Anti-Spyware that Installs Spyware

Dennis Faas's picture

Imagine this: news spreads on countless websites that a new form of Spyware is threatening computers on a global scale. Fearful that your system may have been recently compromised, you hop on over to Google and do a search for anti-spyware tools.

You find one that looks promising, click the link to download the anti-spyware program, and... POW! You're immediately hammered with a big red popup claiming that your machine has been infected and you must buy an application to fix it.

Welcome to the world of anti-spyware scams.

With the latest variant of this scam, Spyaxe, for which Nick recently noted (RE: remove SpyAxe), the list has grown to about 10 alleged anti-spyware removal tools that actually infect your computer.

The good news is that by keeping your copy of Windows patched, you should be protected against these types of exploits. 

How these sites expect users to not scream bloody murder is beyond me. At the time of this writing there are over 70 sites associated with SpyAxe or SpyTrooper. With all the other tools performing similar invasive installations, who knows how big this number will ultimately get?

As I have mentioned previously, if you're looking for any form of computer protection, don't just rely on Google. In many cases, you could end up with a tool that is either completely ineffective, or worse, will infect your machine. Look to resources such as Rogue / Suspect Anti-Spyware Products & Websites. Find a forum that deals directly with security issues, such as any on this list of ASAP members. Do some research and ask around. Do not accept the first answer you get. Look for a second or third opinion.

The bottom line is: do your homework, and don't take anything for granted when it comes to securing your computer.

Surf safe, and surf secure!

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