Antivirus programs scan for, identify and remove viruses from computers. Numerous antivirus tools exist, including ESET Online Scanner, Trend Micro HouseCall and Kaspersky Rescue Disk. Since each tool has weaknesses, users can better remove viruses by running multiple antivirus programs. If these tools are not enough, specific instructions for removing a virus are often found online using a search engine. However, manual removal commonly requires technical experience because the process can expose users to vital computer files and settings.
If a user running an antivirus program is infected by a virus, that user should assume that the software is either compromised or lacks the ability to deal with the virus. In some cases, viruses completely prevent the normal operation of computers and stop users from running antivirus tools. A user may need to run a lightweight tool from the infected computer's safe mode to bypass the restrictions caused by the virus.
A computer virus is a small malicious program that propagates from computer to computer. While some viruses may go unnoticed, others can cause serious damage or even break a computer. Viruses are spread by looking like harmless files, such as an email attachment or program found online. Since new viruses appear constantly, users must make sure their antivirus programs are up-to-date to stay protected.