What is Spyware? How to Protect Yourself Against It.

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Spyware is a type of malware that tracks your internet activities in order to gather sensitive information such as credit card numbers or demographics. Most of the time, spyware works in the background of a device, invisible to the unsuspecting.

Some of the most common reasons attackers use spyware include collecting data to sell to third-parties, to steal someone’s identity, or to spy on an individual’s computer usage.

How Do You Get Spyware on Your Computer?

Spyware comes in the form of a broad range of programs that hide in the background of your computer. There are several ways spyware can make its way onto your device including:

  • The attacker installing the spyware on your device
  • Downloading software or content from an infected source
  • Opening suspicious emails
  • Via non-secure internet connections

How to Protect Yourself against Spyware:

You have a chance of coming into contact with serious malware each time you use your devices. It’s important to understand how to block spyware as you surf the internet, clear your inbox, and beyond.

Although spyware is one of the most common types of malware that can infect your device, by following these tips, you can protect yourself.

  1. Use anti-spyware software. Software is the front-line between you and an attacker. There are various types of anti-virus software available to fit your budget and needs.
  2. Update your system. Make sure you update your browser and device often. There may be a bug that leaves your device open to spyware that only a current update may fix.
  3. Pay attention to your downloads. Be careful when downloading content from file sharing Spyware and malware often hide inside these downloads.
  4. Avoid pop-ups. As tantalizing as they might be, don’t select pop-ups that appear on your screen. You can also install a pop-up blocker and never deal with them.
  5. Keep an eye on your email. Don’t download documents from emails you don’t recognize. Better yet, don’t open the emails at all. Delete them.

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