Spy Sweeper Review, Part 3

Dennis Faas's picture

Yesterday's article about Spy Sweeper sparked interest from Readers.

I received a few interesting comments and questions which I would like to address. Infopackets Reader David G. asks:

" [Was Webroot's] Spy Sweeper made with stolen [database] code from either AdAware or Spybot S&D? I could be wrong, but I seem to remember reading something [about] this."

My response:

The short answer is simply, "No." The software in question is in reference to an article published in the Gazette earlier this year ("Controversy over Lavasoft Ad-aware and SpyBot S&D", February, 19, 2003). It was originally published by Mike Healan of Spyware Info, and then handed over to me.

The gist of the article is that, "both developers (of SpyBot S&D and AdAware) have issued [public] statements ... indicating that their software has been reverse-engineered and copied by ... Trek Blue's SpywareNuker and BulletProofSoft's Spyware Remover."

A few Readers wrote in to tell me that they use Spybot S&D / Lavasoft AdAware in series with Spy Sweeper to rid their systems of Spyware. At first, I thought this was a bit overkill -- but it makes perfect sense. Since each program is written by a different author, the degree of Spyware detection and removal also varies. Running more than 1 Spyware removal program may seem redundant, but may very well be worth the effort.

Pippie1949 writes:

" I use [Spy Sweeper] and really like it ... I also run AdAware and SpyBot with [Spy Sweeper], before running a full scan with Spy Sweeper. I auto run [an in-depth examination by Spy Sweeper] at 3AM every night. By the way, Spy Sweeper also prevents [homepage hijacking, which is a common practice used by unscrupulous Spyware authors and marketers] ... "

Donna from Ontario, Canada also sent me these comments:

" I downloaded Spy Sweeper and ran it immediately after [updating] SpyBot S&D. Spy Sweeper found 2 Spyware programs on my computer, and even showed me where they were. I am so impressed! Thank you for another excellent recommendation. "

And, Terry P. asks:

" I read with great interest your article on Spy Sweeper. I was curious, though. Doesn't Spy Checker perform the same tasks as AdAware and SpyBot? "

My response:

Yes and no. All 3 programs will remove Spyware / Adware from your computer, but vary their ability to detect questionable files. My impression (from Readers) is that Webroot's Spy Sweeper is able to pick up on a few extras that were missed by AdAware and SpyBot.

One of the most outstanding features offered by Spy Sweeper is the fact that it can dock in the system tray bar and monitor the system in real-time before Spyware has a chance to do any harm. I didn't see this feature listed on either of the AdAware or Spybot web sites.

Thanks to everyone for sending me your questions and concerns!

PS: The article on Spy Sweeper (if you missed yesterday's issue) is here:

Spy Sweeper Review

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