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Checking for Infections with VirusTotal

Tuesday, October 7th, 2008 by | Filed Under: Security Help


As I’m sure some of you know, not all antivirus programs will find every virus. Some antivirus programs will call a virus by a different name, while other programs miss a virus threat altogether.

The makers of antivirus software do their best to make sure their product will detect every virus out there, but that’s not always 100 percent possible. While it would be nice to have two antivirus programs on your computer, that’s not a good idea either. So, what can you do if you want a second opinion?

I got to thinking about that today after receiving a strange attachment in my e-mail. I scanned the file with my antivirus software, but it found no infections. For some reason, I still felt like something fishy was going on.

I started looking online for another way to check files for viruses and that’s when I found VirusTotal. It’s exactly what I was looking for!

VirusTotal allows you to upload a file so that they can check it for viruses. The Web site will not just check it once, but it will actually check it with 36 different antivirus programs to ensure it’s virus free.


I took the strange file I received and uploaded it to Virus Total. The Web site scanned the file and found no infections. I was glad to see that it was a safe attachment and I’m also glad I found such an awesome site!

Feel free to check it out the next time you want a second opinion on a file that may be infected. Until next time, stay safe out there, my friends!

~ Gary

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