, no worries, you’re still on your fastest route to safety). Choose the most complete scan option available and make sure to include all of your hard drive letters. If you suspect the virus could have come from an external disk or a pen drive, keep them connected too.
When your software detects the threat, select the appropriate action: to delete or quarantine it. Use the latter option if that’s what the program suggests or if you know that the file in question is critical or valuable to you.
Delete temporary files and clear browser cache
There’s a chance the virus is lurking in the Windows temporary folders or the cache of your browser. We advise you to go the extra mile and take no prisoners. Let us know if you have questions about how to get rid of computer virus.