What is a Trojan Virus and How to Avoid it?

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Whether once or twice, you must have heard about Trojans, especially if you frequently surf the Internet. Yep, in a more familiar context, a Trojan is a computer virus that has been quite popular since its inception.

Then, if you like mythological stories, you may have also read the story from Greece about the Trojan horse (Troya). Actually, there is a connection between computer viruses and Trojan horses, you know.

Basically, the origin of the name Trojan virus is because the way it works is similar to the story of the Greek horse. Both of them don't look suspicious, but they carry a big risk in the form of security threats.

Curious? Now! In this article we will discuss what Trojans are, complete with their history and how to protect yourself from them. Come on, just scroll down below!

What are Trojans?

What are Trojans?

Trojans are malicious programs that disguise themselves as valid software. These programs hide malware in the files you want to download, for example in attachments received in emails, computer games, songs, or movies.

Trojan viruses often pretend to be ordinary programs but actually cause damage to your digital devices. These viruses carry malware or malicious code for various purposes, but usually always have a bad impact on your PC or device.

These programs generally hide in files downloaded to the computer. Once downloaded, the Trojan will enter your system and be able to carry out functions programmed into it, such as deleting, copying, or modifying data.

This method has recently become very popular for taking over control of a system or device. What's worse, now Trojans are one of the most frequent attacks, even causing victims of large companies.

So besides knowing what Trojans mean, you also have to know how to protect yourself from Trojans and how they work. Usually a Trojan has its own purpose depending on the target it will control on your computer or device.

Please also note that Trojans are not like viruses in general which replicate themselves. Trojans usually 'open doors' or gaps in the system and can cause major damage. Well, phishing is one of the consequences that can arise from this virus.

Trojans require action from the user such as downloading or installing them on a computer in order to work. But you need to be careful, sometimes you don't realize it. This is what gave it the name Trojan.

What are History of Trojans?

After knowing what a Trojan is and its scheme, you may start to realize one thing: these viruses often pretend to be ordinary, harmless programs. Likewise with the Trojan horse or Troy in Greek mythology.

In the past, there was a battle called the Trojan War between Greek troops and the citizens of the city of Troy. To enter the city of Troy, the Greek troops made a large wooden horse as a gift to the city of Troy.

Apparently, several Greek soldiers hid inside the horse so they could enter through the gate without obstacles to conquer the city of Troy. Because the people who received it did not realize that the horse was a trick, the Greek troops managed to take control of the city by sneaking out of the wooden gift.

This horse is disguised as something harmless but actually brings big threats and problems, and this is where the inspiration for the Trojan virus comes from. Hmm, makes sense, huh? If you want to know more details, we will discuss how the Trojan virus works below.

How Trojan Viruses Work?

The purpose and way a Trojan works is to disrupt the user's device without them knowing. This program can read passwords, open security gaps against viruses and other malware, copy information, and even hold the system hostage as part of a network of 'zombie computers'.

Because it does not reproduce itself independently, the Trojan needs to be downloaded to the computer like any normal program in order to run the .exe file and act according to the program.

Therefore, Trojan viruses must always be hidden. Without realizing it, this virus can track, record and copy your data, as well as endanger the performance of the network and devices where it is installed.

Its often disguised form also allows this virus to reach you in various formats, for example as an email attachment, website pop-up, link or URL, program installed on a computer, game, song or film downloaded from the Internet.

In addition, computers, tablets or cellphones infected with Trojans can also be used to infect other devices. This is called botnetting, where technology criminals develop programs to control a user's PC remotely.

By controlling the victims' PC remotely, the Trojan virus is then used to spread the malware further through a network of other devices.

What is the most common Trojan?

Because Trojans are viruses that can be programmed for specific purposes, there are several criteria that differentiate this type of virus. Here are the most common types of Trojans:

