12.02.2004

I Spy

I've had another post mentioning spyware, but apparently not everyone read it. I've fixed 3 computers with serious spyware problems in the last 3 days. The obvious symptom 2 of these people had was 'browser hijacking,' causing their browsers to redirect to a spyware site regardless of what website they were trying to get to. The amusing part of the problem was, our web filter blocks this specific spyware site, so, regardless of what website these girls tried to get to, they kept getting the Block page for Websense.
Two applications are wonderful for cleaning off most spyware, Spybot Search & Destroy and AdAware. The specific problem the 2 girls were having was fixed by AdAware. Spybot runs quickly and can immunize a system and protect the Windows registry, which are nice features. I have my little 'emergency response kit' on my USB drive which includes install files for Spybot, AdAware, Stinger and of course Firefox, the web browser I swear by.
All of the problems I fixed had to do with people (A) downloading 'free' programs from the web that had some simplistic utility but included a whole host of spyware or (B) unknowingly getting spyware by using Internet Explorer and going to malicious websites that downloaded the spyware in the background. (A) can be solved by education- only download programs from reputable sites, and read the privacy policy!- and (B) can be solved by using a browser that prevents malicious downloads in the background and pop-up windows.
Yay for Firefox. Boo for malware.
At least I'm utilizing my USB drive.

1 comment:

Ashley said...

you're so resourceful. :-)

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