What are Adware and Spyware? How do I Get Rid of Adware and Spyware?

What are Adware and Spyware?   How do I Get Rid of Adware and Spyware?

Advertising-supported software or as it’s more commonly known: adware, is software that automatically views, or downloads different types of advertising material to your computer after the installation of the software, or even while the program is running. Most adware is spyware because it has the ability to keep an eye on your browsing habits to help the intruders gain knowledge on where to place their advertisements. Spyware is software whose sole purpose is to observe and relay a computer user’s behaviour and personal information. Contrary to a virus, spyware does not usually self-replicate.

Manners of infection
The most common way for spyware to infest your computer is via careless downloading of software and e-mail attachments. If we mindlessly download and install unknown software, the installer additionally installs spyware without our consent. The distributor of the spyware usually presents the program as a useful utility – rogue antivirus software for example. Users download and install the software without immediately suspecting that it could cause their computer harm. The third way of distributing spyware involves tricking users to “download” the software by clicking on a link which seems to be harmless.

Manifestations on computer performance
If you notice that all of a sudden your home page is different, or if you see additional toolbars on your browser or several changes to your favourites list, there may be spyware on your computer. Another manifestation of spyware infection is if you are seeing pop-up ads that seem to be unrelated to the website that you are viewing. You may also see advertisements when you’re not browsing the Web. Furthermore, if your computer is slower than usual or your computer is taking longer to load the Windows desktop, your computer might also be infected with spyware.

Damage dealt on the users
Spyware infection can make your computer slow down significantly through additional CPU activity, disk usage, and network traffic. It can also cause applications to freeze and crash. Spyware also causes difficulty connecting or completely prevents connecting to the Internet. More dangerously, some spyware disables software firewalls and anti-virus software to open the system to further infection. Spyware can also log your keystrokes and capture user names, passwords, credit card and other personal information from your computer.

Removal
Once infected, the best way to remove spyware and other malware on your computer is a full reinstallation of the operating system. Other than this drastic solution, there are several very good antivirus and antispyware software programs that are available on the market.  Read our full, detailed AntiVirus Software Reviews and Compare the top AntiVirus Sofware on the market side-by-side. They can provide real-time protection against the installation of spyware software on your computer. Anti-spyware software programs can also be used solely for detection and removal of spyware software that has already been installed onto your computer.

Avoidance
The best way to avoid unwanted spyware installation is to avoid clicking on pop-up ads. They are very annoying and we all just want to get rid of them, but you must close it via the taskbar so you don’t actually touch the pop-up with your cursor. Another way to avoid spyware is to never click on any unknown attachments delivered via e-mails. You should also check the reputability of a web site from which you intend to download any kind of files.  Try your best to only download on your trusted websites.

Looking for the best AntiVirus Software? Read our Antivirus Software Reviews, and Compare the Top Antivirus Software side-by-side to find the best fit for your needs.



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