You get your new computer. You push the power button and Windows starts, the welcome screen comes up and your computer is ready to use in 30 seconds. Wow, you say, this computer is fast. A few months go by and after you shop on line, you bank on line you start you're my space page, you download music from lime wire. You decide to check your email and press the power button. The Windows screen comes up, the computer is taking a lot longer to boot up. You see the startup screen and wait, wait and wait to start using the computer. You finally are ready and hit the internet explorer icon and it starts slower and takes longer to load you home page. "What is the problem?" you say to yourself as you wonder what the problem could be. "Spyware" someone tells you is the problem.
But is it?
There are several reasons why Windows slows down and it's true that spyware is one of the major problems. What is Spyware? Spyware is software that transmits personal information from your computer to some place on the internet without your approval or knowledge. You get this from allowing an add-on to load when you install a program on your computer. A tool bar or other "helper" application supposedly to provide some free service ends up transmitting information about you and your internet habits to a marketing firm that uses the information to target specific ads to your computer.
A less threatening kind of malware (i.e. malicious software) is adware. Adware is similar to spyware, but does not transmit personally identifiable information, or at least the collector promises not to sell it. Instead, it collects usage information. Also, adware is often a side-effect of spyware, as both monitor you for a sole purpose - delivering advertisements to you that are especially tailored to your habits.
Another form detected under the spyware category are tracking cookies. Cookies are used all over the internet in useful and less useful places. Advertisement companies often set cookies whenever your browser loads a banner from them. The cookie contains code that notifies the company every time you visit a site that contains their ads.
If you surf the internet you get spyware. Just like spyware is big business removing spyware is a big business. Just perform an internet search on spyware and you will come across countless spyware removal programs. Some are freeware and some you pay a fee for. What do you use? I have downloaded countless programs and read many reviews and here is what I have found. No one spyware removal program does the complete job of removing spyware. Free programs such as Windows defender and adware do a great job however you really need to purchase a spyware program to complement them.
Remember, a pay or free program will not get them all. You really need both. Most have money back guarentees. Try them and keep the combination of the two or three (buy one, two free) that work for you.