Spyware programs are all over the internet. It is not uncommon to hear new spyware popping up and corresponding solution being utilized every single day. Not only do these spyware programs show ads that we don’t want to see and collect our web surfing habits but steal our identity by harvesting every keystroke. For this reason, there is a need to understand what type of spyware we could be approached by and what they do to wreak havoc in our life.
Mere Information Collectors
This type of spyware sits quietly in the background and track every website that we visit. The websites are logged into a file which is, in worst case scenario, relayed to an outside computer. All this is done without the knowledge of the user and most people are not aware that it is the spyware that is slowing down their computers. Your personal and confidential information is relayed illegally. Many companies do their best to get rid of such spyware. For instance, preventive maintenance CMMS software utilizes sophisticated anti-spyware programs that come with maintenance and support as well.
These spyware programs run in the background and generates pop-up advertisements during website visits. For example, if you are visiting a website selling apparels, the spyware will generate ads connected to its affiliate apparel seller prompting you to click on the link provided on the ads. In other cases, the words on the website you visit becomes a link to these spyware ads.
Although spyware programs are collectively considered to be dangerous to some extent, nothing can come close to those that are designed to capture every keystroke that you enter on the website. These spywares collect your usernames and passwords from banking sites, or personal information from confidential forms and send them to a master site without your knowledge or permission. They even steal cookies from your computer and search hard drive looking for data that they could use.
The greatest threat from these spyware programs is that they are installed without you knowing anything about it. Sometimes it is in the form of script that asks for your permission to run, then installs itself no matter which option you choose. Other times it is through screensavers that you unwittingly installed. With screensavers and peer to peer file sharing, there is often a level of deception that goes beyond what you can imagine. In some cases, they are even bundled with free software as a bonus. In any case, they all fall to one or more categories like explained above. Unless you have a very effective antivirus running in the background, there is no way of knowing that the spyware is present.
Finally, a good anti-spyware mechanism in place will prevent most spyware programs entering your computer network. Keeping an eye on what you install is very important when it comes to safeguarding your computer. Remember that free anti-spyware software may offer basic protection but investing in a full protection package will go a long way.