A few days ago, I was hosting a movie night at my place and I wanted to use my Xbox Series X to stream a film. I downloaded a random movie app from the web browser and my friends and I had a pretty good time.
A few days later I noticed that my console took a lot longer to boot up and I was getting weird pop-ups in my notification center.
I did the usual checks – switched it on/off, disconnected the internet but nothing seemed to make a difference. I talked to my friend about this and he said that my console may have a virus.
I laughed it off at first, but then I actually thought about what he said. I did some reading around and this is what I found:
Can The Xbox Series X Get A Virus? Yes, the Xbox Series X console can get a virus! But it is extremely rare because only an Xbox-specific virus can infect your console. These viruses are usually sent out by scammers to Xbox users, and they are trying to obtain precious user information; name, address, and bank details.
Although rare, you could potentially download an Xbox-specific virus that could lead to your console’s operating system becoming corrupted. Read on to see what these Xbox-specific viruses are.
What Type Of Viruses Can You Get On An Xbox Series X?
The creators of Xbox have always taken security and virus protection very seriously. So much so, that only console-specific viruses appear to impact the Xbox family.
So, if this is the case how does a virus get into an Xbox? Interestingly this is how…
A while ago Microsoft allowed the web browser Microsoft Edge to be used on the Xbox One console. It sounded like a good idea, and after all, what harm could be done… Well, when you give people the freedom to browse on the web, you also give scammers plenty of opportunities to scam their way into your console.
Simply put, scammers find ways via the internet to lull people into giving them easy access to their Xbox operating systems. Innocent players typically get fooled into downloading malware, spyware, worms, and trojan viruses onto their consoles.
This is more commonly known as a ‘phishing attack’. And the main goal of this virus is to ‘phish’ for credit card and personal information. Typically, by the end of this little episode scammers end up laughing all the way to the bank, and Xbox users are left with a corrupted console and a fund-free bank account!
Microsoft, obviously, takes this type of attack very seriously, and it does everything necessary to avoid this from happening. But, if the problem should occur, what should you look out for? Keep on reading to learn what the signs are!
How Do I Know If My Xbox Series X Has A Virus?
It’s not like you’ll get a notification saying, “You’ve Got A Virus!” (Or maybe you will, who knows?), but there are some signs that you should be on the lookout for! Here’s how an Xbox Series X with a virus will behave:
- Your console will start lagging!
You may notice that your FPS suddenly drop, especially in offline games, if this is the case it’s almost guaranteed that your console has a virus.
Why? Because consoles, and especially the Xbox Series X, shouldn’t ever have FPS drop-offs when you play in single-player mode offline. In essence, there is no reason for a game to lag when playing offline on a console, unless there is a virus present!
- You’ll get weird notifications asking you to click on them
We’ve all seen weird ads on web pages asking us to click on them, and the same kind of thing may come up on an Xbox Series X console if a virus is present.
If you see something like ‘Earn $1000 in 10 minutes’ or ‘Desperate singles in your area’ being advertised, alarm bells should start ringing in your head.
You should not have any links like these on your console’s dashboard. If they suddenly start appearing in your notification bar, your console is likely to have a virus. Do Not click on these links!
- You might get kicked from online sessions
All online games have anti-cheat software active to make sure all players are playing the game fairly. If you get kicked from an online session for ‘using cheating software,’ and you know you’re playing fair, then it means your console might have a virus.
You need to investigate what’s being detected or you won’t be able to play online!
If you suspect your console has a virus, it’s time to remove it! Read on to find out how you remove a virus from your Xbox Series X console.
How Do I Remove A Virus From My Xbox Series X?
If you are certain your Xbox Series X console has a virus, you need to remove it as soon as possible in order to avoid further disruption!
The anti-malware software in your Xbox Series X is amazing, so your priority should be to check if any security updates are available. If there’s an update available, click it. Not sure what to do? Check out this article here for more help!
The odds are that the improved anti-malware software that you’ve just updated will remove the virus automatically.
If there is no visible improvement, even after updating your console, it’s time to call in the big guns.
It’s time to hard reset your Xbox Series X with the help of Xbox Support. This kind of reset will remove all your data from the console, including the virus. Make sure you backup all your save files to the Xbox Live Cloud, so you can continue where you left off after the reset!
After resetting your Xbox Series X, just sign back into your Xbox account and download your games again!
So, now you’ve gotten rid of the silly virus, how do you make sure that you keep it and any other viruses away? Read on and I’ll tell you how to avoid getting a virus on your Xbox Series X.
How To Avoid Getting A Virus On Your Xbox Series X?
As I mentioned before, it’s extremely rare to get a virus on an Xbox Series X, but it’s not impossible. Here are some tips that can help you to avoid getting a virus on your console:
Never accept strange friend requests
Hackers usually create numerous fake accounts on consoles, and then they send random friend requests to hundreds of Xbox accounts. You might think that they can’t do much harm to you by sending you a friend request, but you’re wrong.
If you accept their friend request they will know that your account is active. And if they know that your account is being used, they will try to hack it in order to obtain your credit card information, or they may make you download a virus onto your system.
Don’t click on links
If you do decide to befriend strangers on the internet, never click on links they send you. These links may contain viruses. They usually tempt you with freebies but NEVER fall for it! There is no such thing as free, unless you are offered free games, or game items, by the official Microsoft store.
Don’t provide your personal information on game chats
Don’t disclose any information that makes you easily hackable. Don’t give out usernames and passwords to strangers that send you friend requests, or chat with you in-game. Everything about you, from your bank account to your Xbox account, should be kept private.
Change your login details regularly
Keep changing your login information. This will limit the chance of someone using your ID.
Keep an eye on what friends do on your console
Your friends might unintentionally click on links that are sent to you. This may lead to your console getting a virus. Keep an eye on who’s clicking what when you allow other people to use your console.
Don’t trust individual ‘Sellers’
You will find many people in games telling you that they can sell you items very cheaply. After you agree to buy goods from them, they then ask you for your Xbox login information. Never trust such sellers. All of your transactions should be through the official Microsoft Store on the Xbox.
Always keep your system up to date
Microsoft uses the NanoVisor operating system for the Xbox Series X. The security measures are pretty strict, and there is an extremely low chance of getting a virus, unless you allow peculiar files to be downloaded on your console.
You will get regular security updates by Microsoft for your Xbox Series X console, make sure you keep your console up to date by downloading and allowing these updates to take place as soon as possible!
Educate yourself about viruses and popular scams through blogs and forums. Usually, users share their concerns on online forums, because they are looking for help when they run into trouble. Make sure you follow Xbox Series X forums and learn from other people’s mistakes.
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