Rumors surrounding the passage of viruses to school-issued Surfaces have become increasingly common in the halls and GPS rooms. CCU technician Brian Schauf said that use of illegitimate media streaming websites has led to a rise in Surfaces infected with malware.
“It [malware] can prevent you from using your web browser at all,” Schauf said. “Serious malware can affect your machine to where it randomly shuts off.”
Schauf said that if the malware is affecting the web browser, problems can be remedied by deleting and reinstalling the web browser.
“For more of the serious issues, which is what we are seeing here, the only way to fix it is to wipe it and reinstall Windows 10,” Schauf said.
Students’ use of media streaming websites such as 123movies.watch, among others, has led to this malware issue. Schauf said there are hundreds of these illegitimate websites available. Deciding whether or not a streaming website is safe for use can come down to the URL.
“If it looks like a weird URL, it is probably not safe,” Schauf said. “Use legitimate websites. YouTube is a great one if you want to watch videos, as well as Netflix, Hulu and other trusted streaming sites.”
Rumors have circulated that YouTube is among the sources of the viruses, but Schauf said this is not true.
“YouTube is not causing the viruses,” Schauf said. “YouTube is a safe place to watch videos. We have been wanting students to stay off of YouTube—especially in GPS—to listen to music because it is causing a bandwidth issue. It is a separate subject.”