What Effects Does Spyware Have on Computers?

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Spyware is software that has infiltrated your computer through a web channel to secretly track your browser activity. Spyware programs can record your every key stroke and transmit that information to a remote host, who may then have access to your confidential information. Beyond invading your privacy, the effects of spyware can be detrimental to your computer's overall performance.

The Slow Down

  • The more spyware and malware you acquire on your hard drive, the more it taxes your system overall. Spyware "collects" this tax in processing speed, slowing down your entire system. Programs take longer to load, and your web browser may be reduced to the speed of a crawl. All of these factors can combine until your computer has essentially turned against itself. Only when the spyware has been removed will your computer return to optimal performance.

Pop-Up Windows

  • Having spyware on your computer can result in having unexplained pop-up windows suddenly appearing on your screen. This kind of spyware is popular with advertisers and usually infiltrates your computer by attaching itself to software downloads such as games, browser plug-ins or toolbars. If a pop-up window appears on your screen and you are not online, your computer most likely is infected.

Privacy Violation

  • Our computers contain practically everything there is to know about us. Having spyware on your computer is an enormous violation of this privacy. Most spyware is merely designed to track your browsing habits, so advertisers will know how best to reach you online. However, some spyware is more nefarious. Important, vital, private information like passwords and banking information can be compromised. If you think your computer may be infected by spyware, take action immediately.

References

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