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All you want to know about Spy Ware

Spy ware is a software program that watches what a user does on his computer. This program sends the information it has gathered on the users activities to a hacker over the internet. The information of the websites a user visits is collected and sent to advertisement agencies. More malicious spy ware can record all the keys that have been typed by the user. This method is used to gain passwords and credit card numbers of the user. Advertisement goals are furthered by Pop-Up advertisement and routing of HTTP requests to advertising sites.

How is your computer infected?
In most cases it is installed by the user.
• The user is a victim of social engineering. He/she is deceived by an explanation of some problem or vulnerability with their computer system. What follows is the user accepting the software to correct this vulnerability. In reality the user installs the spy ware.
• Some users are more informed. Spy ware is ‘made known’ and propagated as an anti-spy ware program. It is also bundled along with legitimate software so that users are tricked into installing the spy ware without even knowing of it. Some instances of these are Web Accelerator software,P2P softwares like Bonzi buddy, File trading programs, Music softwares and some shareware software.
• Internet users can be tricked into making unwanted installations. The internet web browser prevents unwanted downloads or installations. It pop up window appears with buttons “YES” and “NO”. No matter what choice the user makes the program downloads and then manipulates the security of the browser for spy ware activity.

Security holes in browser and other software’s
• Users navigate web pages on the internet. In case the user navigates a web page by a spy ware author, a part of the web page code attacks the weakness in the browser and forces the download and installation of spy ware. The user is just a bystander to the attack. Common browser exploits target vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer and Microsoft Java Run time Environment.
• Browser Helper Objects are an attachment to the browser. These are toolbars or attachments to redirect traffic. In a few cases these browser helper objects have been worms or viruses. W32.Spybot worm installs spy ware that pops up pornographic ads on the screen of the infected system.
• Trojans and worms are created to cause security holes in the softwares and operating systems. Advanced keyloggers that can send out information of every key typed can be installed through Trojans. This helps hackers get usernames and passwords. These are downloaded through open ports on the system and auto executes to install spy ware software as a part of its program.

Prevention and Removal of Spy Ware
Prevention of spy ware is simple
• Ensure that your operating system and application software is patched and protected against known security vulnerabilities. Look up Microsoft website and run the windows update to install patches that are marked critical
• Read the End Users License agreement carefully. There might be information that states that certain information is forwarded to its home site and provides the reasons for the same. Check online to find reviews on the software and information being forwarded to the home site before installing the software.
• Look up the email help center to configure your system such that it cannot install programs automatically.
• Use professional software for proactively blocking ad ware and spy ware threats. Download ad ware and spy ware removers. Ad-Ad ware from Lavasoft and Spybot are two softwares that have received good reviews. There are many other softwares, before buying them it would advisable to look for its reviews on the net or ask some one who is knowledgeable in this area if they would recommend the anti-spy ware software you want to buy. Free spyware detection and free spyware removal software may contain spyware so beware of such products.

About the Author: gives us information on where spyware comes from and how spywares work? Browser helper objects ,
Free spyware detection etc…tell you more about the propagation of spyware on the internet. Covert installations can damage your computer read to find out more.

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