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It wasn't long ago that a "virus" was an illness spread among people, but now it can also cause problems for your computer.

“I have noticed a great increase in the number of people coming in just in the last month," says computer shop co-owner Tracey Province.

As many as 300 new computer viruses pop up every month with even more being written every day, and that's why business is booming in places like "pit" computers, which services as well as sells computers.

"Some people think they have one virus, when they have seven or eight or more," says Province. "We've seen up to 18 or 19 on a single machine."

Sending and passing on infected e-mails, logging onto infected websites, and while it's now considered illegal for music lovers, file-sharing.

While they're popular and prevalent, Province says the anti-virus mechanisms on computers aren't necessarily effective in completely eliminating computer viruses.

"If the databases are not updated frequently, I have mine updated nearly every day, then they're pretty much useless. There's new ones being written every day, so they get a false sense of security."

While it's the computers that are going in for service, province says most virus problems are software-related, and province reminds us the best way to keep computer viruses from spreading, is to avoid opening mail from unfamiliar sources, as well as surfing websites you know and trust.