What Exactly Is Spyware? How Do You Know If Your Computer Has Spyware?
It is true that in today’s world, the internet is unquestionably the king of information in our daily lives. It is the most convenient, fastest, and widely used method for everyone to search for information, buy products online, visit chat rooms, download music and video software, and so on. However, it is also true that whenever you are actively connected to the internet, while unknowingly and happily browsing the internet, you are technically exposed and at risk of spyware infection to some extent. So it’s not surprising if someone close to you has previously expressed how inconvenient it is that his or her computer has gone haywire due to spyware infection. In the worst-case scenario, you may discover that all of your information and important data have vanished forever, with no way of recovering them. Nonetheless, you will have to burn a hole in your pocket to spend a few hundred dollars to repair it.
So, what is spyware, and how can it infect your computer?
Spyware is a type of software that is typically delivered to your computer in conjunction with other programs and has the ability to be secretly installed on your computer. Spyware, in general, is a malicious and intelligent hidden program capable of collecting and extracting information from your PC activities while you are actively connected to the internet.
Its ability to hide and operate silently without your knowledge while waiting for an opportunity to infiltrate your PC. Once inside your PC, it has the ability to monitor, collect, extract, and steal information from your computer system right under your nose. It is also rather despicable because it has the ability to alter and change the functioning system of your PC, causing problems.
Your computer will act strangely and malfunction. Spyware has even surpassed other viruses as the most dangerous program, causing massive damage to you and your computer system. They are most commonly found in freely downloadable programs such as games, videos, and web-toolbars By downloading these “infected” programs, you are inviting and opening the door for spyware programs to enter your PC as well.
What Could Be The Symptoms Or Tell-Tale Signs Of Spyware Infection On Your PC?
If your computer’s behavior is similar to one of the ones listed below, it is very likely that it is infected with spyware software.
There are a lot of annoying pop-up ads that you never click on.
While searching or browsing the internet, pop-up ads appeared out of nowhere on your PC monitor. Your PC monitor is inundated with pop-up advertisements, which you are unable to close.
If your computer is frequently bombarded with these persistent pop-up ads that refuse to go away, your computer is almost certainly infected with spyware. Do not attempt to click on these pop-ups because you may invite or trigger more spyware to infiltrate your computer. Never ever click on pop-up ads as long as the spyware infection is not removed.
Your computer’s speed is clearly slower than usual.
If your computer’s system speed suddenly begins to function or operate painfully slower than usual, even when no files or websites are opened, this is clearly another telltale sign of spyaware on your PC. This is because spyware and adware programs are active and require a large amount of computer resources to function fully and efficiently. As a result, it is not uncommon for some programs to fail to open or to hang when you click on them.
Your Homepage Has Been Modified
Your homepage has changed; now, whenever you open an internet browser, it takes you to other websites rather than the one you were assigned, such as MSN or Yahoo. Browser hijackers have changed your default homepage or search page settings, and you may not be able to return to the original homepage even after adjusting to the original settings.
Another desktop icon or shortcut that you do not have installed.
You notice unusual new icons or shortcuts on your desktop that you are certain you did not install previously. Warning to users: do not click on them as they will entice you to download more spyware. Remove these unwanted and dangerous icons as soon as possible, and empty your recycle bin. After that, run an anti-spyware scan on the PC system.
Unwanted new software programs installed on your computer
You should go to the Control Panel, select and click Add/Remove Programs every now and then to see if there are any strange additional programs that you did not install. For example, you may come across strange programs such as AdultChat, CasinoGold, and so on. P/s I immediately uninstalled and removed them; do not click and run these programs as this may cause more spyware to download.
*How to Remove Spyware
We must admit that there is currently no anti-spyware product that is truly capable of removing all types of spyware on its own. However, getting a reliable and trusted anti-spyware software program to protect your PC system from spyware attacks is still essential. When choosing an anti-spyware program, keep in mind that there are numerous spyware removal programs available on the internet. As a result, choose and use only reputable antispyware software programs that are effective in detecting and eliminating spyware. Ascertain that they come highly recommended and have been thoroughly tested by a team of software engineers who are constantly updating the spyware definition list. Be disciplined, keep your computer safe, and maintain it. You’ll be relieved to know that you won’t have any major spyware infections on your computer in the future, giving you peace of mind!