You’ve heard all kinds of terrible things about it, but just what IS it – and how does it get on your computer in the first place?
Spyware is a real pain in the arse, to put it bluntly. It bogs down your computer’s memory, causes you to be spammed to death with pop-up ads, and tracks everywhere you go while you surf the web! Worst of all, 99% of all spyware downloads itself to your computer without your knowledge – or your consent.
Can they do that? Yes, unfortunately, they can – but you don’t have to sit back while your computer is destroyed with malicious software. Spyware scanners and removal programs are a must on any computer that gets online.
But, first, let’s talk a little more about spyware – and what it truly is.
Broadbandinfo.com makes things a little clearer:
Spyware–gathers information about Internet users without their knowledge or consent and delivers that information to advertisers or others who have access to the information. Users can get spyware in their systems by downloading certain programs or in the form of a virus.
Sort of scary, isn’t it? There are two main ways to “get” spyware:
- It downloads itself into your computer, without your knowledge or consent, when you visit a certain website or click on a certain pop-up ad.
- It downloads itself to your computer along with something you chose to download, usually under the guise of “free extras” – you may or may not (usually not) be notified that the extra content is included with the download.
Short of never downloading anything, or ceasing to ever surf online again, the only sure way to keep your computer clean of spyware is to periodically “clean” it up with a good spyware removal program. The only true, and reliable, preventative measures that can be taken are to never click on pop-up ads and to be careful of where you surf – regardless, though, you are always going to end up with some spyware.
One of the things about spyware that people don’t realize is that most of it is programs. That’s right, it’s a program running in the background of your machine – eating up your resources. You can imagine what would happen if you had hundreds (and without a removal program, you will) – eventually your computer would be inoperable – slow as a snail, for want of a better term.
Since spyware is inevitable – as much so as taxes and death these days – you’d best go ahead and download a few reputable spyware removal programs on your pc.