If you run any type of Internet business, Adware and Spyware can be a very serious issue. These programs hide themselves on your computer and do all sorts of annoying and potentially dangerous things.
Viruses spread on your PC. The good news is that Spyware applications usually stay put, much like a parasite. Spyware collects information about your messaging and browsing behavior and your online preferences with the intent to sell it to online advertisers.
Adware is an application which shows advertisements on your PC, including banners and pop-ups. Some Adware programs also track the usage behavior of the application user without the knowledge of that user.
If you find ads constantly appearing on your computer, your home page being changed repeatedly, mysterious toolbars appearing on your browser, a noticeably slower PC, or any other weird thing happening then chances are you have some form of Spyware or Adware on your PC.
It's scary to know that you're being "watched", and that your private information that you assume is safe may actually be used against you. Adware/Spyware programs can enter your PC through email, instant messaging, or downloading files. It's especially scary for the Internet marketer, because we are constantly purchasing and downloading new products and services online.
If you let Adware pile up on your computer, things can get pretty ugly. It was getting to the point where every time I opened my browser a search toolbar would appear on top (even though I kept uninstalling it) along with about 5 popup windows. I couldn't get any work done without some kind of interruption every 2 minutes. Talk about annoying! And running virus software such as Norton didn't help.
If you are finding yourself in the same situation, don't despair. There are programs available (both free and paid) to help you get Spyware and Adware off your PC. It is not the intent of this article to try to sell you on any one piece of software. In fact, I recommend starting with free software, then evaluating your situation.
For Spyware, the best free program I've used is Spybot Search & Destroy, which can be downloaded at:
For Adware, the best free program I've used is Ad-Aware, which can be downloaded at:
These 2 programs got rid of most of the Spyware/Adware on my machine, but I was still experiencing some problems so I went ahead and purchased some software. There are a lot of good programs out there that will get rid of both Spyware and Adware with the push of one button. Most run between $25-$40.
If you are still experiencing popups or other symptoms of Spyware after running the free programs, do a little bit of research and upgrade to a paid version. Most offer some sort of guarantee, and the money you spend will be well worth the headaches and annoyances of Spyware on your PC.
Copyright 2005 Michael Murray
Michael Murray is a 22-year old full-time Internet marketer and college student with Cerebral Palsy who lives in sunny Orlando Florida. His latest site is an information center on how to remove Adware & Spyware from your PC: