How to know if a PDF has a virus
29 / 8 / 2021
29 / 8 / 2021
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How to check for hidden malware
As we all know, documents such as PDFs can contain links and hyperlinks that allow us to jump from one page to another. It can help us navigate through resources and web pages in one click. It’s considered the norm to find these links within a PDF, but also, it is an avenue for attackers. Links can lead you to malicious sites, manipulate your computer, get information or even download several unwanted files. Anti-virus software can help you by scanning the links but to make sure that it doesn’t lead you to something else, you need to check it manually. You can simply do this by hovering over the hyperlink. An alt text will appear near it and if the text is the same as the link destination, then the sender is honest to its sources. However, take note that most hackers purchase credible-looking domain names so always do your research first on these sites before going over and clicking them.
Always remember to never trust a web address encoded on the content. It can always forward you to another website with viruses.
PDF can also contain images, videos, flash, audio, and multimedia. More likely, you can download, play and view this content but each element can also be corrupted and contain viruses. Once you download them, a virus can overtake your computer without your knowledge. Unless you have an anti-virus installed, your computer will be harmed. To check for viruses, each multimedia should be scanned by your anti-virus software.
Codes are part of programs and files that execute commands. A virus is simply a code that does the same – execute the command. When a PDF file is encoded with a virus, it will execute a command to infect your computer, modifying computer programs with its own code. Using unreliable readers to open your PDF can possibly make it easier for the command to breakthrough. That is why it is always recommended to use Adobe Acrobat Reader in opening and viewing PDF. With Adobe, your computer will be protected from such command-based viruses. Occasionally update your Adobe PDF reader as well to better guard your computer against malicious PDF. An updated reader means vulnerabilities of this tool are fixed, hence harder for a virus to break into. Don’t forget to update the reader from the application and not from ads.
Step one: Open your Adobe Reader
Step two: Click EDIT and select PREFERENCES
Step four: Click OK. The settings should be saved.
Avoiding Viruses – in Conclusion
Basically, it is still best not to open a PDF if the sender is suspicious or if you do not know where it came from. If you’re willing to risk it though, you can always use anti-virus software to scan the file first before opening it. Many software nowadays includes virus protection for web browsers and will automatically scan the pop-up windows, attachments, and downloads. Essentially, you also need to update your system regularly to avoid any virus mishap. By updating, you allow your computer to fix its vulnerable sides on its operating system.