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 ‘spyware’. 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.
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 recommend are ‘Spybot – Search and Destroy’, made by Patrick Kolla, and ‘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 free versions.
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.
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 available.
About the Author:
Muna wa Wanjiru is a Web Administrator and has been researching and reporting on Internet for years. To Post Your Comments on spyware remover, visit his blog.