What is SpyWare, Malware, or Adware?

Spyware is computer software that is installed surreptitiously on a personal computer to intercept or take partial control over the user’s interaction with the computer, without the user’s informed consent.  Malware is short for “malicious software” and can include a virus or anything that is destructive to your working computer.  Adware usually describes a program that forces popup advertisements to be shown on the computer.  Many “programs” can actually be all three of these.

While the term spyware suggests software that secretly monitors the user’s behavior, the functions of spyware extend well beyond simple monitoring. Spyware programs can collect various types of personal information, but can also interfere with user control of the computer in other ways, such as installing additional software, redirecting Web browser activity, or diverting advertising revenue to a third party.

What causes Pop-Ups?

Pop up advertisements are built in to several websites that you visit. It is almost a norm to have at least one window pop up with an advertisement during regular web surfing. It is, however, not normal to not be surfing the internet and still have pop up windows appear. See Spyware or Virus for more information.


We have many tools at our disposal for removing AdWare and Spyware applications. Each program is different, and many require varying degrees of expertise. Many computers we’ve dealt with have multiple infections, and many users are not aware they have a problem until something stops working.

Several customers complain that they still become infected even though they are running a firewall application. That’s a popular misconception; that a firewall will stop you from becoming infected with a spyware or adware. The firewall will sometimes stop your computer from sending out infections to other computers, but most spyware and adware arrives and looks like legit applications. Because of this, many users actually run the installation of spyware and adware without even knowing it.

Protection From Future Infections

We can recommend many Anti-Virus applications, Anti-Spyware programs, and Firewalls for your particular needs. We’ll even teach you how to run these programs with as little effort as possible. Several of our solutions are a “set it and forget it” type of program.