Spyware has been around for quite some time and continues to do damage to most of the computer and internet users out there. Good thing there are now anti-spyware products available to fight these unfriendly programs. It is a good practice to have one, especially the heavy internet users, because you cannot really be sure of the safety and protection your computer has.
There are several anti-spyware programs out there. Some examples are Spybot, Spy Sweeper, CounterSpy, and the latest Microsoft Anti-Spyware which is still in its beta phase. Some of them offer free trial period, some needs to be purchased outright. But before downloading any anti-spyware products, especially the free ones, make sure first that those are legitimate programs.
There are spyware programs that mask as an anti-spyware, and before you know it, you already have that nasty application running on your system. So how do you make sure that you are downloading the right product? A good suggestion is do your homework. Research on the product and try to get as much reviews as you can about it. It will not probably hurt to spend quite some time on doing this. After all, what you are after is the protection of your data in your computer.
These anti-spyware products are no different than your usual anti-virus programs. What they do is scan your computer for any malicious files or codes. Then when it finds one, you can either disable the program or totally remove it. On installing them, first make sure that all the installation files are present. It is best not to run any other programs when installing the anti-spyware program. When it finishes installing and asks to restart the computer, do as it says so it can refresh the program and your files as well and complete the installation process.
Again, just like anti-virus programs, it is always recommended that your anti-spyware program is always updated. It is best to run an update everyday, if possible, so it can get any new information about lates spyware releases. Keep in mind that an anti-spyware works because of the spyware signatures it has in its database. If the database is not updated, it will not be able to fix your computer should the problem be a recently released spyware program. Bottomline is, always be updated.
Now, once the update for the day has completed. It is best to do a search on your computer for any new spyware files that may have gotten in your system. It will inform the user of certain files that it found containing malicious codes. You have an option to remove them or just quarantine them.
What is the difference between the two? When you quarantine a malicious file, like a spyware, the anti-spyware program will only temporarily disable them from spying your computer. Those files will still not be removed from your system. Thus, it is recommended to totally remove them to finally get rid of those unwanted files. There may be times that after removing a spyware file, some programs may not run properly anymore. That just means that those programs share a similar file with that of the spyware and may also be a threat to your computer. So it is advisable to also remove those programs even if they may seem legitimate and useful to you. There are a lot of programs out there anyway. You may still find similar programs that are truly genuine and do not have a piggybacking spyware file.
The things mentioned above are just some tips on how to get the most out of your anti-spyware products. Further research on your selected programs will still prove very helpful in resolving the issues that come with spyware files.
Source: WHP Security