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What is Spyware?

Spyware are malicious programs that run undetected on personal computers and allow thieves remote access to your system or information.

Trojans are e-mails containing links or attachments that install harmful programs (like spyware) on your computer when you click on them.

The best defense against spyware and trojans is to install anti-virus and anti-spyware software.

How do I know if spyware has infected my computer?

Watch for:

  • E-mail attachments or Internet downloads that end with ".exe" or ".dll".
  • A high volume of pop-up ads appearing on your computer.
  • A sudden change in your browser's home page.
  • Sluggish or slow performance when opening programs or saving files.
  • New, unexpected toolbars that appear on your browser.

How do I prevent spyware from infecting my computer?

  • Keep your operating system, Internet browsers and anti-virus and anti-spyware software up-to-date.
  • Download software only from sites you know and trust.
  • Don't click on links inside pop-up windows.
  • Avoid opening and reading unsolicited e-mails. These can expose your computer to spyware.
  • Install a firewall to block unauthorized users from accessing your computer.

Anti-Spyware Software Examples:

  • Spybot
  • Ad-Aware
  • Microsoft Anti-Spyware


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