By Andy Dawson

Hidden malware has infected computers while researchers believe vaping could also stimulate our natural bacteria

E-cigarettes might be better for you than their analogue equivalent, but they could seriously damage the health of your computer.

Reports are emerging that some of them have been found to contain malware that has infected their owners’ PCs when plugged in to charge.

Many e-cigarettes can be charged by being plugged into a USB port but if they’re pre-loaded with malware, it could lead to a nasty digital infection.

A report on Reddit says that a malware infection was traced to an e-cig after all other avenues had been explored.

The infected user said: “The made in China e-cigarette had malware hardcoded into the charger, and when plugged into a computer’s USB port the malware phoned home and infected the system.”

In recent years, malware has been found in lots of devices, ranging from digital photo frames to MP3 players.

If you’re a vaper who charges your e-cig using the USB port in a computer, you should keep your security software up to date and try to avoid cheaper, non-authentic products, with ones made in China rating high on the danger list.

As well as giving you a nasty virus, there’s also an increased chance of them overheating and catching fire, with more than 100 such incidents reported in the past two years.

Wales OnlineJust one example of the damage caused by an exploding e-cigarette
Just one example of the damage caused by an exploding e-cigarette

If that’s not bad enough, a new report has suggested that e-cigarettes could be damaging to the human body as well.

It is believed that vaping can help to trigger an increase in the activity of some of the bacteria that live naturally within our bodies.

They include the bacteria responsible for meningitis and MRSA, and one theory suggests that not only could vaping lead to them becoming more active, it could also make them more resistant to antibiotic treatment.

Obviously, e-cigarettes aren’t as dangerous as their conventional forerunners but it seems that we still have a lot to learn about their effects.

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