Is your computer Slow ? Unstable ? Acting up weird ?
it’s must possible that you’ve been infected by Spyware or Virus.
Spyware is computer software that collects personal information about users without their informed consent,
Spyware usually serve Advertising companies who use the information collected from your keystrokes,web browsing & Documents scanning to serve you Opt-in Ads on your browser / popup windows / Instant Messengers and other ways.
there are also several Spywares who will look for more secure information such as Cached Passwords or Credit Card Information
in hope to find and abuse them later on in the future.
Other then the Instant dangers with Spywares, Multiple spyware agents on a single computer (What usually happens very quick if you’re downloading Freewares, Trials & Demos on popular sites)
Can Slowdown your computer, corrupt system files and on some rare occasions it can even do physical damage to your Hard Drive by Searching & Writing on the same location over and over again (Similar to viruses).
More Reading information can be found at Wikipedia’s definition to Spyware
After we understand what is Spyware we need to know how to fight it.
So we need our own Softwares to help us fight those bad spys.
To do so we need at least 2 or more tools to do Cross scanning for us and help us fight spyware.
I personally recommend the following 2, as they are Free, Clean from viruses & both has daily updates to help you fight with spywares.
1. Spybot – Search & Destroy, 100% FREE in vary of languages
2.Ad-Aware from Lavasoft – There’s a free version which Google offers aswell with their tools
After downloading and updating both to the must up-to-date Definition file all you have to do is run them and let them Find and Suggest what to do with the results.
If you’re Paranoid about your privacy and what to double check
everything up you can take a step forward and do the following steps to make sure no traces of spyware left:
Go to “My Computer”, Left Click with the mouse – choose properties, from there go to “System Restore” tab, and cancel system restore. Make sure your Anti spyware programs are up to date and restore your computer in safe-mod (You know.. reset it, and hit F5 key like there’s no tomorrow)
Run 2 or more Anti Spyware programs in safe-mod and clean whatever it finds, this will ensure that nothing will be left after the cleaning procedure, then you can feel free to Reboot the computer again and let it go into normal boot (it will automatically do that anyway). if you care about the system restore you can turn it back now, when it’s all clean, otherwise feel free to keep it cancelled.
I Would also recommend you download and run a Freeware program called Hijackthis It will scan all the programs that loads and currently running in the background, it might assist you in finding and fighting spyware and other computer menaces.
After Download this application and performing a scan you can Upload the results to the following website and it will tell you whats dangerous and whats not.
Hijackthis Log Analyzer
This should leave your computer clean of spywares, i recommend you to update and run your system definition file and anti-spyware tool every now and then, just to keep everything running smooth
Below you can find a self compiled list of FREEWARE antivirus and AntiSpyware centers, all are based Online and except Definitions you dont have to install anything on your computer, all of them are from well established and trusted companies.
Trend Micro – Free online virus Scan
Panda ActiveScan ‘“ Free online antivirus to combat viruses…
BitDefender Free Online Virus Scan
eTrust Antivirus Web Scanner
Free Virus Scan – Kaspersky Lab
Symantec Security Check
- Webroot Spy Sweeper – an up-close look
- The Home Computer Security Glossary
- Securing your Home Network – the least you need to know
- Global Shutdown down day reminder.
- Fixing Windows using a Live Linux CD – part one