Windows Security - Virus, Trojan, Spyware and Adware
Dr. Herong Yang, Version 2.20

What Is Spyware?

This section provides a quick introduction of spyware.

A couple of weeks ago, I had to spend several hours to help a friend of mine to remove spyware on his computer. It was a very interesting experience, and I want to share with you.

First, I searched the Web for a good definition of spyware. Here is what I found:

Spyware is a broad category of malicious software designed to intercept or take partial control of a computer's operation without the informed consent of that machine's owner or legitimate user. While the term taken literally suggests software that surreptitiously monitors the user, it has come to refer more broadly to software that subverts the computer's operation for the benefit of a third party.

Spyware differs from viruses and worms in that it does not usually self-replicate. Like many recent viruses, however, spyware is designed to exploit infected computers for commercial gain. Typical tactics furthering this goal include delivery of unsolicited pop-up advertisements; theft of personal information (including financial information such as credit card numbers); monitoring of Web-browsing activity for marketing purposes; or routing of HTTP requests to advertising sites.

Table of Contents

 About This Windows Security Book

Spyware Adware Detection and Removal

What Is Spyware?

 "HijackThis" - Spyware and Browser Hijacker Detector

 "HijackThis" Report Entry Types

 Spyware: WebBar - htwtb.bin and bar.dll

 Spyware: SurfBuddy - sbuddy.dll

 Spyware: WebSpecials - webspec.dll

 Spyware: DSSAgent - DSSAgent.exe

 Transponder: Best Offer - farmmext.exe

 Spyware: dinst.exe - dsr.dll

 IE Addon Program Listing and Removal

 Vundo (VirtuMonde/VirtuMundo) - vtsts.dll Removal

 Trojan and Malware "Puper" Description and Removal

 VSToolbar (VSAdd-in.dll) - Description and Removal

 Anti-Virus Tool - McAfee VirusScan Enterprise

 Spybot - Spyware Blocker, Detection and Removal

 PWS (Password Stealer) Trojan Infection Removal

 MS08-001 Vulnerability on Windows Systems

 Antivirus System PRO

 Glossary of Terms

 References

 PDF Printing Version

Dr. Herong Yang, updated in 2009
What Is Spyware?