Creepy Crawlers

Who hasn’t seen a creepy crawler or two march across their laptop, especially during hot summer months? It’s something that can be quite off-putting, but easily fixed with some DIY pest control. But there are other times when they are inside the device plying their evil trade. I notice for example that when I have made a purchase online, say a jacket at Eddie Bauer, I get ads for similar items while I am checking my email. Someone was paying attention! They do some invisibly until you put two and two together. These spying crawlers that glean marketing statistics are harmless enough as they track my web activity, although they are annoying, but others are not so nice. They try to steal private information and thus put user identities in jeopardy. Payment software is at great risk for breaches of security. Your social security number and credit card data are there for the picking. Virus software to the rescue.

Infected software has malware, or malicious or malevolent activity. Attackers invent subterfuge programs to disrupt computer operations and to gain sensitive information without your permission or knowledge. People adept at coding and scripts are at fault. You definitely want to fight such hostile intrusions that come in the form of viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware, adware, and more. Such malware is not the same as a computer bug or defect in a program that can be remedied in subsequent versions. That is par for the course with new software and is not in the same category.

I wish these perpetrators could find better things to do with their free time. With some it is a full-time job. It’s a big business to find out consumer habits so, for them, it is not a total waste of talent. I wish they would use voluntary polls instead.

How do you get infected? Usually by sharing files or through false file names that trick users into installing malware. It can also come from free software that you download, hidden bugs and all. They may contain adware, spyware, or malware. Finally, a likely source are infected or bogus websites. Surfing only trusted sites is therefore a good plan of avoidance. It only takes a second to double check when going into unknown waters, or links.

No one likes the idea of being spied upon surreptitiously, even if it is by a non-human creepy crawler. It is an invasion of privacy and some types are actually illegal. In any case, if they don’t wreak havoc and require a technician’s attention, they will provoke your frustration and dismay. After a while, you just don’t want any more ads for the same jacket you bought a year ago! So consider buying anti-malware software with an easy user interface. They work wonders. You can also get programs that will help speed up your computer, optimize memory usage, clean your registry, and attain faster boot times. As many attackers and hackers as are out there, we also have do good programmers waiting in the wings to counterattack.