The bad guys in our digital equipment world are mini-programs of all sorts — often called viruses — that invade, infect, and incapacitate our computers. The medical metaphor is apt because digital viruses replicate and multiply just like those that infect the human body.
Different types of intrusive programs exist, though sometimes all are generically referred to as viruses. Another term, malware (short for malicious software), is often the umbrella term for the entire category.
A Few Important Terms