What Is a Trojan Horse Attack and Prevention Tips

trojan horse

According to the war story of Trojan, a group of Greek warriors hid inside the huge wooden horse as the rest of the army left. The Trojan army thought that the huge wooden horse is a surrender gift from the Greek army and brought the whole structure inside their safety walls.

While the whole Trojan army was celebrating their victory the Greek soldiers climbed out of the huge horse and delivered a devastating sneak attack.

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The modern hackers inspired with this story introduced malware called the Trojan horse. In a Trojan malware attack, hackers use some software or even documents that need to be installed on your computer. These types of malware are developed to fool people.

Trojans are relatively easy to spot and avoid as compared to other malware. If you are looking for some ways and tips to avoid Trojan horse attacks some of them are given below in our guide.

How Does a Trojan Horse Malware Work and How Does It Spread?

Launching a cyberattack requires a lot of technical and time. In many cases, these attackers wipe some software or bring down the whole security system or release some worms which can spread across the whole network.

But this is a difficult task, some hackers have realized that it is easier to manipulate people into installing software directly into their system rather than releasing a worm.

how does trojan horse work

This is how a Trojan horse malware can spread into your desktop. There are many ways of how a Trojan horse can spread and infect your computer.

Through Spam Email Messages or Attachment

One of the easy ways through which a Trojan horse malware can enter your computer is through spam emails. You would have come across some weird looking emails from an individual you don’t know and sometimes these emails contain some attachments.

These types of harmless emails contain malware and if you download the document or open it you will begin the process of installation of Trojan horse malware.

Cracked or Freeware Software

Another way through which attackers can trick innocent individuals is by tricking them into installing freeware or cracked applications in the disguise of the real software. Cracked application from any untrusted site can lead to the installation of some malware into your computer.

Sharing of Files

Many people like to download movies and music from a torrent website because they are free but what they don’t know is these websites contain a ton of malware that harms their computer.

There is no way you can verify these files before downloading and this makes it straightforward for the hackers to spread Trojan horse.

Can Trojan Horse Malware Harm Your Smartphone?

The attacker uses the same trick they used to hack into your computers or desktops. Cybercriminals will use applications on an unofficial site or pirate play store.

The answer is yes. It is a time when most people handle their business through smartphones. Mobile phones are not safe from malware attacks, and they surely are not safe from Trojan horse malware.

You won’t get a Trojan if you download the app from iTunes or app store. It is mostly present on the sites where people go to find free APK of paid applications.

Different Types of Malware Can Enter Your Device with a Trojan

A Trojan horse is not a specific type of malware or virus. It is basically the delivery system that hackers use to get the virus into your device. The malware can be anything, but there are some common types of malware hackers use to disguise as a Trojan.


It is very dangerous to have spyware installed on your device or computer. As the name simplifies, the spyware is malware which gathers your useful information.

This information can be anything from your username or password, your bank details or card details, phone number which is mostly used to commit criminal activities.

Keylogger malware is a common threat. It can capture your every activity and can steal any information from your device.


On the other hand, ransomware does not collect any data from your computer or smartphone. It only encrypts your important data so that you won’t be able to you it.

In order to get access back to your data, you have to pay a ransom usually of a few hundred dollars. If you deny paying that amount all of your data will be deleted.


Zombieware is not very dangerous as compared to spyware and ransomware. It will only run in the background of your computer and turn your computer slow as a zombie. It means the hacker can take control of it whenever he/she wants.

Important Tips to Protect Your Device from Malware

Trojans are not that difficult to avoid if you know a little about them and practice safe browsing and internet behavior. Do these three things and you can lower your chances of getting a Trojan horse malware.

Do not download attachments from spam emails

If you get an email from an untrusted source and it contains some attachments don’t install or download it. You can also write an email to the sender asking for the context.

Avoid download from an untrusted source

Hackers love to trick people and make their malware look like free goodies. If you find a free version of expensive software or new movie there are chances that it contains malware.

Install a good antivirus

Most of the times good antivirus can prevent your device from Trojans. If you are afraid you have downloaded Trojan malware, you can always find and delete it from your device with the help of good antivirus.

Cyber hackers and criminals are making you fool by making you download their disguised Trojan in order to get your important data. The easiest way to avoid these types of attacks is by practicing safe internet practices. If you don’t trust a website or software you don’t have to download it.


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Author: Mark Bruno
Mark Bruno is not your typical computer geek. He has a degree in law and criminology, and always had a need for justice. Seeing how everything is getting digitalized, he decided to master cyber-security and virus protection with led him to join the LossOfPrivacy team.