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How To Test Your Anti-Virus Software


Have you ever wondered if your anti-virus software is really working?


Would you like to see what happens when it detects a virus?

Here's a safe way to test your computer's virus protection that doesn't require you to have a real virus.

First, open Notepad. Then copy and paste into it the text on the line below. (It should all be on one line.)

X5O!P%@AP[4\PZX54(P^)7CC)7}$EICAR-STANDARD-ANTIVIRUS-TEST-FILE!$H+H*

Then select File, Save, select All Files for the file type, then save the file as eicar.com.

Your anti-virus software may prevent you from saving the file as eicar.com,which is a sign that it is working effectively. If it doesn't raise an alert, try scanning the folder where you saved eicar.com.

To see what happens if you try to run a file containing a virus, double-click eicar.com to open it.

Explanation The file eicar.com you have created is completely safe. It is not a virus. It is a standard test file developed by the European Institute for Computer Anti-virus Research (EICAR).

All anti-virus products are programmed to detect this file as if it was a real virus. Therefore you can safely use it to test whether your anti-virus software works, without fear of infecting your computer.

If your anti-virus product should fail to prevent you from running the file, it will simply display the text"EICAR-STANDARD-ANTI-VIRUS-TEST-FILE" in a DOS box.

No harm will have been done, but you should probably consider using a better anti-virus product, because if it had been a real virus, your computer would by now be infected!



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