Spyware is as nasty as it sounds and can cause you a lot of trouble, but can be stopped. Here is a brief overview of spyware, and what you can do to protect yourself and your business from it.

What Is Spyware?

Spyware is any program that hides in your system secretly copying data. It typically targets passwords, credit card credentials, and email addresses, but can even record keystrokes or browsing habits.

Spyware is obviously installed without the user’s consent, and often comes in attached to another program that the user installed. Spyware can also be spread through other malware methods, including compromised websites or phishing emails. An estimated 90% of home PCs are infected with some form of spyware.

You May Have Spyware If….

If your system is infected with spyware, your system is likely to run slowly, freeze or crash. Some spyware will change your settings, or send your web browser to malicious websites, causing more problems.

The central issue, though, is data leakage. Spyware’s purpose is to help cybercriminals steal data; access credentials, financial data and sensitive company information.

What You Can Do to Prevent It

Know what to look for. When downloading content, double check that it’s from a trusted source, since cybercriminals disguise spyware to look like legitimate business or personal emails. When checking your email, keep a lookout for phishing.

If you have a complex network setup, it may be better for you to have an outsourced IT department manage your IT security. Our expert technicians can identify and remove threats like spyware remotely before they enter your system.

Schedule a Free Malware Consultation by calling (973) 882-464 or leave a reply here.

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