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Free Spyware

Free Spyware


Adware - "Advertiser-supported software" that installs itself on your PC specifically to deliver targeted marketing and advertisements to the user

Adware networks - the servers behind adware; are often marketing firms that develop and pay for the software

Anti spyware - software designed to block, detect and clean spyware from your PC

Backdoor - harmful software that allows hackers inside your computer


Backdoor Santas - valid, stand-alone programs that collect data but are not supported by adware networks

Banner ads - advertisements that run across the top of Web sites; the graphics use up bandwidth

Browser Hijackers - malicious software that redirects your homepage or your browser searches to other sites

Collectware - software that collects information browser habits and personal information on a user; a problem when it crosses the line into free spyware

Cookie - identifying software used by Web sites to recognize a user

Dialer - malicious software that takes over your modem in order to dial random numbers

Drive-by download - software, usually adware or spyware, that installs itself without any action on the part of the user

Firewall - protective filter software that prevents other users from entering your computer

Freeware - copyright-protected software that is available for free download from its owners; tricky free spyware is a major area of concern

Malware - the term given to 'malicious software,' or software that is written to specifically damage a computer system

Pop-up ads - advertisements that suddenly appear on your computer screen, not necessarily in your browser window; they can block your view of the browser and use up band-width

Spyware - malicious software that installs itself on your PC to track your computer use and personal habits

Stalking horse - the harmful software that is included in Trojan horses

Trojan horse - valid, downloadable software that contains spyware and adware; something that unsuspectedly contains an element of harm

Virus - malicious software written specifically to cause (sometimes permanent) harm to a computer system

Web bug - tracking software in the form of a 1-pixel graphic that records user action and history