No doubt about it: Spyware rivals spam as a cause of frustration among PC owners.
If you’ve ever had your computer reduced to a crashing and freezing blob, you know what it’s like to deal with spyware. Spyware feeds on our worst fears about computers—that the machine, this unknowable mass of plastic, metal and ever-mysterious code, is being taken over by unseen and malevolent forces. In the case of spyware, that’s pretty much true.
Spyware is a type of software installed surreptitiously on PCs, often as a way of gathering information about you or displaying ads without your permission. (Sometimes, both.) It is installed without your permission, typically when downloading another application, and then proceeds to disrupt your computer. As if that were not enough, spyware often sprays bits of computer code into the far corners of your machine in an effort to prevent its easy removal.
It is as if someone entered your home when you were at the mall, installed undetectable devices to track your food consumption, and altered your TV set to interrupt “Lost” with ads about potato chips.
You couldn’t live like that. You would go crazy, not knowing when your favorite TV show would be zapped to oblivion by an illicit advertisement. You would demand action.
So take action—with an anti-spyware program.
- Webroot Spy Sweeper
Spyware programs can be pretty smart, and Webroot Spy Sweeper is recognized as a leader in helping consumers to track down spyware on their computers.
- Microsoft Windows Defender
Windows Defender will monitor your computer and provide recommendations when it determines a potential spyware threat.
- PC Tools Spyware Doctor
Detect. Remove. Block. That pretty much sums up Spyware Doctor’s attitude toward spyware.