Nobody expects a computer to be infected, which is why it catches most people completely off guard. If you suspect your computer has been infected by a virus, malware, spyware, or ransomware, the first and most important step is to not panic. Most cyberattacks are socially engineered, designed to illicit a hasty response from the user. That’s when the real damage can occur.

Consider, as an example, the ‘tech support’ scam. Believe it or not, most users are targeted by a simple Javascript pop-up that can’t actually harm the computer. Users panic and call the phone number mentioned to ‘fix’ the computer and then willingly hand over control of their computer and files to scammers.

Take stock of the situation and follow these simple tips from our IT consulting services if your computer has been infected.

Signs your computer is infected

Here are a few giveaways that your computer may be infected with. You may experience one or more of these symptoms.

  • Unexpected pop-up windows
  • Random sounds
  • Unexpected mouse movement or keystrokes
  • Loss of personal data
  • Slow operation
  • Unexpected resource usage
  • Random connections to unknown websites
  • Constant alerts about attempted network connections
  • Alerts from anti-virus, anti-malware software

What to do if your computer is infected

Step 1: Speak to IT professional services in Toronto

Call a reputable provider of IT solutions in Toronto immediately! A professional support team is best equipped to isolate the infection and restore your data. Be wary of the advice and ‘quick fixes’ on the internet – it is mostly generic and ineffective.

Step 2: Stop using the machine

Whether you are certain the machine is infected or if you suspect it to be, do not use it until it has been looked at by IT professional services in Toronto. Further use risks increasing the potential for data loss or – worse – spreading it to other devices on the network.

Step 3: Isolate your computer from your network

Disconnect the device from wireless and wired networks. Disconnect the Ethernet cable attached to the computer (if present). To disconnect Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, don’t just turn off the adapters, also ‘Forget’ previously saved networks.

Step 4: Reset your passwords immediately

Using a device you know has not been compromised, start changing all your passwords. Log-in credentials to workplace accounts, financial accounts, and email accounts are most vulnerable and must be changed immediately. Communicate the possibility of the breach to your IT consulting services team, so they can prevent unauthorized sign-ins.

Step 5: Protect your information

If there is sensitive personal or professional information on the device, it is best to delete it as soon as possible. Do not use removable flash drives or cloud storage solutions on the machine – these can allow the infection to migrate to other devices.

Step 6: Keep your backup separate

Do not connect your backup device to a machine that has been infected! Also, do not try to make a backup of your data (on the infected machine) without consulting with an IT services professional. Viruses can infect all files on a device. Connecting your backup device to a compromised machine can jeopardize your data.

Step 7: Do not pay a ransom

Do not pay a ransom if your computer has been compromised by ransomware. Many users act impulsively, thinking paying ransom will end their ordeal. However, there is no guarantee that paying ransom will unlock the encryption – it may even bolster cyber attackers with the knowledge that you are willing to pay!

Contact IT consulting service in Toronto

Get in touch with an expert team providing IT solutions in Toronto immediately. NUMENTIS helps users recover from viruses and malware safely and protect their network from being compromised. Speak to our support team immediately if you suspect your device has been compromised.