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Avoid Spyware

Protecting your computer from Adware and Spyware
With today’s increased use of the internet and broadband, computers are at risk of being infected by unwanted and dangerous programs such as Adware, Spyware and Trojans, we are taking this opportunity to inform you of FREE measures you can take to overcome some of these problems.

All computers should at least have an up-to-date antivirus program which must be updated on a regular basis, as well as Anti-Adware and Spyware programs. (Do not install two different types of antivirus programs at the same time as this can cause major problems.)

Adware/Spyware has reached epidemic proportions. Spyware is a general term used for software that performs certain behaviours such as advertising, collecting personal information, or changing the configuration of your computer, generally without appropriately obtaining your consent. They may also change your homepage and attempt to re-direct your searches to their search engines. This type of Adware/Spyware is NOT covered by Anti-virus software.

What is Adware?
Adware can do a number of things, from profiling your online surfing and spending habits to popping up annoying ad windows as you surf. In some cases Adware has been bundled with other software without the user's knowledge or slipped in the fine print of a EULA (End User License Agreement) that you’ve downloaded. Not all Adware is bad, but often users are annoyed by Adware's intrusive behaviour. Keep in mind that by removing Adware sometimes the program it came bundled with for free may stop functioning. Many times users have no idea they have installed the application. Often Adware writers make their applications difficult to uninstall.

What is Spyware?
Spyware is potentially more dangerous than Adware because it can record your keystrokes, history, passwords and other confidential and private information. Spyware covertly gathers user information and activity without the user's knowledge. Spy software can record your keystrokes as you type them, passwords, credit card numbers, sensitive information, where you surf, chat logs, and can even take random screenshots of your activity. Basically, whatever you do on the computer is completely viewable by the spy.

Several companies offer free and low-cost software that will check your computer for spyware and other unwanted software and help you remove it. The following are some freeware (downloadable free of charge) programs that you could install and use regularly to check your computer.

1. Lavasoft Ad-Aware Personal
www.lavasoftusa.com
Ad-Aware Personal can provide protection from known data-mining, aggressive advertising, Trojans, diallers, malware, browser hijackers, and tracking components.

2. Spybot Search and Destroy
www.spybot.info/en/mirrors/index.html
Spybot - Search & Destroy can detect and remove spyware of different kinds from your computer.

3. Malwarebytes
www.malwarebytes.org
Malwarebytes is a site dedicated to fighting malware. Malwarebytes has developed a variety of tools that can identify and remove malicious software from your computer. When your computer becomes infected, Malwarebytes can provide the needed assistance to remove the infection and restore the machine back to optimum performance

 

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