Computer Crime Research Center


How to combat spyware

Date: September 29, 2004
Source: eBCVG

The increasing -often commercial- interest in obtaining data that can identify and profile users is the root of the growing concern among the Internet community regarding protection of privacy.

While most companies obtain data on potential clients transparently and legally, as with all things there are exceptions. There are still malicious users and businesses prepared to obtain confidential information with scant regard for ethics.

These unscrupulous practices have fuelled the use of spyware: applications designed to obtain information about users without their knowledge, or in some cases, consent. Some spyware programs can draw up a detailed profile of a computer user, including, for example, the persons Internet habits, the amount of time spent online, favorite football team, or even in extreme circumstances, the user’s religion or sexual tendencies. There’s no doubt that the presence of spyware on a computer is a serious intrusion of privacy that needs to be dealt with.

On many occasions the information gathered is sold -often for considerable sums- to third-parties, which will no doubt lead to a further increase in the proliferation of spyware.

Spyware is actually installed remarkably easily on computers and many users are shocked -on scanning their systems- to find their computers crawling with this kind of program.

These kinds of programs often enter computers hidden in programs that apparently pose no threat whatsoever, such as freeware, shareware or demos. Often, the source of the download is more of a factor than the file itself, as many well-known files are tampered with and spyware inserted in them, meaning that when a user installs the legitimate program, the spyware is installed as well.
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2005-08-25 19:40:25 - Your blog is realy very interesting.... Ivailo
2005-01-31 08:06:54 - I think you are right. One neat thing,... Ben
2005-01-12 00:50:19 - Great Site - really useful information! Rodger
2005-01-06 21:17:05 - Thank you for this excellent interview.... Sanny
2004-12-21 21:32:52 - Thanks for helpful information! Wedd
2004-10-02 22:12:32 - SEARCH & DESTROY! Avatar
2004-09-30 13:17:24 - Everybody speaks about spyware as a huge... maruxz
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