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Defensive tactic employed against viruses. Anti-virus software can often detect viruses which it cannot repair automatically.. In such cases the simplest option is to delete the file, but better quality anti-virus programs offer the option to Quarantine the file. This involves removing the file from its current location, encrypting it, and locking it in the quarantine area, ie part of the disk which is not accessible by any application except the anti-virus program, and certain disk utility tools.

Once in quarantine the anti-virus utility programs may be able to open the file and examine the contents to allow a user to extract any useful information, or, if sufficiently skilled, to remove the virus and effect a manual repair of the file.

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