What is malware?
Malware is any malicious software built to gain unauthorized access to your device and, in most cases, steal information for financial gain. Malware comes in many forms, including viruses, adware, worms, trojans, spyware, ransomware, keyloggers, and rootkits. If malware infects your computer or smartphone, it may steal your personal or financial information, damage your device, or cause other serious problems. Learn how malware works.
How to prevent malware attacks
Click with caution
One wrong click could lead to a malware infection, so be careful when interacting with links, dismissing pop-ups, or visiting new websites. The “Download” button or the “X” on an ad can sometimes trick people into downloading malicious files to their devices.
Use apps responsibly
Never download apps without doing research first. See what other people have to say about them, and only download them from the official developer’s website. Some free apps may actually be malicious programs in disguise.
Use security software
By the time you find out that malware is already on your device, it could be too late to save your data. Prevention is key, so use something that will stop malware from getting into your device in the first place. Something like NordVPN.
Why choose NordVPN’s malware blocker
Start using NordVPN’s malware blocker
Just enable the malware blocker in your NordVPN app — and we’ll do the rest.
Open the NordVPN app.
Click the shield icon on the left.
Turn on web protection.
Other ways to protect your devices from malware
Antivirus software is one of the best malware protection tools. A reliable antivirus will help you detect and delete malware from your device before it has time to cause major damage. Make sure you perform regular scans to keep your device safe.
A VPN encrypts your internet connection and hides your IP address, generally making you safer and more private online. When you’re using a VPN, it becomes more difficult for cybercriminals to target you directly, especially on public Wi-Fi.
A secure or safe browser provides additional security features, like blocking trackers and URLs that may contain malware. You can customize these browsers to give you more privacy and security as you surf the web.
A firewall is a cybersecurity tool that blocks malicious traffic from entering a network. While firewalls are typically used by enterprises, you can get a firewall for the device you want to protect. It will act as a gatekeeper and keep out malicious traffic.
Frequently asked questions
Why do I need protection from malware?
How does NordVPN’s malware blocker work?
Can malware be removed?
How can you tell if you have malware?
- Slowing down and crashing repeatedly.
- Refusing to shut down or restart.
- Downloading or deleting files and software without prompt.
- Showing intrusive ads, pop-ups, and changing your browser settings.
- Filling up your storage space with random files.
NordVPN’s Threat Protection comes with a handy vulnerability detection feature that automatically scans software on Windows devices to detect flaws cybercriminals could exploit. While this feature doesn’t detect malware, it may help prevent malicious infections.
Are anti-malware tools the same as malware blockers?
No, they’re not exactly the same. Malware blockers are designed to prevent malware from entering a system or device, while anti-malware software also detects and removes malware from devices. Nearly all anti-malware tools include a malware scanner to check your system for malware and viruses.
While you can find free anti-malware tools and blockers, using a reliable paid provider is best. A free malware removal tool may not have the best malware protection features — and may bombard you with ads and promotions.