There is a simple test developed by the European Institute of Computer Anti-virus Research (EICAR) and known as the EICAR test. So now you can test the basic (and we mean basic) working of your anti-virus package, on any platform.
Open a plain text editor and copy the following code into a blank document:
Save the file with any name you like, but with a .com extension – like myavtest.com
Now run the anti-virus scan on this myavtest.com file.
If your anti-virus is working correctly, then you should get a warning or alert immediately. Your AV software will either want to quarantine or delete it. If you get warning or alert then you either need to re-install your anti-virus package or change it for one that works.
What Goes On
The EICAR test file won’t harm your pc. It contains a test string with a display string which will print on-screen if you run the .com file on its’ own. It was created by the anti-virus industry as a standardized test for A-V developers, not for end users and should not be taken as an effective measure of your software’s capability. The Eicar test file is recognized by all the anti-virus products and they all should block it.
What it will prove is whether your anti-virus program has been infected. If the anti-virus program doesn’t detect the string, then there is a chance a virus has already infiltrated and sabotaged. This doesn’t guarantee that your system is free of viruses, either. AJS