Antispyware is a type of computer software that is typically designed to detect and remove malicious or threatening programs from a computer. These programs are often referred to as spyware, indicating their propensity to collect and send an individual’s personal information to third parties without their consent. Anti-spyware is available in many formats and at many different price points.
Anti-spyware helps protect your computer from malicious programs.
Spyware is a type of malicious program, also called malware, that sends information from a computer to a third party without the user’s knowledge or consent. The type of data retrieved by these programs varies, but many collect information about a user’s Internet browsing habits, online shopping, and even keystrokes, such as passwords. In addition, these programs can change your computer’s settings and functionality. Anti-spyware seeks to block or remove these programs.
Windows users are encouraged to regularly scan their computers and laptops for spyware.
There are two main ways antispyware works. The first is real-time spyware capture. This system verifies computer transactions coming from the Internet. When it detects potential spyware, it tries to block it before the malicious program has a chance to lodge in the root directory or another area of the computer. This real-time detection typically occurs at download time.
The second type of antispyware uses an updatable list of known spyware to protect a computer. Many users frequently download new versions of this registry to keep their protection software up to date. Instead of blocking potentially dangerous programs from downloading, this type of software detects and removes those that have already been loaded on your computer.
Antispyware of this type typically scans your operating system’s registry, programs, and files. It then compares these files with its list of known malware. If a file matches one in the list, antispyware will usually isolate and remove it.
Anti-spyware is available from many software companies. These programs can provide real-time malware detection, either through an updatable list or using a combination of the two systems. Many of these programs are standalone, while others come with an antivirus program. Several are offered for free download if the program is installed on a personal computer and is not used for commercial purposes.
Consumers in the antispyware market should note that many programs that advertise themselves as protection software are actually spyware. As a result, individuals must be cautious when downloading software from the Internet. Several tech sites provide credible download reviews for concerned consumers.