If you regularly or even occasionally use the internet, chances are you’ve come
across an annoying and malicious set of programs affectionately referred to by computer users as
Like ‘adware’, spyware programs track your internet usage, collect personal
information, spawn ‘pop-up’ advertisements, and can even alter your internet browser settings.
Spyware generally refers the kinds of adware that are covertly installed onto your
computer without your consent.
Recommended Spyware Remover Programs
Many spyware programs will cause your computer to slow down in its performance,
and may even cause lock-ups and crashes.
For this reason I highly recommend using a spyware remover on a regular basis to
help keep your computer working at it’s best.
There are a number of spyware removers available today, and the two I most highly
- ‘Spybot – Search and
Destroy’, made by Patrick Kolla,
- ‘Ad-Aware SE’ produced by Lavasoft.
Both of these programs are available in a basic form free of charge. More advanced
forms of the programs are available for a small fee, however I have personally been more than happy with just the
Windows Spyware Remover
In more recent times, Microsoft has jumped into the spyware remover business and
has released a free update for Windows XP, Windows 2003, and Windows 2000 called the ‘Windows AntiSpyware Beta’.
Like all beta programs, it is in its testing stage, but is intended to be released as a free product for Window’s
users sometime in the near future. One major benefit of the Microsoft spyware remover is it is often able to detect
and halt spyware as it is being installed, whereas most other spyware removers are normally only able to catch
spyware after it is already on your computer.
Your Own Research
Be wary when looking for a good spyware remover. There are many advertisements
today for spyware removers that are misleading, and there are some phony programs that actually install spyware of
their own if you use them! For this reason, its unadvisable to use any spyware remover that you see advertised in a
‘pop-up’ add, or other flashy and obnoxious advertisement, as these are often the programs to be wary of. Before
using a spyware remover, do some research on it online, there are many online communities and forums that discuss
which spyware removers are good and which ones are potentially harmful.
No single spyware remover is perfect; you may find better success with some over
others. A good overall strategy is run more than one program to increase your chances of keeping spyware free. I
run both Spybot and Ad-Aware at least once a week, and install updates for these programs whenever they are
Computer Spyware Articles:
- Adware - When you use your computer for
online work, reasearch and entertainment, you will end up with adware being installed ony our computer without
your consent. These could be harmless tracking programs, or nasty monitors of your online
- Botnets - This is probably one of the works threats to your computer
system, difficult to locate and even harder to delete when infection occurs. Botnets are often used by hackers
to infiltrate computers and use them as a network to propagate viruses and spam, to infect other
- Spyware - Often used in advertising, these spying programs infest possibly
some 80% of computers, mostly unknown to their owners. Often a dozen or more of spyware programs can be found
on any computer, tracking user's online habits.
- CounterSpy - Being generally a nuissance, spyware is a booming industry,
using agressive advertising and spying tactics on you. One of the best spyware removal programs is CounterSpy,
by Sunbelt Software.
Programs - You already have learned that many spware programs could be infesting your
computer right now. There are 3 basic ways in which you get these programs: freeware and shareware, deceptive
downloads, and security holes.
- Intelligent Explorer - Although a rare threat today, masquerading as
Internet Explorer toolbar, this deceptive software program will generate a lot of unwanted popups and downloads
without your permission.
Remover Programs - Spyware programs track your internet usage, collect personal data,
and spawn popup advertisements. This can cause your computer to slow down, or worse. Windows Spyware Remover,
Ad-Aware, and Spybot can all help you delete spyware from your computer.