  • Backdoor Trojans. This program acts like a gateway, opening a back door on the user's computer so that an attacker can take control of it. That way, this type of Trojan can steal data, download other viruses, create botnets, and so on.
  • Trojan Downloader. This type of Trojan can download other malicious files to the attacked device, and can be updated remotely by the attacker who developed it.
  • Infostealer Trojan. As the name suggests, this type steals data from the attacked computer.
  • Remote Trojans. This program is designed to gain full remote access and control over the attacked device.
  • DDoS Attack Trojans. The attack carried out by the DDos Attack Trojan is a DDoS attack, with the aim of damaging or even causing down-time on the network. This program will flood the server with requests, increasing traffic, and weakening the network.
  • Fake Antivirus Trojan. Pretending to be an antivirus program, this Trojan displays a fake threat warning as if the user's computer has been infected with malware and needs extra protection. The goal is to cause panic, and often makes people buy fake antivirus when it actually causes bigger problems.
  • Trojan rootkits. The purpose of a Trojan Rootkit is to hide data and files from the device so that this program cannot be found and can continue to carry out its actions longer.
  • Ransom Trojan. This type of Trojan holds the computer hostage, changes data, and even causes damage to the device. You can only repair or get your data back after paying the ransom.
  • Trojan exploits. If there is a vulnerability in a program or application on your device, this type of Trojan will take advantage of this opportunity to launch an attack.
  • GameThief Trojan. As the name suggests, this type of Trojan steals data and information from online game users.
  • Spy Trojans. When installed on a device, this malware remains hidden, but will spy on you while browsing the internet, snooping on your access, taking screenshots, and tracking the data you type on the keyboard.

What is example of a Trojan attack?

So far, there have been several Trojan attacks that have occurred. Well, of all, we will give three examples of existing Trojans, which are famous for the enormous damage they cause both to networks and devices.

  • Rakhni Trojan. Infecting devices via ransomware or tools such as cryptojacker, which is used to mine cryptocurrency.
  • Tiny Banker. Developed by hackers to obtain financial data. This attack was very popular after attacking several banks in the United States.
  • Zbot or Zeus. A collection of malware and tools targeting financial services and account data. This program stores the sequence typed by the user, so it can find passwords, login credentials, and sensitive data.

How can we protect against Trojan virus?

How can we protect against Trojan virus?

As previously discussed, some of the risks posed by Trojans can bring major losses to their victims. Therefore, it is very important for you to always be alert and protect yourself from this malware. The steps and precautions you should take to be safer from possible Trojan attacks are:

1. Use a sophisticated antivirus program

This software will scan your computer and identify possible threats such as viruses and malware. Run scans and diagnostics as often as possible, or configure your antivirus to perform regular scanning on your device.

Cyber security steps can start from installing effective protection software, especially for Trojans which are able to disguise themselves very well on the system.

2. Update the device OS

Immediately update your device's OS when there is a new update. However, security gaps in programs or systems that are not immediately patched can become vulnerabilities exploited by Trojans. So, make sure to always update your programs, applications, and operating system.

3. Pay attention to the websites you open

Some security software will display a warning when you access an unsafe web page. Don't force yourself to visit websites that have indications of being dangerous because they may contain Trojan links, for example in advertisements, pop-ups, and the like.

4. Create a unique and complex account password

This prevention method may seem simple, but it is very important for your internet security. Actually, this step is not only related to Trojans, but should be a basic procedure.

Additionally, we recommend enabling two-factor authentication on all websites and apps that provide it. Be careful with your email, never download attachments or click on links in emails from unknown senders.

5. Backup Data Regularly

Whether in the cloud or hard-drive, regular information backup will be a powerful preventive measure to ensure the security of your files. You'll always have other data stored in a safer place in case something bad happens to your device.

6. Evaluation of Device Performance

Although they are often hidden and disguised, keep in mind that Trojans are programs that can affect your computer's performance at any time. Monitor the processes running on the device, and see how much CPU and memory are used.

7. Avoid Downloading Pirated Files

Although piracy is not the main source of virus spread, pirated programs and media are not always safe and can carry malware. So, be careful when downloading files from strangers or dubious sources. On mobile devices such as cell phones, do not install applications that are not provided in the official store of your operating system.

8. Browse the Software Installed on the Device

Always check what applications and files are on your computer. Maybe, you will find something that you downloaded unknowingly, and it turns out the file is a Trojan or other malware that was downloaded through a 'backdoor'. In this case, uninstall and the program or file in question.

9. Scan your website for malware

If you already have a website and believe that your website contains malware that might harm users, scan your website and use some of the best malware remover software.


A Trojan or Trojan Horse virus is a program that can cause serious damage to your device. This virus disguises itself as a program that looks ordinary, but turns out to carry malware that can take over control of the device, steal data and delete files.

In fact, Trojans can install viruses and other malicious programs or control your computer so that it falls into a zombie network that spreads malicious files. To avoid Trojan viruses, always remember the following security measures:

  • Use the best antivirus program
  • Scan your device frequently for malware
  • Update the operating system and applications
  • Use a strong and unique password
  • Don't download files carelessly, including from email
  • Avoid accessing suspicious websites
  • Don't click on a link if you're not sure of its origin

If you still have questions or comments, please tell us via the comments section below!

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