A crack or an activator refers to any piece of software that is used to illegally activate another application. Normally, when users want to use a program, they have to buy a license and then activate the program with the activation key that they have. Unfortunately, a lot of users resort to using illegal means to obtain and utilize programs. For that, they tend to use crack activators. And while the use of such tools is illegal by itself, it can also be dangerous because it could lead to data theft and malware infection.
Technically, crack tools are called “riskware” because of the risk their use poses to users and the software industry. The problem is that while crack software itself might not be malicious, it could be bundled with additional software that could prove to be dangerous. After all, crack activators usually come from shady websites or torrent pages, where you can seldom check whether the activator’s components are safe or not. Thus, to avoid potential cybersecurity risks, it is necessary to refrain from using illegal programs, too.
Malware Infection Potential
You might be thinking that you’re just saving money when you download and crack a copyrighted software application. However, as mentioned above, cracked software can easily lead to a malware infection. Just last year, more than half a million computers were infected through one cracked app. According to research carried out by Digital Citizens Alliance, at least one-third of cracked or illegal software contains malware. Therefore, users clearly are only a click away from a dangerous infection when they choose to install cracked software.
What’s more, if you get a cracked program that contains malware, the infection might spread to your other devices that are connected to the same network. Worse, if you have several family devices connected to the same network, the infection might easily spread to devices that have little to do with you. Needless to say, it includes all the smart devices on the Internet of things, too.
The main issues with crack and activators aside, we have to remember that there is no guarantee that a cracked program would work. Purchasing the program legally will not only allow you to run a program properly, but you would also be eligible for customer support if you run into actual software issues. Not to mention that when you use a crack or activator to launch a program, that cracked program will not get all the vital updates that are necessary to fight vulnerabilities. And if a program’s vulnerabilities do not get patched, they could be exploited by malevolent third parties to hack your system or steal your personal information.
Finally, aside from getting infected with malware and being plagued by faulty programs, you also have to consider that using a crack activator can simply lead to legal problems. After all, using a copyrighted software application illegally is technically a crime. For instance, if you use a crack activator to play a pirated game, you might eventually find yourself banned from the game platform for good, especially if you need to connect to a network to play the game. Also, if it happens that you get caught using illegal software, in some instances, you may also pay a hefty fine.
All kinds of activity leaves traces online, so you need to be responsible and fair when you acquire and use programs. Steer clear from crack activators because it can lead to multiple security and legal issues. And if you want to check whether your system is safe and clean, you can always run a full computer scan with a powerful anti-malware tool.
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|Name||Threat Level||Detection Count||Date|
|Malicious Cracks||80 % (High)||92,906||May 3, 2013|