By Matt Gephardt
(KUTV) When San Francisco and Baltimore hit the grid-iron Sunday, it will be more than just the players taking hits. So, too, will be many of the people watching the game says Patrick Morganelli. Morganelli is the senior vice president for Enigma Software which makes the Spy Hunter Anti-Spyware program.
He says that, if history is any indication, there will be a surge in the number of malware infected computers on Super Bowl Sunday. In 2012, his company saw a 21% increase in computer infections on game day. The reason: people see a big football play or maybe a funny commercial and then many will quickly swarm to the internet to see it again. That's where the crooks are waiting to pounce.
"Malware authors understand how web traffic works and they want to infect as many machines as possible," Morganelli says.
Malware on a computer will often steal personal information and passwords and transmit them to an unknown crook.
"It's kind of scary," says Dan Young, owner of P.C. Laptops in Utah. P.C. Laptops offers free virus scans to anyone that brings in a computer they want checked.
Young says he is not at all surprised there is an anticipated malware spike for Sunday. “Whenever there is any sort of reason that people are going to be searching for something on the internet … suddenly all these different sites come up with ways to steal your information.”
Young says that the best way to avoid malware is to be proactive and install virus protection software, like Spy Hunter.
"[Malware] is a little bit harder to remove after the fact then to have preventative maintenance by having good software to prevent that installed already," Young says.
Signs that your computer may be infected with malware include random pop-ups, or even just your machine running slowly. More information on malware can be found at SpyWareRemove.com
(Copyright 2013 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)